| David Cameron |
David Cameron in full evening dress
David William Donald Cameron|
9 October 1966
London, United Kingdom
|Alma mater||Brasenose College (Oxford)|
• Nancy Arthur
• Florence(Template:Children details)
• Ian Donald Cameron|
• Mary Fleur Mount
|Member of||Bullingdon Club, Notting Hill Set|
David Cameron is the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and leader of the Conservative Party, representing Witney as its Member of Parliament (MP). Following the May 2010 General Election, when the Conservatives won 307 seats in a hung parliament, David Cameron eventually formed a coalition with the Liberal Democrats, the first coalition government of the United Kingdom since the Second World War. Aged 43 years, David Cameron thus became the youngest British Prime Minister since the Earl of Liverpool 198 years earlier.
On 7 February 2015, the Daily Mail announced that David Cameron had leaked details from the as yet unpublished Chilcot Inquiry report which "will be a 'devastating' indictment of the Blair Government". Sir John Chilcot confirmed that his report into the circumstances surrounding the March 2003 invasion of Iraq and its aftermath would be published on 6 July 2016.
Parliament was dissolved on 30 March 2015 ahead of the UK General Election that was held on Thursday 7 May 2015. With 37% of the votes, the Tories won 331 seats in parliament - 319 MPs elected in England, 11 in Wales and 1 in Scotland. David Cameron remained as PM of a 12-seat overall majority Conservative government. Ed Miliband's Labour won just 232 seats and were almost wiped out by Nicola Sturgeon's SNP which won 56 seats in Scotland, while Nick Clegg's Lib-Dems suffered major losses.
The main plank of the Tory election manifesto was David Cameron's promise of an 'In/Out' referendum on the UK's membership of the European Union which took place on 23 June 2016. Having urged the country to vote Remain in the EU Referendum and after his defeat by the Leave campaign (52% to 48%), David Cameron announced outside 10 Downing Street that he would step down as Prime Minister by the time of the Conservative conference in October, saying "fresh leadership" was needed.
- 1 Conservative Research Department
- 2 Seconded to Downing Street
- 3 PR at Carlton Communications
- 4 Standing for Parliament
- 5 Member of Parliament
- 6 Party leadership
- 7 Prime Minister
- 8 Political commentary
- 8.1 Allegations of social elitism
- 8.2 Cameron speaking in 2010
- 8.3 Raising teaching standards
- 8.4 PM's Lockerbie secret
- 8.5 Libya and Israel
- 8.6 Gay rights
- 8.7 Allegations of recreational drug use
- 8.8 Cameron and Andy Coulson
- 8.9 Cameron and Lord Ashcroft
- 8.10 Plots against leadership
- 8.11 Making up Syria policy "on the hoof"
- 8.12 Dodgy Dave
- 9 Cameron's 'personal hero'
- 10 PM touting for postal votes
- 11 A Document by David Cameron
- 12 An appointment by David Cameron
- 13 Related Documents
- 14 External links
- 15 References
Conservative Research Department
After graduation, Cameron worked for the Conservative Research Department between September 1988 and 1993. A feature on Cameron in The Mail on Sunday on 18 March 2007 reported that on the day he was due to attend a job interview at Conservative Central Office, a phone call was received from Buckingham Palace. The male caller stated, "I understand you are to see David Cameron. I've tried everything I can to dissuade him from wasting his time on politics but I have failed. I am ringing to tell you that you are about to meet a truly remarkable young man."
1989 South Africa trip
Although UN Security Council Resolution 418 of 4 November 1977 introduced a mandatory arms embargo against South Africa, requiring all states to refrain from "any co-operation with South Africa in the manufacture and development of nuclear weapons", it was with the help of the Israelis that the apartheid regime designed and built a total of 10 fully operational nuclear weapons. One device was successfully tested in 1979, which left 9 nuclear weapons in South Africa's stockpile. In August 1988, foreign minister Pik Botha announced that South Africa had "the capability to make one [a nuclear weapon]" should it want to do so. A month later, in September 1988, South Africa sent a letter to IAEA Director-General Hans Blix expressing willingness to accede to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) if certain conditions were met, primarily that South Africa be allowed to market its uranium subject to IAEA safeguards.
In what has been described as a sanctions-busting trip, David Cameron visited South Africa in 1989 accompanied by Conservative MP, Sir Kenneth Warren, and nuclear weapons inspector, Dr David Kelly who had made several earlier visits to South Africa when he was given access to the covert nuclear weapons research facility at Pelindaba, near Pretoria. The purpose of David Cameron's trip was to arrange for three of South Africa's nuclear weapons to be shipped to Oman, where the nukes would be stored in case they were required in Iraq. The remaining six nukes were destined to travel from South Africa to Chicago in the US. The next phase of the operation was that, once the weapons had left South African soil, the British Government would reimburse the South African firm Armscor and the British firm Astra through the middle man John Bredenkamp. At Government level it would be dealt with primarily by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) using Ministry of Defence money. In order to keep this out of Parliament and out of the public domain, Margaret Thatcher was asked to sign off these weapons in late 1990 under a special Urgent Operational Requirement (UOR) describing them as metal cylinders rather than nuclear bombs.
