Blair Delivers ‘Churchillian’ Speech to US Republicans


Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair wowed the audience at a joint House-Senate Republican retreat with a speech on how the West must combat the threat of Islamic Extremism.

Mr Blair told lawmakers that America should look to lead on the world stage, rather than be loved there, according to the Roll Call blog, in an address which one listener described as “Churchillian”.

According to Senator John Hoeven, Blair gave an “excellent” speech and said he called on Western liberal democracies to join together.

“He contends that…countries throughout the world, freedom-loving countries, are going to have to work together. There is going to have to be a sustained effort, it’s going to take time. There is both a military aspect to it, you have to stand up to Islamic extremism and terrorism where it occurs,” he said.

“And you also have to have the aspect where you reach out and connect with people in the Middle East on the idea of freedom and liberty and human rights.”

The Senator for North Dakota added that Mr Blair had “made the analogy that that is how we confronted communism.”

“During the Cold War there was both a military component … but then you also have to demonstrate the benefit of superior ideas and that it is in the interest of people regardless of religion … regardless of ethnicity or where they live,” Hoeven explained.

Also present at the event was Sen John Cornyn who was live tweeting some of the former Prime Minister’s remarks including the mass exodus of the civilian population in Syria because of the civil war.

Sen Cornyn also tweeted Mr Blair saying that “We haven’t caused terrorism but we are caught up in it” and that “Terrorism is, in part, a struggle within Islam and hostility to our way of life”

Mr Blair was introduced by Sen. John McCain at the conference in Hershey, Pennsylvania, who earlier this month was made Senate Armed Services chairman.

Both Mr Blair and Sen. McCain have stressed the importance of funding for internal security and the importance of ensuring that Defence budgets are adequately funded.

Making clear his view on intervention with Islamic extremists, he stated that “If they [terrorists] aren’t fought they grow; if not confronted, they over come.”

As the debates on dealing with Iran and Isil get underway, Blair’s call for strong American leadership and his reputation from the ‘special relationship’ with Former President George W Bush, will have given the party members present food for thought.