Prime Minister Theresa May said to hundreds of British soldiers stationed in the former Soviet republic of Estonia that leaving the EU would not lessen the country’s commitment to European “security.”
Britain leads the Nato military alliance’s “enhanced forward presence” in eastern Europe, which sees troops engage in provocative manoeuvres in the area.
The Prime Minister attacked “Russia’s continued aggression” in the region, presumably referring to the Kremlin’s half-hearted backing for the anti-fascist resistance movement in Ukraine.
“When a nation like Russia violates the rules-based international order, we must come together with our allies to defend that international system,” she declared.
But Stop the War coalition convener Lindsey German said Ms May was in no position to “accuse anyone of aggression and violating the international order.”
“This is a woman who has supported wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria.
“She refuses to criticise Donald Trump and is now trying to boost Britain’s military role as it declines economically.
“Everyone who wants a more stable and peaceful world should oppose her policies.”
And left-wing anti-EU campaign Lexit convener Alex Gordon said Ms May’s speech revealed the government was “pinning its hopes on being the arms dealer of choice for those central and eastern European nations who have been told by Trump to increase their defence spending.
“We know the [EU’s] Treaty of Lisbon made convergence between EU and Nato membership a requirement. Britain may be leaving, but May and [Defence Secretary] Michael Fallon are playing toy soldiers at the bequest of Rolls-Royce, BAE and the other big arms manufacturers.
“This is why we need a left exit from the EU.
“Those on the left who argue we should soft-pedal on Trident and foreign policy in order to concentrate our fire on austerity risk standing aside as we are plunged into a dangerous confrontation with Russia at a time when the US president is endangering peace across the world.”
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