The following was sent by email to the Prime Minster on the day before this country took part in combined military attacks in Syria. A reply will no doubt come in due course:
“Despite the approval of the Cabinet, I remain opposed to this, after visiting Syria three times since 2015. If it was wrong to intervene in 2013, what has since changed to make it right now? Why should the matter be settled without reference to the House of Commons, whose vote in 2013 was decisive?
What will be achieved by limited strikes? Surely not the removal of President Assad, who will only have more support from the Syrian people, in reaction to yet more foreign attacks.
I am not convinced that military targets, such as gas production plants, missile and aircraft bases, can be identified sufficiently accurately so as to prevent civilian casualties.
Major attacks by aircraft or missiles will cause even more destruction than has already occurred (which is considerable). A situation could arise, which would call for a major UN Land Force to separate combatants and to provide the conditions for peace-building. I strongly doubt whether such a force, which would have to be large, could be organized and effectively deployed.
I do not think we should be driven by a wish to please the United States, particularly under its current President. It would be better to heed the advice of Peter Ford and other previous British Ambassadors to Syria.”