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After the Parliamentary debates on Syria

by
11 December 2015

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From Mr John Hamilton

Sir, — Two days after the Climate Change Conference opened in Paris, the House of Commons debated the proposal to extend the UK’s bombing to Syria. It was noticeable that, in the debate, there was no discussion of, or reference to, the likely environmental impact of such action. Nor indeed was there any consideration of the environmental damage that this conflict, and the others in the Middle East, have caused and are causing.

While the threat from terrorism is undoubtedly both real and immediate, the threat posed by man-made climate change is considerably greater, albeit, perhaps, for many, less apparent at the present time. All wars considerably degrade and harm both the local and general environment, and yet any consideration of their environmental impact rarely appears.

I await the day when the same thoroughness, detail, and energy that went into the Syria debate is devoted by Parliament to a debate on the problems posed by climate change and the substantive actions that need to be taken by us all to address them.

JOHN HAMILTON
29 High Street
Nash
Buckinghamshire MK17 0EP

 

From Mrs Yvonne Joan Craig

Sir, — The marathon Parliamentary debate discussing British action in Syria was addressed by many Members who said that their views were formed by their consciences, an unusual if welcome assertion, although relatively few attributed this to their Christian beliefs.

Most Members also affirmed that they respected the consciences of Muslims who followed an Islamic faith of peace, while deploring the perverted cruelty of Daesh.

This encouraging focus on conscience suggests that it is timely and vital for real historical and critical Qur’anic scholarship to expose the caricature of Islam which is luring so many jihadists towards terrorism.

Our own Christian academics have widely respected credentials in this area of discourse, and it would surely constrain Islam’s own scholars of moral integrity to produce and proclaim publicly the Prophet’s message of peace.

This is a vital media task in the face of the current critical challenge to uplift the Muslim conscience, while degrading pernicious ideology.

Our Christian conscience in considering how we respond to the needs of refugees and the perils of war is also challenged.

YVONNE JOAN CRAIG
40 Ridgmount Gardens
London WC1E 7AT

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