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Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:50 pm on 26th February 2003.

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Photo of Julian Lewis Julian Lewis Shadow Minister (Defence) 4:50 pm, 26th February 2003

It must be said that in subsequent conflicts and confrontations, many of the very same people who are arguing against action now were arguing against it then. Those who said, in advance of the action that was eventually taken against the Hitlerite regime, that no action was justified get a bad press, because they are now regarded as having had no reasonable arguments. Let me assure you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, that if we could revisit the debates that took place in this House in the 1930s, we would hear arguments for appeasement just as sophisticated as those put forward today. Those arguments were wrong then, and they are wrong now. It will be a grave mistake if people think that the cause of peace is served by always avoiding conflict. Sometimes, the only way to bring about peace is to face up to the need for conflict, and this is one of those occasions.