It was subsequently revealed that £17.8 million was siphoned from this secret nuclear deal into Conservative Party funds.
On 8 February 2015, it was revealed that the Chilcot Inquiry had been tasked specifically with tracking down those responsible for “misplacing” three nuclear weapons obtained from apartheid South Africa 25 years ago. Both David Cameron and Dr David Kelly are understood to have been involved in the diversion of these WMD which eventually became the pretext for the Iraq War.
Seconded to Downing Street
In 1991, David Cameron was seconded to Downing Street to work on briefing John Major for his then bi-weekly session of Prime Minister's Questions. One newspaper gave Cameron the credit for "sharper ... despatch box performances" by Major, which included highlighting for Major "a dreadful piece of doublespeak" by Tony Blair (then the Labour Employment spokesman) over the effect of a national minimum wage. He became head of the political section of the Conservative Research Department, and in August 1991 was tipped to follow Judith Chaplin as Political Secretary to the Prime Minister. However, Cameron lost to Jonathan Hill, who was appointed in March 1992. He was given the responsibility for briefing Major for his press conferences during the 1992 General Election. During the campaign, Cameron was one of the young "brat pack" of party strategists who worked between 12 and 20 hours a day, sleeping in the house of Alan Duncan in Gayfere Street, Westminster, which had been Major's campaign headquarters during his bid for the Conservative leadership. Cameron headed the economic section; it was while working on this campaign that Cameron first worked closely with Steve Hilton, who was later to become Director of Strategy during his party leadership. The strain of getting up at 4:45 am every day was reported to have led Cameron to decide to absent himself from politics in favour of journalism. The future Tory leader, whose credentials at Conservative Central Office were already well-established after periods working for Chancellor of the Exchequer Norman Lamont and Home Secretary Michael Howard, believed a stint in the private sector would benefit his political career.
PR at Carlton Communications
From July 1994 to February 2001, David Cameron was Director of Public Relations for Carlton Communications, now part of ITV. With no experience outside politics, he did what any old Etonian might do and worked his contacts. The mother of Cameron's then girlfriend Samantha, Lady Astor, was friends with Michael Green, then executive chairman of Carlton and one of Margaret Thatcher's favourite businessmen. Lady Astor suggested he hire Cameron, and Green, a mercurial millionaire, obliged. The 27-year-old was duly recruited on a salary of about £90,000 a year (the equivalent of more than £200,000 today).
In an interview with The Guardian Tim Allan, former Special Adviser to Tony Blair, said the future Tory moderniser held unapologetically Thatcherite views during this period, and displayed none of the informal sartorial style that would one day become his trademark. "He was never without a tie," Allan recalls, but then: :"Carlton was quite an old-fashioned company". Its plush Knightsbridge head office was dubbed "Carlton Towers" by envious employees based in less salubrious locations. Executives could eat in a private dining room, served by a butler summoned by pressing a button under the dining table. According to one former executive:
- "The quality of the food was fantastic, absolutely fantastic. First time I had butternut squash soup – you could stand your spoon in it. Beautiful paninis, beautiful breakfast selection, fresh fruit, you would come out of a meeting and stuff your pockets … [then] you'd go upstairs and say, 'You've got to cut your costs'."
- "There was a well-bred air about the place," another former executive remembers. "[Green] brought people in who were well-educated and had proper English voices, I don't think there were any regional variations – it was all very cut-glass, public-school."
Carlton's head office was a Tory enclave at a time when the party was facing political extinction. Rachel Whetstone, who worked for Norman Lamont along with Cameron, was also based there for a time; she is now married to Cameron's chief SPAD, Steve Hilton. The former colleague says:
- "Cameron was an upmarket guy, but they were all bloody upmarket at Carlton … they were all terribly posh. If they ever found a Labourite down there they would have hung him from the polenta machine in the kitchen."
As director of public relations, Cameron regularly lobbied ministers and was "in the room" according to former colleagues, when big decisions were made. They included the fateful decision to take on BSkyB, the pay-TV giant controlled by Rupert Murdoch, by launching a terrestrial alternative to Sky's satellite service called ONdigital (later renamed ITV Digital) in partnership with Granada Television. Allan, who had recently left No 10 for Carlton, where he did the same job as Cameron, said:
- "Cameron had a difficult brief. Working for Michael Green was challenging. It was a difficult business [situation] because the arrival of digital TV was big news and Sky was seen to be winning the battle quite quickly." ITV Digital's spectacular failure in May 2002, a year after Cameron was elected to the safe Conservative seat of Witney in Oxfordshire, would help to usher Green into early retirement.
