MP Mary Creagh: '2013 Vote Against Syria Action Was Huge Mistake'

13 December 2016, 16:49 | Updated: 13 December 2016, 17:00

Mary Creagh

The Labour MP for Wakefield voted against military intervention in Syria in 2013, in line with the party whip, a vote that she says will stay with her forever.

Speaking to LBC's Shelagh Fogarty, Mrs Creagh said “It’s the one vote that will stay with me for the rest of my life. It was a huge mistake.”

She believes that if the UK had voted for intervention, which would likely have been in conjunction with America, the conflict could have been frozen at an early stage, preventing Russia from gaining influence and stemming the rise of Islamic State. What is more, it's one conflict where they had solid evidence of horrific actions by the Syrian government.

“The irony was we went to war in Iraq thinking there were WMDs, but we voted not to go to war in Syria having witnessed weapons of mass destruction; sarin gas, chlorine and napalm being dropped on civilian areas and schools.”

While Mrs Creagh takes responsibility for her voting decisions, she believes the real failing in 2013 was with the Conservative party and its inability to get enough of its own MPs to vote for the military action that they tabled.

However, she doesn’t let her own party off the hook. Labour leader at the time, Ed Miliband, called for MPs to vote against the intervention. Mrs Creagh says she soon regretted following her leader’s call.

“That was the bit that really stuck in my throat; afterwards being told that we’d done a great and wonderful thing.

"After that vote we went home, I turned on the news, and napalm had been dropped on a school in northern Syria, and I thought ‘this is what we’ve done’.”

More Shelagh Fogarty News

See more More Shelagh Fogarty News

The Princess of Wales says she edited the photograph that was released to mark Mother's Day.

The insistence that we see Kate is tantamount to stalking, writes Shelagh Fogarty

Caller tells Shelagh his solution to illegal immigration.

LBC caller tells Shelagh Fogarty that the Channel islands are the answer to 'illegal immigration'

'Rishi Sunak chooses to do the self interested party politics': Shelagh Fogarty reflects on Tories' immigration policies

'Rishi Sunak chooses to do the self-interested party politics': Shelagh Fogarty reflects on Tories' migration policies

Shelagh Fogarty

Former Treasury official outlines 'three immediate priorities' likely to be reflected in Autumn Statement

Shelagh Fogarty

Suella Braverman's hardline crime bill seems like she's ‘interviewing' for career at ‘pathetic’ news channels, says caller

Shelagh and caller Sam

Anti-Semitic chants and actions 'delegitimize' pro-Palestinian cause asserts this Shelagh Fogarty caller

Shelagh and Ricardo Dos Santos

'It's sickening': Ricardo Dos Santos speaks to Shelagh Fogarty as two officers sacked over stop and search


Rishi Sunak has 'failed monumentally' to 'humanise' both sides of the Israel-Hamas conflict says Israel expert

Shelagh and Callum

Twitter is a 'particularly dangerous' place to get information now says the Centre for Countering Digital Hate

Shelagh and caller Simon

LBC caller details 'disgusting anti-Semitic' act he witnessed, as hate crimes rise in fall out of Israel-Hamas war

Sister of missing Israeli woman

'We hope she's hiding somewhere': Sister of missing Israeli festival goer fears she is being held hostage by Hamas

Distraught caller on Israel-Gaza conflict.

'This is a war against Hamas!': Distraught caller wants Israel and Palestine to take down the 'enemy' together

Shelagh and Alicia Kearns

Head of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee expresses concern over Israeli 'siege of Gaza'

Shelagh Fogarty caller on facial recognition.

This caller lacks 'trust' in the government's handling of the AI facial recognition debate

Shelagh condemns PM's comments on 'dignity' of the elderly.

'He painted a picture of a Britain that the Conservatives meant to build...': Shelagh Fogarty condemns PM's suggestion that elderly have 'dignity'

Shelagh Fogarty on Jenrick

'We're full aren't we?': Shelagh questions Robert Jenrick's motive behind encouraging Brits to increase birth rate