IoS letters, emails & online postings (12 May 2013)

Share

Any of the benefit built up by our military intervention in Afghanistan has been undermined by the incomprehensible attitude of our government towards the interpreters, without whom the job of the soldiers on the ground would have been impossible.

The Taliban are simply waiting in the wings for our departure, and no mercy will be shown to anyone who has helped the British forces. They and their families genuinely need asylum, and should be offered it, without a moment of hesitation, as a gesture of gratitude.

When David Cameron indicates that he is, in essence, willing to abandon them to their fate, it erodes all faith in the integrity of the British nation, and shames the soldiers on the ground who must walk away from their colleagues, at the behest of their government, knowing full well what reprisals await the men who have risked their lives beside them in the hope that their country will benefit in the end.

Public outrage brought about a change of heart regarding the Iraqi interpreters, and, with the help of the press, may be brought to bear to do the same for our Afghan helpers.

Sierra Hutton-Wilson

Evercreech, Somerset

While the first phase of the High Speed 2 rail line from London to Birmingham has been given the go-ahead by the Government with the announcement of a hybrid Bill in last week's Queen's Speech, there is still no certainty on the second phase of the project from Birmingham further north or to Heathrow.

Progressing with the HS2 project in this piecemeal fashion creates a large amount of uncertainty and risks Phase 2 never getting further than the drawing board. This risk is important to minimise, as only in Phase 2 will the main benefits of HS2 be delivered.

The Government must commit itself to the entire route if HS2 is to have any chance of being the much-needed spine for successful transport integration.

Prof Phil Blythe

Chair, Transport Policy Panel

Institution of Engineering and Technology

London WC2

John Rentoul says that the recent local election results suggest that "Labour is doing less well than the polls would have predicted". But that's because of the lower turnout at local elections, which always benefits the Tories whose supporters are more likely to go out and vote.

Here in the constituency of North East Lincolnshire, this was shown most clearly at the general election of 2010. Labour's Austin Mitchell saw his 7,654 parliamentary majority cut to just 714, while at the same time the higher turnout saw the number of Labour councillors jump from four to 10, despite only a third of the seats being up for grabs. I don't think Ed Miliband needs to be worried yet.

Tim Mickleburgh

Grimsby, Lincolnshire

Amol Rajan explains that he has converted to only part-time vegetarianism because he has to write restaurant reviews (The New Review, 28 April). Amol could be 100 per cent vegetarian and still do restaurant reviews, by observing how well restaurants cater for vegetarians. That would encourage those who don't cater for vegetarians so well to pull up their socks.

Sandra Busell

Edinburgh

In Margareta Pagano's article last week on tax avoidance by Google, she stated that it is not as easy to boycott Google as it is to avoid buying coffee from Starbucks. That's true, but it is possible to significantly reduce one's use of Google's search engine. I use search engines quite a lot, and I find that for two-thirds of my searches DuckDuckGo does the job perfectly well. I'm not sure about Bing, as that is owned by Microsoft which I believe is also accused of tax avoidance. I'm sure readers will have other suggestions.

Patrick Cosgrove

Chapel Lawn, Shropshire

Amused and entertained as I usually am by Janet Street-Porter, I wonder whether she got her Boots confused with her colourful footwear last week (Editor at Large, 5 May). I think she'll find that Kate Swann has just stepped down from WH Smith rather than Boots. Boots is headed up by Stefano Pessina.

Alan Dorey

Verwood, Dorset

Have your say

Letters to the Editor, The Independent on Sunday, 2 Derry Street, London W8 5HF. Email: sundayletters@independent.co.uk. Online: independent.co.uk/dayinapage/2013/May/12

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Spanish Speaking

£17000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - German Speaking

£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Japanese Speaking

£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you are fluent in Japanese a...

Recruitment Genius: Graphic Designer - Immediate Start

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Nai or Oxi: whether Greece says Yes or No today its citizens will continue to struggle  

Greece crisis: Referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its lack of genuine legitimacy

Rupert Cornwell
George Osborne likes to think of himself as the greatest political mind of his generation  

Budget 2015: It takes a lot of hard work to be as lucky as George Osborne

John Rentoul
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test