Standing for Parliament
Having been approved for the Candidates' list, David Cameron began looking for a seat. He was reported to have missed out on selection for Ashford in December 1994 after failing to get to the selection meeting as a result of train delays. In early 1996, he was selected for Stafford, a new constituency created by boundary changes, which was projected to have a Conservative majority. At the 1996 Conservative Party Conference he called for tax cuts in the forthcoming Budget to be targeted at the low-paid and to "small businesses where people took money out of their own pockets to put into companies to keep them going". He also said the Party "should be proud of the Tory tax record but that people needed reminding of its achievements ... It's time to return to our tax-cutting agenda. The socialist Prime Ministers of Europe have endorsed Tony Blair because they want a federal pussy cat and not a British lion." When writing his election address, Cameron made his own opposition to British membership of the single European currency clear, pledging not to support it. This was a break with official Conservative policy but about 200 other candidates were making similar declarations. Otherwise, Cameron kept closely to the national party line. He also campaigned using the claim that a Labour Government would increase the cost of a pint of beer by 24p; however, the Labour candidate, David Kidney, portrayed Cameron as "a right-wing Tory". Stafford had a swing almost the same as the national swing, which made it one of the many seats to fall to Labour: David Kidney had a majority of 4,314. In the round of selection contests taking place in the run-up to the 2001 general election, Cameron again attempted to be selected for a winnable seat. He tried out for the Kensington and Chelsea seat after the death of Alan Clark, but did not make the shortlist. He was in the final two but narrowly lost at Wealden in March 2000, a loss ascribed by Samantha Cameron to his lack of spontaneity when speaking. On 4 April 2000 Cameron was selected as prospective candidate (PPC) for Witney in Oxfordshire. This had been a safe Conservative seat but its sitting MP Shaun Woodward (who had worked with Cameron on the 1992 election campaign) had "crossed the floor" to join the Labour Party; newspapers claimed Cameron and Woodward had "loathed each other", although Cameron's biographers Francis Elliott and James Hanning describe them as being "on fairly friendly terms". Cameron, advised in his strategy by friend Catherine Fall, put a great deal of effort into "nursing" his potential constituency, turning up at social functions, and attacking Woodward for changing his mind on fox hunting to support a ban. During the election campaign, Cameron accepted the offer of writing a regular column for The Guardian's online edition. He won the seat with a 1.9% swing to the Conservatives and a majority of 7,973.
Member of Parliament
Upon his election to Parliament, he served as a member of the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee, a prominent appointment for a newly elected MP. Cameron proposed that the Committee launch an inquiry into the law on drugs, and urged the consideration of "radical options". The report recommended a downgrading of Ecstasy from Class A to Class B, as well as moves towards a policy of 'harm reduction', which Cameron defended. Cameron determinedly attempted to increase his public visibility, offering quotations on matters of public controversy. He opposed the payment of compensation to Gurbux Singh, who had resigned as head of the Commission for Racial Equality after a confrontation with the police; and commented that the Home Affairs Select Committee had taken a long time to discuss whether the phrase "black market" should be used. However, he was passed over for a front-bench promotion in July 2002; Conservative leader Iain Duncan Smith did invite Cameron and his ally George Osborne to coach him on Prime Minister's Questions in November 2002. The next week, Cameron deliberately abstained in a vote on allowing same-sex and unmarried couples to adopt children jointly, against a whip to oppose; his abstention was noted. The wide scale of abstentions and rebellious votes destabilised the Duncan Smith leadership. In June 2003, Cameron was appointed a shadow minister in the Privy Council Office as a deputy to Eric Forth, then Shadow Leader of the House. He also became a vice-chairman of the Conservative Party when Michael Howard took over the leadership in November of that year. He was appointed Opposition frontbench local government spokesman in 2004, before being promoted to the shadow cabinet that June as head of policy co-ordination. Later, he became Shadow Education Secretary in the post-election reshuffle. From February 2002 to August 2005 he was a non-executive director of Urbium PLC, operator of the Tiger Tiger bar chain.
Following the Labour victory in the May 2005 general election, Michael Howard announced his resignation as leader of the Conservative Party and set a lengthy timetable for the leadership election. Cameron announced on 29 September 2005 that he would be a candidate. Parliamentary colleagues supporting him included Boris Johnson, Shadow Chancellor George Osborne, Shadow Defence Secretary and deputy leader of the party Michael Ancram, Oliver Letwin and former party leader William Hague. His campaign did not gain wide support until his speech, delivered without notes, at the 2005 Conservative Party Conference. In the speech he vowed to make people "feel good about being Conservatives again" and said he wanted "to switch on a whole new generation." In the first ballot of Conservative MPs on 18 October 2005, Cameron came second, with 56 votes, slightly more than expected; David Davis had fewer than predicted at 62 votes; Liam Fox came third with 42 votes; and Kenneth Clarke was eliminated with 38 votes. In the second ballot on 20 October 2005, Cameron came first with 90 votes; David Davis was second, with 57; and Liam Fox was eliminated with 51 votes. All 198 Conservative MPs voted in both ballots. The next stage of the election process, between Davis and Cameron, was a vote open to the entire party membership. Cameron was elected with more than twice as many votes as Davis and more than half of all ballots issued; Cameron won 134,446 votes on a 78% turnout, to Davis's 64,398. Although Davis had initially been the favourite, it was widely acknowledged that his candidacy was marred by a disappointing conference speech. Cameron had made a well-received speech without notes (which The Daily Telegraph said "showed a sureness and a confidence that is greatly to his credit"). Cameron's election as the Leader of the Conservative Party and Leader of the Opposition was announced on 6 December 2005. As is customary for an Opposition leader not already a member, upon election Cameron became a member of the Privy Council, being formally approved to join on 14 December 2005, and sworn of the Council on 8 March 2006. Cameron's appearance on the cover of Time in September 2008 was said by the Daily Mail to present him to the world as 'Prime Minister in waiting'.
