My thoughts today are with all our Members of Parliament, of all parties. They know the consequences of their vote and they know, whichever way they vote, they will either be accused of the 'murder of innocents' or of being 'apologists for terrorism'.
The people making these hurtful accusations will have given little if any consideration to the turmoil and mental anguish every MP (certainly all those I know personally) have gone through over recent months if not years. MPs are parents too. To accuse them of not caring or considering the human suffering is to dehumanise them to an extent which is itself inhumane. And when I hear the Left say that our Ministers want a war as their friends are shareholders in defence companies and will be enriched by the conflict I feel physically sick. And they say we are the 'nasty party'.
Much to the surprise of my friends I have never wanted to be a Member of Parliament as I don't think I would have the courage to make the type of decisions our MPs must regularly make. Nor would I have the patience to deal with the angry mob who will be first in line to condemn and accuse, whichever way the vote goes.
The majority of those waiving placards "Don't Bomb Syria" and proclaiming "Not in My Name" have never, and will never, offer themselves for leadership. Chanting abuse from the safety of a barricade is not courageous or strong. When they slink off to their homes no-one will know who they are or what they believe. If the terrorists strike London and hundreds are murdered it won;t be them paraded in front of the angry nation explaining why Britain didn't act in the face of terrorism. Unlike MPs they won't be recognised in the streets and shops and abused for their beliefs. Nor will they be forced to defend those views at the ballot box. Voting for military action in the certain knowledge that many will be killed and that you will be personally blamed and hated by thousands requires courage and strength.
We are fortunate to have MPs from all sides who are willing to stand up for what they believe. Regardless of Party they deserve our respect.