UK Trade Balance with Muslim World: Why British Interests Ignored?

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By Dr Shahid Qureshi : –

British trade balance was US $ 116532 million dollars with the Arab countries in four years period between 1995 – 1998 and was growing. It was US $ 23285 million in 1995 and by 1998 it grown to US $ 42205 million. The total trade balance with the EU was US $ 318141 million and with United States it was US $ 854992 million for the same period.

Keeping in view the above economic interests of both the US and UK no one in the right state of mind would like to deliberately jeopardise the life styles of its people. Continuous rise in the oil prices is making direct impact on the people of the both countries and the world.

Thousands of British citizens are working and living in Middle East and bringing tax-free foreign exchange not to mention the special pay to the soldiers serving in Iraq. Some British soldiers have already paid their debts and looking to buy houses upon return from Iraq. Some of them unfortunately were not so lucky to come back alive.

Israel has forced millions of Arabs and non-Arabs out of their lands. There is no doubt that entity is involved in terrorism before its inception and in state terrorism after. When Gerald Kaufman a Jewish British MP from Manchester commented that something like, ‘there was a element of terrorism in the creation of Israel’. The Jewish groups condemned him.

British Muslims feels cornered and judged after 9/11, but no one questions loyalties of the British Jews, no one cares how British economic and national interests are being compromised. Few days ago a British born Major of the Israeli Army died in fighting with Lebanese Hizbullah. We don’t know how many British Jews go to Israel serve in the IDF and come back. We don’t know how many of them have been involved in killings of innocent men, women and children in Israeli occupied Palestine. That can lead to involvement in terrorism by a state under international law. We have no guarantee that these Israeli army trained soldiers’ will not turned against United Kingdom at any stage in future.

We have the examples of terrorist attack on King David Hotel, spying on US Navy by a former US citizen and now Israeli citizen Jonathan Pollard, serving life sentence in US prison, sinking of USS Liberty by Israel. There is the cost of Israel in American lives. Israeli aircraft and torpedo boats attacked on the USS Liberty in which 34 Americans were killed and 171 wounded on the fourth day of the Six-Day War of June 1967.The ship operated by the U.S. Navy for the National Security Agency to monitor Israel and Arab military communications during the fighting. Its wheel is displayed in Israeli Navy Museum reportedly.

According to a report by Christian Science monitor, “It is a proven fact that the Israeli government has obtained secret U.S. military technology, which Israel has sold to other countries. The U.S. sent Patriot missile defence batteries on an emergency basis to help defend Israel during the Gulf War; the Israelis seem to have sold the Patriot missile technology to China, according to the U.S. State Department’s inspector general. As a result, the U.S. has been forced to develop a whole new generation of missile technology able to penetrate the defences China has developed as a result of the Israeli treachery’”.

“The report further suggests that, ‘In the 1997 fiscal year Israel received $3 billion from the foreign aid budget, at least $525 million from other U.S. budgets, and $2 billion in federal loan guarantees. So the 1997 total of U.S. grants and loan guarantees to Israel was $5.5 billion. That’s $15,068,493 per day, 365 days a year. If you add its foreign aid grants and loans, plus the approximate totals of grants to Israel from other parts of the U.S. federal budget, Israel has received since 1949 a grand total of $84.8 billion, excluding the $10 billion in U.S. government loan guarantees it has drawn few years ago.

And if you calculate what the U.S. has had to pay in interest to borrow this money to give to Israel, the cost of Israel to U.S. taxpayers rises to $134.8 billion, not adjusted for inflation. Put another way, the nearly $14,630 every one of 5.8 million Israelis had received from the U.S. government by October 31, 1997, cost American taxpayers $23,241 per Israeli. That’s $116,205 for every Israeli family of five”.

Coming back to Britain I don’t understand, how some British National Jewish MPs living on British taxpayer’s money, publicly support another country as if they are member’s of parliament of that country not Britain. I think it is high time that British government should wake up and take matters seriously. No doubt there will be anti –Semitic blackmail and it will be hard for some to counter. I think if British State / Government act fairly with openness there will be enormous public support from quite majority including 1.8 million British Muslims. Its not necessary that puppet regimes in Middle East will always be in power, that can change with the public pressure.

Policy makers should keep British economic and security interests in mind all the times and I am sure they do. It may be the politicians like Tony Blair and others ignores public opinion and international law in love of Bush and Israel. British public and specially British Muslims have not doubt in their mind that ‘Blair acted unfairly in support of Israel’. Labour party has already lost its members and more are on the way out of labour party because of Tony Blair’s unilateralist policies in Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine and Lebanon.

British security services keep an eye on the activities of all those elements that could or are harming Britain’s national and economic interests specifically in Middle East and with entire Muslim World. Britain is the second largest investor in Pakistan and investment is growing.

(Dr Shahid Qureshi is senior analyst with BBC and chief editor of The London Post. He writes on security, terrorism and foreign policy. He also appears as analyst on Al-Jazeera, Press TV, MBC, Kazak TV (Kazakhstan), LBC Radio London. He wrote his MA thesis on ‘Political Thought of Imam Khomeini’ and visited Tehran University. He is PhD in ‘Political Psychology’ also studied Law at a British University)

Views expressed are not of The London Post

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