The Conservatives had last won a general election in 1992. The general election of 2010 resulted in the Conservatives, led by Cameron, winning the largest number of seats (306). This was, however, 20 seats short of an overall majority and resulted in the nation's first hung parliament since February 1974. Talks between Cameron and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg led to an agreed Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition. On 11 May 2010, following the resignation of Gordon Brown as Prime Minister and on his recommendation, Queen Elizabeth II invited Cameron to form a government. At age 43, Cameron became the youngest British Prime Minister since Lord Liverpool, who was appointed in 1812. In his first address outside 10 Downing Street, he announced his intention to form a coalition government, the first since the Second World War, with the Liberal Democrats. Cameron outlined how he intended to "put aside party differences and work hard for the common good and for the national interest." As one of his first moves Cameron appointed Nick Clegg, the leader of the Liberal Democrats, as Deputy Prime Minister on 11 May 2010. Between them, the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats control 363 seats in the House of Commons, with a majority of 76 seats. On 2 June 2010, when Cameron took his first session of Prime Minister's Questions (PMQs) as Prime Minister, he began by offering his support and condolences to those affected by the shootings in Cumbria.
On 5 February 2011, Cameron criticised the failure of 'state multiculturalism', in his first speech as PM on radicalisation and the causes of "terrorism".
While Leader of the Conservative Party, Cameron has been accused of reliance on "old-boy networks" and attacked by his party for the imposition of selective shortlists of prospective parliamentary candidates. The Guardian has accused Cameron of relying on "the most prestigious of old-boy networks in his attempt to return the Tories to power", pointing out that three members of his shadow cabinet and 15 members of his front bench team were "Old Etonians". Similarly, The Sunday Times has commented that "David Cameron has more Etonians around him than any leader since Macmillan" and asked whether he can "represent Britain from such a narrow base." Former Labour cabinet minister Hazel Blears has said of Cameron, "You have to wonder about a man who surrounds himself with so many people who went to the same school. I'm pretty sure I don't want 21st-century Britain run by people who went to just one school." Some supporters of the party have accused Cameron's government of cronyism on the front benches. Sir Tom Cowie, working-class founder of Arriva and former Conservative donor, ceased his donations in August 2007 due to disillusionment with Cameron's leadership, saying, "the Tory party seems to be run now by Old Etonians and they don't seem to understand how other people live." In reply, Shadow Foreign Secretary William Hague said when a party was changing, "there will always be people who are uncomfortable with that process".
Cameron speaking in 2010
In a response to Cameron at Prime Minister's Questions in December 2009, Gordon Brown addressed the Conservative Party's inheritance tax policy, saying it "seems to have been dreamed up on the playing fields of Eton". This led to open discussion of "class war" by the mainstream media and leading politicians of both major parties, with speculation that the 2010 general election campaign would see the Labour Party highlight the backgrounds of senior Conservative politicians.
Raising teaching standards
At the launch of the Conservative Party's education manifesto in January 2010, Cameron declared an admiration for the "brazenly elitist" approach to education of countries such as Singapore and South Korea and expressed a desire to "elevate the status of teaching in our country". He suggested the adoption of more stringent criteria for entry to teaching and offered repayment of the loans of maths and science graduates obtaining first or 2.1 degrees from "good" universities. Wes Streeting, president of the National Union of Students, said "The message that the Conservatives are sending to the majority of students is that if you didn't go to a university attended by members of the Shadow Cabinet, they don't believe you're worth as much." In response to the manifesto as a whole, Chris Keates, head of teaching union NASUWT, said teachers would be left "shocked, dismayed and demoralised" and warned of the potential for strikes as a result.
PM's Lockerbie secret
Prime Minister David Cameron has a secret about Lockerbie. It’s a secret that explains why the PM was desperate to have Muammar Gaddafi blamed personally for the sabotage of Pan Am Flight 103 on 21 December 1988, and to have Gaddafi executed without a trial.
