skip_previous play_arrow skip_next
00:00 00:00
  • cover play_arrow

    Rother Radio (128k) Love Local, Love Music!

  • cover play_arrow

    Rother Radio (64K) Love Local, Love Music!

  • cover play_arrow

    Hit Music Radio (128K) More Music Variety!

  • cover play_arrow

    Hit Music Radio (64K) The Best Variety of Hits!

UK News

Tory MP and ex-soldier gets round of applause for emotional Afghanistan Commons speech


share close

A Conservative MP who served in Afghanistan received a round of applause after delivering an emotional speech in an emergency Commons debate on the crisis there.

Tom Tugendhat told MPs the past week has seen him, like many veterans, “struggle through anger, grief and rage” as events in Afghanistan unfolded.

Live updates as MPs debate Afghanistan crisis

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

‘We will judge Taliban by its actions, not words’

“The feeling of abandonment, of not just a country but the sacrifice that my friends made,” the MP for Tonbridge and Malling in Kent said.

Mr Tugendhat said he had seen “good men go into the earth, taking with a part of me and a part of all of us”.

The Taliban takeover, he added, has “torn open” old wounds and “left them raw”.

Parliament has been recalled to discuss the crisis in Afghanistan following the Taliban’s rapid takeover of the country at the weekend.

More on Afghanistan

Mr Tugendhat reserved particular criticism for Joe Biden, saying it was “shameful” for the US president to “call into question the courage of the men I fought with”.

“Those who have not fought for the colours they fly should be careful about criticising those who have,” he said.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Biden blames Afghan army’s unwillingness to fight

In an address to the nation on Monday, Mr Biden said the Afghan military had “collapsed, sometimes without trying to fight”.

“American troops cannot and should not be fighting in a war and dying in a war that Afghan forces are not willing to fight for themselves,” the president added.

Mr Tugendhat said the UK could work with other countries, independent of the US, adding: “We can set out a vision, clearly articulate it, for reinvigorating our European NATO partners, to make sure that we are not dependent on a single ally, on the decision of a single leader, that that we can work together with Japan and Australia, France and Germany, with partners large and small and make sure we hold the line together.”

The MP recalled his time as an advisor to the governor of Helmand province, remembering the “joy” the opening of schools for girls brought to families.

“I didn’t understand it until I took my own daughter to school about a year ago,” he said.

“There was a lot of crying when she first went in, but I got over it and it went OK. I’d love to see that continue.”

Follow the Daily podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Spreaker

He said he wanted to leave MPs with a second, “harder” image, continuing: “It’s one that the forever war that has just reignited could lead to.

“It is the image of a man whose name I never knew, carrying a child who had died hours earlier – carrying this child into our fire base and begging for help.

“There was nothing we could do. It was over. This is what defeat looks like when you no longer have the choice of how to help.

“This doesn’t need to be defeat but at the moment it damn well feels like it.”

 Sky News

© Sky News 2021

Written by: Rother Radio News

Previous post

UK News

Where can you travel? Who will have us? And what are the restrictions?

The UK government is relaxing the rules for travel abroad - but many countries continue to impose restrictions on British travellers.Search for your destination in the grey box below to see entry restrictions and quarantine requirements.The colour of the country's name reflects whether it is on the government's current green, amber or red list for travel to England. This traffic light system ends on 4 October. There may be restrictions […]