At the moment, the need to stop the bloodshed is far greater than any desire for perfect multifaceted Muslim nations. But, if there is a hope of fixing Iraq's damaged democracy and creating an Iraq and a Syria where Kurds, Shia and Sunni Muslims can live in peace together, then the UK and the US need to learn its lessons and keep our distance.
Taking a picture with that newspaper was one of two things: either an act of stupidity by a busy, badly-advised man who wasn't thinking straight, or, much more worryingly, a cynical act of hypocrisy, shamelessly courting voters, in contrast to his own previous pronouncements on the values of the group which runs this particular newspaper.
When the outlook is bleak, and has seemingly been ever thus, reacting positively is not a simple task. Faced with this in our personal lives, most of us seek personal and professional support. Rarely would we proceed headlong into the abyss manically cackling that, if we just stick to the plan, all will be well. Throw in a moment of existential reflection and this mix has all the ingredients for a tragic end...
Mr Cameron wants to show to his increasingly anti-European Conservative Party and to the Murdoch press as well as the other Europhobe media in London that he can be tough in Europe. Once again he wants to boast that a British prime minister can impose a veto against a candidate for the post of Commission president. London is back dictating to Europe what is permitted and what is forbidden.
Education secretary Michael Gove recently declared that all 20,000 primary and secondary schools in the UK, stating that this government 'will put the promotion of British values at the heart of what every school has to deliver for children'. But this raises several questions, most importantly: what actually are "British" values?
I'm tired of getting up in the morning and hearing of the latest Muslim plot to take over the school/the city/the world (delete as appropriate); tired of being told that praying five times a day at a mosque is extremist; tired of being treated like being a Muslim is like having some kind of disease (and if you go to Pizza Express you might catch it too, sorry about that). Having a long beard or wearing a niqab may well be religiously conservative but it is not extremist. And there is no evidence that religious conservatism within Islam leads to violence and extremism.
The tweet highlighting this real human suffering, which prompted Conor Burns MP to complain to the charity commission, was not part of an advertising campaign or series of billboard posters as has been reported in some quarters... As a resolutely non-partisan organisation, we emphatically reject the charge that it favoured one political party over another. Rather it relayed what we know about the factors behind people needing food aid.
You had better choose your boss carefully. Your reputation and your future job prospects are inextricably linked to that boss' integrity, quality and loyalty. In Cunningham's case, it is not yet clear whether she acted with her boss' consent or prior knowledge. More likely, Cunningham acted out of her own, misguided loyalty to her leader.
The Tory-led Government's complacency on crime is misplaced while crime is still too high and costs us all too much. By focusing on prevention we can cut the number of victims, cut crime, and cut the overall cost to the country as well.
What these Conservative alliances really show, then, is not the increasing likelihood of any UK parliamentary coalition with UKIP, but the unawareness - or even ignorance or apathy - of British voters towards European politics.
Tony Blair has now set out his stall on Europe. It attacks the big issues, but it may be that he comes with too much history, baggage as well as too many enemies for it to progress any further. Who else is there?
David Cameron has got me singing an old TV theme tune all morning. It's from the wonderful Roy Castle's Record Breakers: 'If you wanna be the best, if you wanna beat the rest, dedication's what you need...'
Yesterday, along with many other MPs and Cabinet Ministers I made my fourth visit to Newark to support Robert Jenrick, our Conservative candidate for the by-election. In the early hours of this morning we got the result we were fighting for! Robert will now join us in Parliament to work hard for his Newark constituents and we look forward to seeing him next week.
I'm not a particularly political person. I am not a Marxist, a Socialist, a Conservative, a Liberal...I find it all a bit bewildering to be honest. And I'm not alone. For though most people have a plethora of views about the huge problems facing the country at the moment...
The relaxing hammock bear of news Nobody likes to admit they're wrong, but whether it's a team of footballers' passport numbers being printed on a s...
My Lords and Members of the House of Commons, My government's legislative programme will make a valiant attempt to strengthen the economies of London and the South East in order to benefit the wealthiest in society. Despite the fact that debt will continue to increase and my Chancellor has borrowed more money than he forecast, my ministers will continue with the pretence that their long term economic plan may eventually reduce the deficit... My Government will also continue to cut taxes for the rich whilst failing to tackle the financial insecurity of low wages, the rise of part time, temporary work, unscrupulous employment practices and above all, zero-hours contract abuses.