Three months after the Lockerbie bombing, the then Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and the rising star in Conservative Research Department, David Cameron, visited southern Africa. The past and future British Prime Ministers made a point of visiting the Rössing Uranium Mine in Namibia (illegally occupied by apartheid South Africa in defiance of UN Security Council Resolution 435). In 1989, the Rössing mine was jointly owned by Rio Tinto Group and the Iranian Government, and was supplying uranium to develop Iran’s nuclear programme. Mrs Thatcher was so impressed with the Rössing Uranium Mine that she declared it made her "proud to be British", a sentiment echoed by Mr Cameron. It has recently been reported that David Cameron concluded a secret nuclear deal with the apartheid regime during his visit in 1989.
On Wednesday 21 December 1988, Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations and UN Commissioner for Namibia, Bernt Carlsson, was on his way to the signing of the New York Accords which required South Africa to grant independence to Namibia. Newspaper reports quickly identified Bernt Carlsson as the highest profile of the 270 Lockerbie bombing victims. In the months leading up to his death, Carlsson had warned that he would start proceedings against the countries and firms which had been defying UN law over many years by stealing billions of pounds-worth of Namibia's natural resources. Among those facing huge UN compensation claims were the owners of the Rössing Uranium Mine: Rio Tinto Group and the government of Iran. The diamond mining giant De Beers and the apartheid regime were also liable. Because the UN Commissioner for Namibia was killed at Lockerbie, none of those prosecutions ever took place.
The latest evidence suggests that apartheid South Africa targeted Bernt Carlsson on Pan Am Flight 103  and that Libya was not responsible for the Lockerbie bombing. Which might explain why David Cameron was desperate to have Muammar Gaddafi blamed personally for the sabotage of Pan Am Flight 103 on 21 December 1988, and to have Gaddafi executed without a trial at the International Criminal Court.
Libya and Israel
On 14 May 2011, the same day that Mustafa Abdul Jalil - chief of Libya's Transitional National Council (TNC) - arrived in London for talks with Prime Minister David Cameron, it was revealed that the Israeli Defence Force (IDF) had signed an agreement with the TNC to supply the Libyan rebels with arms and military assistance. Under the terms of the agreement, the Israeli government undertook to encourage EU member states to formally recognise the TNC in Benghazi as the legitimate government of Libya. In return, the Libyan rebels have promised that Israel can establish a military base in the Green Mountain region of Eastern Libya, an area of outstanding natural beauty and bio-diversity that is rich in prehistoric, Greek, Roman and Islamic antiquity, or in Western Libya near the border with Algeria.
At the start of the Libyan unrest in February 2011, it was Abdul Jalil who provided the world's media with the most amazing sound-bite: "Gaddafi ordered the Lockerbie bombing". Although Abdul Jalil claimed he had the proof, he said: "It is not time to reveal everything now. I do not want to reveal the names involved, for the sake of the country." At the Downing Street meeting, did Cameron ask the scoundrel Abdul Jalil about Gaddafi ordering the Lockerbie bombing? It seems not.
Coincidentally, at the end of May 2011, Cameron stepped down as patron of the Jewish National Fund - the first British prime minister not to be patron of the charity in the 110 years of its existence. Despite these events, David Cameron is perhaps the most outspoken supporter of Israel in a whole generation of PMs. In a speech in 2011 Cameron said: "You have a Prime Minister whose commitment and determination to work for peace in Israel is deep and strong. Britain will continue to push for peace, but will always stand up for Israel against those who wish her harm". He said he wanted to reaffirm his "unshakable" belief in Israel within the same message. He also voiced his opposition to the Goldstone Report, claiming it had been biased against Israel and not enough blame had been placed on Hamas.
In May 2014, BSNews reported under the headline "Head of False Libyan Revolution Admits Gaddafi did not Kill Protesters" that Mustafa Abdul Jalil, Head of the National Transitional Council in Benghazi in 2011, had admitted:
- Gaddafi did not order the shooting that started the false revolution in Libya. Now after the destruction of Libya, Jalil admits to the world on Libyan Channel One that the protesters that were killed in Benghazi that caused the UN and NATO to attack Libya were killed by a group of spies and mercenaries who were not Libyan. He admits that he knew the truth at the time but it was done to take down the Libyan government and break the state. He admits that he was briefed in advance that this was going to happen and that the people of Libya did not recognise the dead protesters because they wore civilian clothes and there was no one who came to their funerals as they had no relatives or friends in Libya.
As we have been saying since February 2011, the so called revolution in Libya was a false flag. The Libyan people by large majority were happy and "safe". Islamic extremist groups were illegal in Libya. Now Libya is controlled by Islamic extremists groups (Al Qaeda, Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG), The Muslim Brotherhood, Ansar Al Sharia and others). The country is broken, there is no security, thousands have been imprisoned illegally and hundreds tortured to death. There is no government, there are no oil sales, 2 million are still in exile, psychopaths have taken the country and it is now considered a "grey state" – no borders and no government.
