... and then I turn my attention to some other work. One or two of these points I have made before but they seem to bear repetition:
1. President Assad is not like Hitler, though he is a very nasty bloodthirsty dictator. For one thing, he has not invaded Austria, Czechoslovakia or Poland. It is not rational to compare every international crisis with 1938 - 39. They are different and we have to think about them differently. (NB. Let us not forget that highly respectable historians think that Britain made a mistake in declaring war on September 3, 1939 but that is another story.)
2. Following on from that: Syria is not in the Balkans and the situation there is not the same as it was in former Yugoslavia throughout the nineties. Therefore, any comparison in required action is invalid. Or, in other words, everything is not just like everything else in international affairs and each situation has to be judged separately.
3. The argument of "no meddling" is meaningless in that it also says that every situation is just like every other. Sometimes we have to meddle and sometimes not. It is not the fact that this is meddling that is the problem, as I see it, but that we have no clear idea why we should do so, on whose side we want to meddle and what we hope to achieve as well as what our meddling should consist of. If those who want us to go in could answer those questions in a satisfactory fashion instead of wringing their hands and crying that we cannot just do nothing, then meddling might become an acceptable option to many more people. Certainly, it would to me, for whatever that might be worth [very little] as I do not oppose necessary intervention in principle.
4. Those who are calling for another vote "to erase the shame" are clearly not people who approve of parliamentary democracy and consider that the EU's way of running political affairs - make them vote over and over again until we get the result we want - is far better. I hope none of those people will ever present themselves as eurosceptics again.
5. Britain's position in the world does not depend on us rushing into every war and civil war that happens to have better photographers though, as we know, not all of those photographs are completely kosher, if I may use that word. It did not, for instance, benefit in the end from us going into Iraq as we were thrown out of there ignominiously and Basra had to be taken back by the Iraqi army with American support. [See numerous postings by the Boss over on EURef.]
6. It would be good to think that as a result of this fiasco we are going to start that long-delayed discussion and debate as to what our national interests are, what our position in the world should be and what our foreign policy is going to be. I have no great hopes of that happening.