When I was told that for a second year module I would have to start a blog and start writing on what interested me I was pretty apprehensive. For one I’d never blogged before and for two I didn’t really back myself, writing frequently, on what interests me and what I hold passions for.
However, after having a little think I then became pretty open to the idea; and generally pretty excited at the prospect of this. The idea of being away from the strict and regimented essay form I’ve become accustomed to, with laborious referencing, is a breath of fresh air and to be able to type at will on interests of mine is somewhat liberating.
I am not one who usually publishes openly on thoughts, especially my political inclinations and my thoughts and opinions on both domestic and foreign affairs. But there seems no better time than in my second year at Southampton University- and hopefully people will find my thoughts and opinions both interesting and engaging!
So after my (relatively) brief introduction; here goes!
This past Sunday (11/10/2015) I noticed one of Britain’s newspapers- the Daily Star, had an ‘exclusive’ that RAF fighters operating over Iraq currently; and potentially in the near future: Syria, have been authorised by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to fire upon their Russian equivalents if potentially endangered. To me this is stating the complete obvious. The fact that a newspaper can run this as an exclusive is near on embarrassing. I mean, how can RAF pilots being authorised to defend themselves in potentially life threatening situations come as news to anybody?
This same status-quo exists over U.K. sovereign airspace, the RAF are allowed to use deadly force against potential Russian aggressors- and rightly so. Although, a different scenario is clearly at play in Syria it’s a situation we are all very aware of, and I’m sure the same applies to Russian pilots in face of danger from U.K., U.S. or French aircraft and vice versa- you get the point
I just found it ridiculous how a national newspaper could print on their front page ‘RAF Jets cleared to fire on Russians’ like there is some impending third world war on the horizon. Clearly all parties involved in the complex situation in Syria will be aiming to avoid any unnecessary escalations with each other.
This story was completely blown out of proportion, so much that the British attaché in Moscow was summoned!
I just found this an interesting example of how the media, albeit a tabloid, could manipulate a story and cause, potentially, such issues.