Lib Dems the only party to oppose war with Iran

Lib Dems only one of the main parties to oppose military action in their manifesto.

Sign Up

Get the New Statesman's Morning Call email.

A point worth noting from the Lib Dem manifesto is that they're the only one of the three main parties to explicitly oppose military action against Iran.

The manifesto says: "[W]e oppose military action against Iran and believe those calling for such action undermine the growing reform movement in Iran."

By contrast, the other two parties leave all options on the table.

The Tories say "we support concerted international efforts to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon".

And Labour says: [T]his is the gravest nuclear threat to global security since the foundation of the Non-Proliferation Treaty in the 1960s. We support engagement and pressure on the Iranian regime; it is threatening its own people as well as the security of the region and the world."

Foreign policy is barely getting a look-in at this election, but we can expect Iran to be an important consideration for the next government. In the case of the Tories, the issue threatens to expose the growing disparity between the party's neoconservative and realist wings.

Meanwhile, the Lib Dems, vindicated over Iraq, clearly feel that an anti-war position is the smart one to take. This is one to watch.

Join us for the first TV leaders' debate this Thursday.

George Eaton is assistant editor of the New Statesman.