David Cameron was given a score of 36% in favour of lesbian, gay and bisexual equality by Stonewall in 2010. Cameron voted to retain Section 28 and voted against gay adoption, however he supported commitment for gay couples in a 2005 speech, and in October 2011 urged Conservative MPs to support gay marriage. In a keynote speech in Manchester he said that he backed gay marriage not in spite of his conservatism but because he is a conservative, and added it was about equality. In December 2012 he stated that he wanted to give religious groups the ability to host gay marriage ceremonies, and that he did not want to exclude gay people from a "great institution". In November 2012, Cameron and Nick Clegg agreed to fast-track legislation for introducing same-sex marriage. In 2013, the Bill was presented to the House of Commons and less than 50% of Conservative MPs backed his proposals for gay marriage including his own cabinet ministers Owen Paterson and David Jones.
Allegations of recreational drug use
During the leadership election, allegations were made that Cameron had used cannabis and cocaine recreationally before becoming an MP. Pressed on this point during the BBC television programme 'Question Time', Cameron expressed the view that everybody was allowed to "err and stray" in their past. During his 2005 Conservative leadership campaign he addressed the question of drug consumption by remarking that "I did lots of things before I came into politics which I shouldn't have done. We all did."
Cameron and Andy Coulson
In 2007 Cameron appointed Andy Coulson, former editor of the News of the World, as his director of communications. Coulson had resigned as the paper's editor following the conviction of a reporter in relation to illegal phone hacking, although stating that he knew nothing about it. In June 2010 Downing Street confirmed Coulson's annual salary as £140,000, the highest pay of any special adviser to UK Government. In January 2011 Coulson left his post, saying coverage of the phone-hacking scandal was making it difficult to give his best to the job. In July 2011 he was arrested and questioned by police in connection with further allegations of illegal activities at the News of the World, and released on bail. Despite a call to apologise for hiring Coulson by the leader of the opposition Ed Miliband, Cameron defended the appointment, saying that he had taken a conscious choice to give someone who had screwed up a second chance. On 20 July, in a special parliamentary session at the House of Commons, arranged to discuss the News of the World phone hacking scandal, Cameron said that he "regretted the furore" that had resulted from his appointment of Coulson, and that "with hindsight" he would not have hired him. Coulson was detained and charged with perjury by Strathclyde Police on 30 May 2012.
Cameron and Lord Ashcroft
In June 2012, shortly before a major Tory rebellion on House of Lords reform, journalist Peter Oborne credited Lord Ashcroft, owner of both the 'ConservativeHome' and 'PoliticsHome' websites with "stopping the Coalition working" by moving policy on Europe, welfare, education, taxation to the right. Prior to the 2010 election, Cameron gave Ashcroft a significant role in the election campaign but no post-election reward in the form of ministerial job. According to Oborne, Ashcroft, a "brutal critic of the Coalition from the start", had established "megaphone presence" in the on-line media, and Tories were now blaming the LibDems for blocking economic and welfare system reform. Oborne says the parties have separate and contradictory agendas – as exemplified by Michael Gove's education reforms intended for Tory ears only – and don't even consult each other. He believes Cameron's philosophy of liberal conservatism has been destroyed by "coordinated attacks on the Coalition" and "the two parties are no longer trying to pretend that they are governing together."
Plots against leadership
In United Kingdom local elections, 2012, the Conservative Party's share of the vote fell from 35% to 31%, losing control of several councils including Plymouth, Southampton, Harlow, Redditch, Worcester and Great Yarmouth, after a terrible few months for the government which included the Budget, the cash for access scandal and the Jeremy Hunt scandal with Labour increasing its lead in the polls. Many Conservative MPs spoke out because of this and Nadine Dorries warned the Prime Minister that a leadership challenge could happen. David TC Davies also joined in the criticism of Cameron's leadership "incompetence at the highest levels of Government". In the summer, chatter continued after the House of Lords reform rebellion and the resurgence of Boris Johnson during the 2012 Olympics. It was revealed that Boris Johnson and Zac Goldsmith had been talking about a possible leadership challenge to the Prime Minister, but both men denied it. Colonel Bob Stewart revealed that two Tory MPs had asked him to stand as a stalking-horse candidate against the Prime Minister. It was also revealed that the chairman of the 1922 Committee, Graham Brady, had received letters from 14 Tory MPs calling for a 'vote of no confidence' in the Prime Minister and Patrick Mercer was one of the signatories. Later that year, Brian Binley openly said that Cameron's leadership was like being a 'maid' to the Liberal Democrats and accused him of leading the party to defeat. In January 2013, it was revealed that Adam Afriyie was planning his own bid for the Tory leadership with the support of fellow MPs Mark Field, Bill Wiggin, Chris Heaton-Harris, Priti Patel and Dan Byles. He denied such bid, but it was also rumoured that up to 13 Tory MPs were considering their own bids for the leadership. After defeat at the Eastleigh by-election, it was revealed that 25 MPs were considering joining calls for a vote of no confidence by the summer. Theresa May was seen as a potential challenger for the leadership, after her speech to a ConservativeHome conference in March 2013. The next day, Liam Fox, made a speech to the Institute of Economic Affairs calling for a freeze in public spending to fund huge tax cuts, but many commentators also interpreted it as a Fox posturing for the leadership.
