Thursday, March 29, 2007

Iran now refuses to release British Wren...

The Iranians are complaining that the British Government are putting too much pressure on them to release the British sailors they kidnapped last week.

As punishment for Britain not behaving correctly, they now refuse to free their only female captive - that's according to Bloomberg news agency.

This is despite strong hints yesterday by the Iranians that they would free Leading Wren Faye Turney today. I refuse to post the humiliating image that the Iranians released yesterday of their young captive with her head covered and smoking a ciggie.

I prefer the photo of a trained Wren ready to do her duty for our country. At 26, Leading Wren Turney is younger than my youngest daughter and I'm sure all our thoughts are with her family - and those of the male sailors held captive inside Iran.

The Iranians are guilty of outrageous international thuggery - particularly after their claims that the Royal Navy had infringed Iranian waters has been shown to be absolute rubbish.

The first coordinates the Iranian provided were not even in Iranian waters, so they quickly made up another set of coordinates. And all the time, the ship the Royal Navy had boarded - on behalf of the United Nations - was at anchor almost two miles inside Iraqi waters.

I'm sure every Brit agrees that our Government are absolutely right to pile the pressure on the Iranians to get our sailors back safely.

We must also totally isolate Iran on the world stage and show them it is their behaviour that is unacceptable.

Imagine if we Brits were holding Iranian sailors...?


Anonymous said...

The Iranian authorities should release our sailors and without conditions.

You can't see this kidnap except as a response to the provocations against Iran, culminating with the kidnap of their consulate in Irbil.

The Brits, as you put it, have made it perfectly clear that they want none of our government's failed occupation of Iraq.

Far from being able to pile pressure on Iran, any moral authority we can assemble - and we are absolutely right to demand the realease of our sailors under international law - is undermined by our untenable position in Iraq.

The far right in Washington, with the inexplicable support of a supposedly Labour British Prime Minister, have been spoiling for a conflict with Iran and we Brits should be very careful to have no part in it.

Hawkish posturing against Iran plays right into the hands of hardliners and strengthens them.

fairdealphil said...


thanks for your comment.

I thought the Royal Navy were acting under a United Nations mandate in Iraqi waters...

am i wrong?

Anonymous said...

You are not wrong, Phil, but my comments stand as written.

Anonymous said...

I appreciate that you want the sailors released Brynley, but I think you are very generous in (apparently) justifying Iranian actions.

The Brits have made no such statement about any hypothetical withdrawal from Iraq. They have been consulted once, and 80% of them voted for parties supporting the liberation. This is fact. Your statement is wishful thinking.

You are right about American policy to Iran. Many want this issue settled. Iran is defiant, aggressive and dangerous on the world stage. Many in the US Administration want to bring about a solution. I wish them luck.

The truth is Brynley, the kidnapping is an inexcusable act of aggression. These soldiers were engaged on a UN mandate outside Iranian territory. Iran has done everything in its power to agitate in Iraq(I presume you don't deny this), in an entirely malicious way. Every day they keep them captive makes them more isolated. And if even one of those soliders is harmed in any way, then there will the pressure to turn Iran over will be too much.

Anonymous said...

Michael is clearly looking for his Gulf of Tonkin moment.

He wants a pretext to "turn them over", which I take it means to attack Iran.

The practical problem Michael faces is that Iran holds all the cards.

They have so many choices. A counterstrike in Iraq against oil or against occupation forces. Closing the Gulf to shipping. Retailiating against western interests in Dubai. To name but three (there are manty more).

Any one of these choices would pitch the entire region into an unpredictable war and a world recession.

To what end? The Iranian people will naturally enough close ranks if attacked. The hardliners will be strengthened. Democratic voices will fall silent.

Can the Iranians be militarily brought to heel by Western forces? Not a chance. We couldn't even pacify Iraq, a relative minnow.

Anonymous said...

We have heard all bollox this before though Brynley haven't we?! All those stories about the heroic Afghan resistamce to the British in the 19th C and the Soviets in the 80's. Three weeks and we walked into Kabul. We had it again, with all the cobblers about "Saddam's supreme elite Republican Guard". And we couldn't see the f***ers for dust when we turned up. You lot were wrong before and you are wrong now. You deserve to be, and will be, ignored completely. So let's have less cowardice, fewer excuses and a bit more courage from the likes of you Brynley.

fairdealphil said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
fairdealphil said...


The last thing we need right now is a war to "turn over" Iran.

My point is however, that by kidnapping Royal Naval personnel who were acting for the United Nations, the Iranians have raised the chances of such a war.

Indeed, the kidnapping of military personnel outside their own jurisdiction IS an act of war.

fairdealphil said...


I have to say so far, our Government appear to have acted entirely appropriately in attempting to extract them safely - i don't believe they have used "hawkish posturing" as you suggest.

given that the Iranians are daily subjecting the British sailors to disgraceful daily abuse by parading them on TV, forcing them to write confessions etc, what exactly would your plan be to get them released...?

(i've re-written this reply and deleted the original posted a few minutes ago: after i'd pressed the button to publish, i realised i'd written it in too much haste and needed to make it clearer!! - phil)

Anonymous said...

Phil: fair points, but our integrity and that of our military has been pre-sold to Bush,Cheyney,Bolton who quite genuinely want to provoke and sponsor terror in Iran. I can't recall our Prime Minister distancing himself from any of it. So he's made his bed...

fairdealphil said...


this crisis is escalating by the day - i see there are now calls for our sailors to be put on trial.

it is also increasingly galling to hear apologists for the Iranians complaining that the British Government are not asking nicely enough for the release of our sailors who have been kidnapped while going about routine peacekeeping duties for the United Nations.

Anonymous said...

Of course the Iranian authorities should release our sailors. But any hint of escalation and we know who to blame: Bush and Cheyney and their mirror images in the Iran Revolutionary Guard. Why do we never criticise U.S. government provocations? They started this particular round of hostage taking. Our Prime Minister has failed to distance himself from the neocons who seek an attack on Iran. So he'll get no sympathy from most Brits. He's made his choices.

Anonymous said...

Glad you feel able to speak on behalf of "us Brits" Brynley, even though it is only your naive empty head that makes you think you have such authority.

Quite how did the Americans start this crisis? Get a grip.