Boris Johnson: Nile Gardiner discusses future governance
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Nile Gardiner, who served as a foreign policy researcher for the Iron Lady from 2000 to 2002, responded to Tony Blair’s former spin doctor Alistair Campbell on Twitter to argue the “UK is leading Europe in confronting Putin’s Russia”. His comments come after Remainer-in-Chief Campbell claimed on March 24: “As ever the Kremlin playing the UK like a fiddle.
“The powers they fear are US, China and EU especially France and Germany.
“Pretending Johnson is anti-Russian is part of trolling the others and seeking to sew division between UK and rest of EU and NATO.
“Now watch the UK Government help them.”
Responding on March 27, Mr Gardiner said: “Delusional crazy talk from @campbellclaret.
“UK is leading Europe in confronting Putin’s Russia and supporting the people of Ukraine.
“Bitter Remainers still cannot accept the democratic decision of British people to leave the EU, and the fact that Brexit Britain is a great power.”
The spat between Campbell and Gardiner comes just a few weeks after polling data suggested Ukrainians consider the UK a key ally in their fight against Russia.
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More than half of Ukrainians said they thought Britain had been doing enough to help Kyiv, according to a recent survey by Lord Ashcroft.
In comparison, less than half of respondents indicated they thought the European Union and the United States had been doing enough.
Brexit Britain also received praise earlier on in the Ukraine crisis.
Parliamentarians in the Rada held up two Union Jacks alongside flags from NATO, Canada, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Tukey and the USA to voice their gratitude for British support.
Even Barack Obama’s ex-ambassador to the EU, Antony Gardner, himself a critic of the UK’s departure from the Brussels bloc, noted how Brexit Britain had responded decisively to events in Ukraine.
Earlier this year, Mr Gardner said: “As bad as Brexit has been, I fully admit that a significant upside is that the UK can act swiftly in foreign affairs including Ukraine rather than being dragged into endless EU waffle.”
Throughout the crisis, London has also continued to push for its allies to impose tough sanctions on Moscow, often to the resistance of some EU member states.
Boris Johnson was at loggerheads with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz over plans to lock Russia out of the international banking system SWIFT.
Moscow’s expulsion, which was considered to be a part of “the largest and most severe package of economic sanctions that Russia has ever seen”, was eventually agreed to after Berlin and Rome dropped their opposition to the move.
However, Mr Johnson recently came under fire for comparing Ukraine’s struggle against Russia to Britons voting for Brexit in a speech at a Tory Party spring conference event in Blackpool.
The Prime Minister said: “I know that it’s the instinct of the people of this country, like the people of Ukraine, to choose freedom, every time. I can give you a couple of famous recent examples.
“When the British people voted for Brexit in such large, large numbers, I don’t believe it was because they were remotely hostile to foreigners.
“It’s because they wanted to be free to do things differently and for this country to be able to run itself.”
Lord Gavin Barwell, Theresa May’s Remain-supporting ex-chief of staff, said voting in a referendum was not “in any way comparable with risking your life in a war”.
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Meanwhile, ex-Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko told ITV: “How many citizens of United Kingdom died because of Brexit? Zero.
“Can you imagine how many Ukrainians died [when] they met Putin aggression?
“Only today we have 150 children killed by Russian soldiers and by Russian artillery.
“Only during the last week 2,000 children from Mariupol were captured and delivered back to Russia.
He added: “Can I ask you how many houses were destroyed because of Brexit? We have whole cities that were completely erased… with this situation please no comparison.”
The UK has also faced calls to do more to help tackle the humanitarian crisis which has followed on from Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.
The first set of Ukrainian refugees arrived in Britain last week after more than 150,000 people registered their interest in hosting families fleeing the conflict.
In contrast, recent data from the United Nations suggests over 2.2million Ukrainians have entered neighbouring Poland and a further 586,000 have arrived in Romania.
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