Making up Syria policy "on the hoof"
On 19 July 2015, a senior Tory accused David Cameron of making up Syria policy “on the hoof”, as the prime minister gave his clearest indication yet that he wanted to extend the British air campaign against ISIS. Julian Lewis, the chairman of the defence select committee, described the government’s strategy for combating ISIS as incoherent and called on Cameron to present a more considered strategy to parliament.
In 2015, Cameron warned British would-be jihadists that ISIS would “brainwash you, strap bombs to your body and blow you up”. Speaking to US television, Cameron said in 2015 that the UK should “step up and do more” in the fight against ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
Julian Lewis MP indicated that Cameron would have a tough job persuading MPs to endorse bombing of Syria, rejected by a 2013 vote in the Commons. On the BBC’s the 'World this Weekend', he said:
- “I think how I vote [on whether the UK should join US-led air strikes over Syria] will depend on whether the prime minister, instead of making this up "on the hoof" as has been the case I’m afraid up till now, presents parliament with an integrated strategy, approved jointly by the heads of the armed forces, as something that could produce a decisive result.”
Parliamentary authorisation has so far only been given to UK air strikes against ISIS in neighbouring Iraq, but on Friday a freedom of information request by the campaign group Reprieve revealed that UK pilots, embedded with coalition forces, had taken parts in missions over Syria.
Giving an interview to 'Meet the Press' on NBC on Sunday, Cameron acknowledged that he would need parliamentary approval for further action. But he promised to:
- “Destroy this caliphate, whether it is in Iraq or in Syria”, saying: “I want Britain to do more. Be in no doubt, we’re committed to working with you to destroy the caliphate in both countries.”
Cameron and Fallon have made it clear they are considering extending the military air campaign to Syria in the wake of the Tunisian beach massacre on 26 June, which claimed 30 British victims among the 38 dead.
“First of all we are able to take military action in Iraq because we are doing so at the invitation of the legitimate Iraqi government,” said Julian Lewis MP. “The problem in Syria is that the government here, the British government, doesn’t want to recognise the legitimacy of the Assad regime. But without the approval of the Assad regime there is an entirely different legal situation if we were to start getting involved in military action in Syria.”
David Cameron made a statement about the Panama Papers tax revelations in the House of Commons on Monday 11 April 2016, but did not convince one veteran MP.
- "Does the Prime Minister recall that at the time after he became Prime Minister under the coalition, at the time that he was dividing the nation between strivers and scroungers, I asked him a very important question about the windfall he received when he wrote off the mortgage on the premises in Notting Hill?
- "And I said to him he didn't write off the mortgage of the one the taxpayers were helping to pay for at Oxford. I didn't receive a proper answer then. Maybe Dodgy Dave will answer it now. And by the way..."
Speaker John Bercow asked the Bolsover MP to “think of another” word to describe Cameron. The 84-year-old replied, pointing at the Prime Minister:
- "This man has done more to divide this nation than anybody else. He’s looked after his own pocket. I still refer to him as Dodgy Dave. Do what you like."
Cameron's 'personal hero'
- "The Tory leader said it was the freedom fighter who led South Africa’s liberation struggle: 'For his grace and complete lack of bitterness,' oozed the PR man.
- "Excuse me if I choke on Cameron’s hypocrisy.
- "While Mandela languished behind bars, the Tory leader enjoyed an all-expenses-paid junket to a white supremacist South Africa.
- "In 1989, Cameron marked Mandela’s 26th year in prison sipping chilled wine with the apartheid state’s rulers.
- "He wasn’t a Young Tory wearing a 'Hang Nelson Mandela' T-shirt but his visit comforted the great man’s oppressors.
- "Nelson does have grace and an inspirational absence of bitterness – but there isn’t enough metal polish for Cameron’s brass neck."
PM touting for postal votes
In February 2014, David Cameron wrote from Conservative Campaign Headquarters to each voter on the UK electoral register soliciting them to apply for a postal vote, and return their signed applications "Freepost" to: The Conservative Party, 1-7 Langleys Road, Birmingham, B29 6HR.
This is the text of the PM's letter:
- Dear Voter,
- Apply for a postal vote today and help us secure an EU Referendum
- This year's European Parliamentary election is the most important in a generation.
- For the first time since the Eurozone crisis, you get to have your say on Britain's relationship with the EU.
- That's why I am asking you to consider applying to vote by post - so you have the peace of mind that you'll still have your say even if you are away, ill or busy on election day.
- And if you prefer to vote in person, you can still take your postal vote to your local polling station and place it in the ballot box. Signing up for a postal vote puts you in control and ensures your voice will be heard whatever happens.
