Nick Abbot 10pm - 1am
Former ambassador to Iran warns that the US is not always a good ally of the UK
5 January 2020, 15:19
Sir Richard Dalton warned that the US is not a good ally of the UK on many Middle Eastern issues - and the UK needs to retain a distinctive policy from them.
The former British ambassador to Iran said that Dominic Raab is "expressing sympathy for what he describes as a right of the US to defend itself."
He continued: "But at the same time, he's endorsing the diplomatic route. Now, he has said that President Trump and Emmanuel Macron have an approach which failed in September, but which is still being held open.
"Now, that's good news. Because we need much more of that in the present circumstances."
Nigel Farage asked Sir Richard Dalton if Dominic Raab has to make a decision.
Sir Richard Dalton replied: "No, we stand up for British interests and British interests are in securing the benefits to our security and to the region of the Middle East in the Iran nuclear deal, which the United States has wilfully and illicitly broken.
"Now, the United States is not a good ally of the UK on many Middle Eastern issues. On some it is, on other it isn't.
"The fact is we need to retain a distinctive UK policy and the one that Mr. Raab has outlined of encouraging diplomacy in which the Europeans are taking a lead is the right approach.
"It doesn't go far enough to my way of thinking after all, there are no good intervenors in the Middle East maelstrom at present."
He added: "I don't think Iran is uniquely culpable and is the only country that needs to be contained. Saudi Arabia, the UAE have engaged in a vicious war in Yemen with UK and US support.
"We have Israel seeking to extend illicit gains in the West Bank and Jerusalem. We have Turkey, invading the north of Syria. We have a failed attempt by the West to support a rebellion in Syria.
"So everybody needs to stand back and we need to go back to the fundamental lack of rules of the road on how to conduct international relations in the Middle East.
"Knee jerk reactions like the killing of Soleimani have just made the world a much more dangerous place."