After waking up to the news this morning I couldn’t just sit back and not contact you. It is so distressing to see the scenes in Ukraine. My thoughts are with the Ukrainian people and their families who call the UK home. We must be there for them at this time.
We now face the biggest security crisis in Europe since the Second World War with Britain in a weakened and compromised position.
We have a government that is utterly compromised by taking Russian cash to fund its elections. It is telling that our government’s first response was a fraction of the sanctions sought by EU leaders.
It is led by an inveterate liar, currently being investigated under police caution, lacking any moral authority to speak on behalf of our country.
Above all, this government has undermined European security, not just by walking out of the main framework for cooperating with its neighbours, but by doing so in such a way as to engender mistrust and distance us from our friends and allies.
The EU Withdrawal Agreement’s Political Declaration in which both the UK and EU committed to "establish a broad, comprehensive and balanced security partnership" that would allow them to work together on "evolving threats, including serious international crime, terrorism, cyber-attacks, disinformation campaigns, hybrid threats, the erosion of the rules-based international order and the resurgence of state-based threats".
This is exactly the threat that Putin poses to Ukraine and the rest of Europe.
Boris Johnson reneged on that agreement.
It's another example, not that we needed it, of how Brexit isn’t working. It's another example of how Brexit has weakened Britain, undermined our friends and allies, and played its part in breaking such a hard-earned peace in Europe.
Peace and prosperity. We spoke about it so often in the 2016 referendum campaign. We spoke about how together we are a stronger force on the international stage.
Just as European Movement president Lord Heseltine has said, once there was a time, not so long ago, that the United Kingdom would have led in the defence of European democracy. It has now absented itself, just as it will on every other threat facing our world that yearns for strength through international union.
It is why we must do everything we can to reverse it.
Richard Corbett CBE
European Movement UK