Millions of people controlled by the “imaginary army” of Islamic State (IS) are inactive in challenging the extremists because of Western polices and invasion, George Galloway has said.
The Respect MP was branded a “total disgrace” after telling the Commons that people living in areas controlled by IS are “quiescent” and are “acting as the water in which they are swimming”.
MPs are fools claiming big salaries and expenses who do not want to see the public’s view that air strikes will spread extremism further and deeper around the world, Mr Galloway added.
He insisted Turkey and Saudi Arabia should be bombing IS, telling the Commons: “The last people who should be returning to the scene of their former crimes are Britain, France and the United States of America.”
Speaking as MPs met to discuss air strikes in Iraq against IS, also referred to as Isil, Mr Galloway said the UK’s military action was already been extended before a vote had taken place.
He noted MPs had called for involvement in Syria and troops to be involved – with the only question being whose boots will be on the ground.
Mr Galloway said: “This debate has been characterised by members of Parliament moving around imaginary armies.
“The Free Syrian Army is a fiction which has been in the receipt of hundreds of millions of dollars, hundreds of tonnes of weapons, virtually all of which were taken from them by al Qaida, which has now mutated into Isil.
“The Iraqi army is the most expensively trained and most modernly equipped army in history. Hundreds of billions of dollars have been expended on the Iraqi army, which ran away – leaving its equipment behind it.
“Isil itself is an imaginary army and a former defence secretary no less said we must bomb their bases. They don’t have any bases. The territory they control is the size of Britain and yet there’s only between 10 and 20,000 of them. Do the maths.
“They don’t concentrate as an army, they don’t live in bases and the only way a force of that size could successfully hold the territory they hold is if they have a population which is acting as the water in which they are swimming.
“And that population is quiescent because of Western policies and Western invasion and occupation – that’s the truth of the matter.
“Isil could not survive for five minutes if the tribes in the west of Iraq rose up against them.”
Labour MP Ian Austin (Dudley North) intervened, telling Mr Galloway: “Do you not understand how appalled people will be to hear you say that women buried alive, women enslaved are quiescent in their persecution by these people? What a total disgrace.”
Mr Galloway replied: “Well, they don’t like it up them, Mr Speaker. They’d rather have an imaginary debate moving around imaginary armies.
“Isil is a death cult, it’s a gang of terrorist murderers. It’s not an army and it’s certainly not an army that’s going to be destroyed by aerial bombardment.
“Isil is able to rule the parts of Iraq that it does because nobody in those parts has any confidence in the government in Baghdad.”
He went on: “This will not be solved by bombing. We’ve been bombing Iraqis for 100 years.”
Labour frontbencher Emma Reynolds told Mr Galloway: “I’m sure we’re all very grateful for the lecture but what is your solution to the problem?”
With MPs speaking to a five-minute time limit, gaining up to two minutes for taking interventions, Mr Galloway replied: “Now I’ve got an extra minute thanks to you, I’ll be able to tell you.
“This will not be solved, every matter will be made worse, extremism will spread further and deeper around the world just like happened as a result of the last Iraq war.
“People outside can see it but the fools in here who draw a big salary and big expenses cannot or will not see it like you with your asinine intervention.”
Rory Stewart, Conservative chairman of the Defence Select Committee, then interjected, asking Mr Galloway: “Would you please bring us to your solution to this problem?”
Mr Galloway replied: “Well, with five minutes, it’s difficult. We have to strengthen those who are already fighting Isil. We have to give them all the weapons they need.
“The Baghdad government has paid for weapons which have still not even been delivered. We have to strengthen the Kurdish fighters, who are doing a good job by the way in fighting Isil.”
Branding the Saudis as one of the “imaginary armies” in the area, he went on: “They haven’t even told their own people that they’re on the masthead.
“Has anyone in here seen a picture of them fighting in Syria? Anyone seen a picture of a Saudi jet bombing in Syria? Saudi Arabia is the nest from which Isil and these other vipers have come and, by the way, they do a fine line in head chopping themselves.
“Saudi Arabia has 700 war planes – get them to bomb. Turkey is a Nato member, get Turkey to bomb.
“The last people who should be returning to the scene of their former crimes are Britain, France and the United States of America.”
Report By Herald Scotland (Source Link)