"The application of violence to defeat the enemies of the nation has become worryingly unpopular. Nothing wrong with fighting (yes killing) for values/what you believe in. The oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless deserve it. Join the fight; best thing you'll ever do," Plymouth MP Johnny Mercer wrote.
The application of violence to defeat the enemies of the nation has become worryingly unpopular. Nothing wrong with fighting (yes killing) for values/what you believe in. The oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless deserve it. Join the fight; best thing you'll ever do. https://t.co/pkKHy32Sgi— Johnny Mercer MP (@JohnnyMercerUK) November 26, 2018
As he lamented the reduced popularity of violence in beating enemies, Mr. Mercer suggested that "at some point — somewhere — someone — is going to have to stand up to Russia in the traditional sense."
The MP's arguments caused uproar among UK politicians and public.
Emma Dent Coad, Labour MP for Kensington, said Mr. Mercers words were "deeply concerning."
"Given the rising threat of terrorism we have seen in Britain in recent years, and the fact that a member of parliament was murdered just two years ago, Johnny Mercer should withdraw and unreservedly apologise for these comments," Ms. Dent Coad said.
Mercer, who served 12 years in the army, was heavily criticized on Twitter:
Not forgetting the huge profits war brings to you and your associates pic.twitter.com/tOpbvPxIVi— Rabble Cat (@TheGraveside) November 27, 2018
You have no place as an MP Johnny. Just when I thought that politicians can't get any worse I see one banging war drums vehemently, in the full knowledge of the outcome of recent conflict. You betray our brave, injured, scarred servicemen and women.— Andy Doyle (@doyleysar) November 27, 2018
blocked for crassness. pic.twitter.com/yi4ZiEX6ui— Oxted Man #FBPE #peoplesvote (@panamadip) November 27, 2018
I doubt many of our forces agree with bombing civilians in Yemen, but they still support it happening as if they've flown planes themselves…— Murmeration (@matthud59) November 28, 2018
In response, the Tory MP argued that the media deliberately "mis-translated" his argument, adding that "fighting to defend our values and hard won freedoms (what you believe in) is a must if they are to continue in a violent world."
Depends who we're supporting/attacking. We have a history of supporting dictators or slavishly following the US against anyone they take against.— Worthers⚘ (@worth3016) November 29, 2018
On Wednesday, the former UK Chief of the Defence Staff and professional head of the British Armed Forces also argued in favor of Britain being better prepared militarily.
"Britain needs to rediscover the mentality that helped to win the Cold War if we are to deal effectively with emerging threats like Russia and Iran. All too often in recent years, Britain has found itself being caught by surprise by the actions of hostile states, whether it is Russian acts of aggression in Crimea and Ukraine, or Iranian meddling in the affairs of pro-Western Arab countries, such as the Gulf states," Lord Richards of Herstmonceux argued.