Jacob Rees-Mogg slams MI5 and MI6 'distracted' by woke agenda as Putin invades Ukraine


The Cabinet minister said an obsession with the woke agenda presented the wrong image to the Russian hardman. Mr Rees-Mogg slammed the spy agencies’ for being “distracted” by the inclusivity drive, saying it gave the impression they have no “backbone”.

He criticised MI5 and MI6 for telling employees to avoid words such as “grip” and “manpower” as well as telling them to consider their “white privilege”.

The minister’s rebuke of the security agencies comes after an internal memo leaked last month outlining a guide to improve diversity and inclusion.

Entitled “Mission Critical”, the document was published internally on December 6, just says after intelligence emerged that Russia was preparing to invade Ukraine.

While the West was desperately attempting to stop Moscow from launching an assault on its democratic neighbour, staff at MI5 and MI6 were being told to consider the language they use.


A section on inclusive language stated: “In national security, look out for words and phrases, such as ‘strong’ or ‘grip’, that reinforce the dominant cultural patterns.

“Avoid jargon, hierarchy or gender biases.”

Mr Rees-Mogg told the grassroots Conservative website Conservative Home yesterday: “What are they doing? That’s not their job to faff around with this kind of stuff, they’re there to keep the country safe.

“And this distraction, this time used on essentially trivial stuff, has not been an indication of backbone.

“If you were Putin and you thought what sort of response would I get from the UK, and saw they were worrying about whether you use the word grip, you’d think they didn’t have a grip.”

When the document was first leaked last month, a Whitehall spokesman said the inclusivity report would help improve the work being carried out by the security services.

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“They are fundamental to the national security of the UK,” the spokesman said.

“That includes having people from different backgrounds, perspectives and ways of thinking.”

While Mr Rees-Mogg criticised the obsession with the woke agenda, he said Britain was ready to stand up to Putin and help Ukraine defeat its occupiers.

Moscow’s efforts to take over the country are thought to have stalled in recent days, with UK military intelligence saying “Russian forces are failing to make any significant breakthroughs”.

Officials added: “Ukrainian air defences appear to have enjoyed considerable success against Russia’s modern combat aircraft, probably preventing them from achieving any degree of control of the air.”

Britain has taken a leading role on the world stage in helping Ukraine defend itself against the Kremlin.

For years before the invasion, British troops helped to train the Ukrainian armed forces to make sure they were combat-ready.

The UK also continues to supply the country with lethal and defensive weapons to arm those taking on Russia.


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