Sunday, 1 November 2009

Labour’s secret scheme to build multicultural Britain

Can the recent success of the British National party be explained by the misguided immigration policy of the government? That was the killer question from the floor during the notorious episode of Question Time 10 days ago. Four times it was put to Jack Straw, the justice secretary, and four times he avoided answering it. Until that evening I had thought Straw was a fairly decent sort of bloke, for a politician. No longer. In a man so central to the new Labour project, who has served in cabinet under Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, who has been home secretary and foreign secretary, evasion on such an important subject is shocking.

In his first evasion Straw waffled about Enoch Powell’s recruitment of immigrants to work for the National Health Service. But that was more than 40 years ago and, as David Dimbleby pointed out, Labour has been in power for the past 12 years and Straw should answer the question. Again he waffled irrelevantly, this time about identity.

Dimbleby challenged him for a third time: “Are you saying there is no worry about the scale of immigration in this country? Is that the point you’re making? I can’t get out what you’re saying.” Straw responded by saying that new figures show a reduction in the rate of increase in migration and added something about the new points system, all of which was offensively irrelevant.

So, for a fourth time, Dimbleby pressed him to answer the question. Again Straw failed to do so, but concluded by saying: “I don’t believe it is.”

It was a farce. As Baroness Warsi, the Muslim peer, protested: “That answer is not an honest answer.” Watching Straw’s face, I was puzzled about what he was thinking. Was he knowingly dishonest or had he somehow blinded himself to all the facts about the mass immigration of the past 10 years and its consequences? Read more
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