Tyrannical and thoroughly disagreeable though he is, Mr Putin stands for nationalistic pride, a crucial buffer against the perils of American foreign policy and a determination to defend a revived Russia on the world stage, and her citizens abroad. Three things I respect, and three things a shrinking world desperately needs.
Parliament, by delaying the rush to war has done a further great service by winning vital thinking time. This has enabled all of us, especially Government, to better comprehend the incredibly complex, multi-dimensional nature and history of the regional conflict... The evil of Islamic State must be beaten, their cruelty plumbs new depths of inhumanity and immorality, self-justified by perverted religious fundamentalism. To defeat them cannot happen on the battlefield alone. To do that we need to be smart and not repeat the mistakes of the past.