Yesterday we reported on a senior military sting operation in the UK. The Times organised the operation and apparently filmed a handful of former British senior military officers breaking the rules regarding lobbying. There was an instant flurry of activity, denying wrongdoing, and even the Government Defence Secretary denying these people had any influence but today one has resigned.
The first blood is the president of the Royal British Legion, Lt Gen Sir John Kiszely. He may not be the last.
Sir John has said that in light of the Times revelations he feels it would be "inappropriate" to continue in the British Legion role, which he has held since 2009.
All the men involved in the undercover filming appeared to be saying that they could influence decision making over contracts. According to the BBC, "Sir John was shown saying he would be able to speak to the prime minister, the defence secretary and the chief of the defence staff at a Remembrance Day event. "You are standing there waiting for the Queen with nothing else to talk about," he said."
How many times do you think such things have happened? How come these people have always been knighted?
In his resignation letter Sir John has said that his claims of influence were exaggerated. Of course most of us will wonder, were they? In the UK we have seen this type of thing so often in recent years. There was the Tory Party Co Treasurer Peter Cruddas, back in March 2012, caught on undecover filming, offering ministerial access for cash and then back pedaling and saying that he was exaggerating.
You wonder when they will learn and how many more stings they will fall for. Of course it is good that they do or we would never find out their shenanigans.
One of the others involved in the lobbying accusations is Lord Dannatt. He was a David Cameron advisor, before the 2010 UK election. According to the Sunday Times Dannatt, “candidly talked about sidestepping a ban on discussion of a £400 million contract by 'targeting' the MoD’s top civil servant, with whom he went to school”.
Now why does that not surprise us?
Do not forget this news. The government will hope we all do. Instead wait and see what action if any is taken against these "fat cats".
More at the BBC here
Lobbying allegation details here
Based in Yorkshire, in the middle of the UK, almost, this blogger offers her own unique perspective on life in GB
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