- Europe needs to change
- Since becoming Prime Minister I've already taken tough action to stand up for Britain in Europe by:
- Cutting the EU budget to protect British taxpayers;
- Vetoing a new EU treaty that would have given more powers to Brussels; and,
- Refusing to spend British taxes on bailing out the euro.
- My position on Europe is this:
- 1. The EU needs fundamental change so it works for Britain.
- 2. I will do my best to negotiate a better deal for the British taxpayer and our country.
- 3. When those negotiations are complete, the British people will have their say in an in-out referendum on whether Britain should remain in the EU under the new negotiated agreement. Both Labour and the Liberal Democrats oppose this plan and want to deny you a say, while UKIP simply can't deliver.
- If I am Prime Minister after the next general election, there will be an in-out referendum by the end of 2017. This is my personal pledge to you.
- Only the Conservatives can deliver real change in Europe - and the European election this year is a hugely important step to securing it.
- How to help us secure that referendum
- This election is a chance to send a message to Brussels that the EU must work for Britain if we are to remain a member.
- So apply for a postal vote today and help us secure an in-out referendum by voting Conservative in this year's crucial European election.
- Yours sincerely,
- David Cameron
- Prime Minister
- (Promoted by Alan Mabbutt on behalf of the Conservative Party both of 4 Matthew Parker Street, London SW1H 9HQ - www.conservatives.com)
A Document by David Cameron
|Title||Document type||Publication date||Subject(s)|
|File:2010 07 06 PUB David Cameron letter to Peter Gibbs re Torture Inquiry .pdf||letter||6 July 2010||Binyam Mohamed|
An appointment by David Cameron
|Malcolm Rifkind||Chair of the Intelligence and Security Committee||6 July 2010||24 February 2015||Resigned following the "cash for access" scandal.|
|Document:David Cameron in the Knesset. March 2014||article||26 March 2014||Francis Carr Begbie||A brief run down on the espionage involvement of Israeli firms active in the UK and US on the occasion of the visit of UK PM David Cameron to Israel on 12 March 2014|
|Document:David Cameron's Jewish roots||article||7 January 2014||Martin Iqbal||David Cameron's 'aristocratic' Jewish ancestry, and the gross over-representation of Jewish influence and finance in British politics. Brings clarity to the question of why the UK Establishment is so excruciatingly biased and subservient to the interests of the Zionist State of Israel.|
|Document:Exclusive: I Can Reveal the Legal Advice on Drone Strikes, and How the Establishment Works||article||9 September 2015||Craig Murray||Craig Murray reveals how Sir Daniel Bethlehem continues to bring a Zionist perspective to any legal advice emanating from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office|
|Document:Libya: Fine, but why Britain||article||20 March 2011||Brian Barder||David Cameron seemingly Gung Ho on toppling the Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi, while Barack Obama takes a back seat|
|Document:Pan Am Flight 103: It was the Uranium||article||6 January 2014||Patrick Haseldine||Following Bernt Carlsson's untimely death in the Lockerbie bombing, the UN Council for Namibia inexplicably dropped the case against Britain's URENCO for illegally importing yellowcake from the Rössing Uranium Mine in Namibia.|
|Document:Sharon took Brave Decisions for Peace says Agent Cameron||article||13 January 2014||Stuart Littlewood||The passing of Ariel Sharon. With comment on the fawning eulogies of Western Establishment Figures (Especially UK PM David Cameron) to a man who, on any rational assessment of the evidence, was guilty of multiple war crimes.|
|Document:State Failure - the Conservative Government, Westminster and Britain||Article||14 September 2016||John S Warren||Foreign Affairs Committee report says ex-PM David Cameron was responsible for appalling policy blunders in Libya that helped create a failed state on the verge of civil war. His (synchronised) resignation is all about appearances.|
|Document:UK PM Covers Up Crimes Against Humanity – Lectures Sri Lanka on Crimes Against Humanity||article||19 November 2013||Felicity Arbuthnot||A juxtaposition of the sanctimonious posturing of UK PM David Cameron at the opening of the Commonwealth heads of government conference over Sri Lanka's human rights record, with his own machinations to prevent the Chilcot Inquiry publishing papers fundamental to the understanding of how Blair and Bush engineered the Iraq war.|
|Document:Why Isn’t Everyone In Favour of Taxing Financial Speculation?||report||19 April 2016||Robert Reich||Bernie Sanders wants to tax stock trades at a rate of 0.5 percent (a trade of $1,000 would cost $5), and bond trades at 0.1 percent. The tax would reduce incentives for high-speed trading, insider deal-making, and short-term financial betting. Sanders’ 0.5 percent tax could thereby finance public investments that enlarge the economic pie rather than merely rearrange its slices – like tuition-free public education.|
|File:2010 07 09 Reprieve letter to Prime Minister Cameron re Torture Inquiry.pdf||letter||9 July 2010|
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- "South Africa: Missile". Nuclear Threat Initiative. November 2011.
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