British MP Hits Back: “I’m a Friend of Bermuda”

March 25, 2011

rosindellAndrew Rosindell, the British MP who came under fire from Minister of National Security Lt. Col. David Burch, has hit back at the comments saying he is a “friend of Bermuda,” and the “Minister’s aggressive outburst was unfortunate.”

This past Monday [Mar.23] Minister of National Security Lt. Col. David Burch had strong words for Andrew Rosindell,  saying he was “disrespectful”, “out of order” and that his behaviour was “a breach of every solitary protocol that exists across the planet.”

The Colonel’s statement was greeted with great interest by locals, with almost 200 comments left on the article and on the Facebook link – some agreeing with the Colonel, while others disagreed with the remarks.

The Conservative politician is the Member of Parliament for the Romford constituency in Greater London. No stranger to controversy himself, Mr Rosindell drew considerable media attention in the UK after sponsoring an ‘Erotica Event’ at the UK’s House of Commons.

The DailyMail reported that, “A Tory MP came under fire last night for letting a businessman who has donated money to him hold an £89-a-head ‘Erotica House of Commons Dinner’ followed by a sex party where guests must wear kinky fancy dress.” He also hit the headlines in in the run-up to the 2001 General Election when he campaigned with his dog, who wore a Union Flag waistcoat.

The British MP was said by Colonel Burch to have visited Bermuda for a UBP event, to which Mr Rosindell said that although he did attend a UBP event while he was here, he did not come specifically for the event. Mr Rosindell said he traveled to the USA, and had arranged to stop in Bermuda on the way back. He said as the UBP is a Conservative party, “it is their sister party.”

Upon checking with the UBP about Mr Rosindell’s visit, a spokesperson said, “Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell is a friend of Bermuda who we see annually at the Conservative Party conference (ie.2009 and 2010). We are most pleased that Mr. Rosindell MP was able to address a gathering of United Bermuda Party Parliamentarians, Executive and Friends on Saturday, February 19th at a reception/dinner at the Mid Ocean Club. In addition, he also had a round table discussion with our Shadow Ministers the following day (Sunday). ”

Mr Rosindell told us he learned of the comments by Minister Burch with “great sadness.” He said “Mr Burch should get his facts straight before he makes aggressive remarks.” He said he did not meet with Colonel Burch, nor did he hear from him while he was in Bermuda. He also said he meet with many PLP members while he was here, and said he got along very well with them. He continued on to say that he is a friend of Bermuda, and a friend of the Overseas Territories.

Mr Rosindell responded to Colonel Burch’s statement that, “I would suspect, that on the return to the United Kingdom he’s probably had what I would call a ‘come to Jesus talk’ with those who sit on the Front Bench in the British Government, starting with the Foreign Secretary… how do you go out to the colonies and talk about you’re going to enunciate policy. What’s up with that?”

In response, Mr Rosindell said “How dated is this man?”, and said Bermuda is not a colony, it is an overseas territory, which he called “cherished” and a “model territory.” He also said the Bermudians have not expressed interest in independence.

During his visit, the Royal Gazette reported that Mr Rosindell “expressed concern during his visit that the Union Flag, also known as the Union Jack, was removed from the Front Street flagpole in October 2009 and replaced with the Bermuda flag,” and said he thinks both flags should fly.

Colonel Burch responded to his remarks in the Senate saying, ““And then you want to suggest that you want to see the British and Bermuda flags together, because the Union Jack or Union Flag is the flag that unifies all British people across the world. We should never be afraid to fly it. Well stay home and fly it.”

We asked Mr Rosindell specifically about the flag issue, and he asked why the Colonel “is not proud of the flag?” He said the comments sounded close to “denigrating” the flag, continuing on to say that the Colonel “is a British subject like I am, so why wouldn’t he want to see it fly?”

Mr Rosindell also said he greatly enjoyed his trip to Bermuda, and plans to become a regular visitor.

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Comments (29)

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  1. LOL (original) says:

    AS stated just comic releif plain and simple…………

    LOL

    • Cleancut says:

      Burch is just playing games with the Bermuda Public. It’s his Campaign to get in the Media as much as he can day after day, year after year. He knows the the only way he can get a vote and get in the house is to get in the PANTS of the Bermudian public.

  2. Concerned says:

    I agree we should fly both flags…what’s the big deal?!!

    • Todd says:

      Does the Bermuda Flag not have the ‘Union Jack’ in the corner?? You can argue either way… if you have a problem flying the Union Jack, technically it is flying anyway right? Or, if you believe both should be flown, if its up there anyway, whats the problem having the full size one…

  3. Dragging A Lure says:

    I can visualize several members and supporters of the current UBP really sucking up to the Ultra-Conversative British MP. Check his political background in another news media. He does not have a clue regarding the views a certain segment of our population hold and it has nothing to do with independence from Britain. Mr.Rosendill lives in La La Land.

    Drag

    • itwasn'tme says:

      so this guy is the chairman of the UK parlimentarian watchdog group responsible for overseas territories. I think Burch had better get used to seeing this guy snooping around and highlighting bad behavior. Burch served Queen and country for many years, must have soluted the British Standard over a thousand times during his career while graciously accepting his monthly stipend. No doubt he’s collecting his army pension and benefits as well. So what’s your problem with Britishers Burch?????

      • Cleancut says:

        Maybe the Queen will ask Burch to return his Medals that he refuses to wear in public.

    • Truth says:

      Its an interesting phenomenon. If we encountered an idiot from Bermuda, we would treat him as such. If we encountered an idiot from the UK, somehow, he still knows more than us and we would do well to listen, instead of calling a spade a spade.

      • mixitup says:

        Exactly!

        • itwasn'tme says:

          Question, which idiot looks more of an idiot. The polite speaking idiot or the ‘u can kiss my dark azz’ idiot

  4. PAS says:

    BRITISH MP…sdo…INDEPENDENCE…UNION JACK…DISRESPECTFUL…sdo…STAY HOME…

  5. mixedup says:

    Burch has shown many times in the past how arrogant and unprofessional he can be so i’m not at all surprised by his statements. He is hanging on to the coat tails of the PLP who in their own time have proven their arrogant and unprofessional ways as well. As long as this party is in control they will continue to embarrass our country and manipulate our people over and over again. Fly the Union Jack and be grateful for what we have. there is no reason not to.

  6. Terry says:

    Hanging on to the “coat tails”….bwhaaaaaa
    He has the support of the House.
    He is the whipping boy in the Senate.

    Lets see where they all end up in the bread line.

    Tink about it.

  7. Jim Garlic says:

    Ink nobody goan come darn heah an tell we lot what cloth to fly…bye badda go long bout his business…

  8. Wake Up and Smell the Tea says:

    Hello people – WE ARE A BRITISH OVERSEAS TERRITORY! What part of that do our “elected” (yea, right!) officials not understand?

    FLY THE FLAG – show respect!!

  9. Hmmmmm says:

    I’m trying to understand how this British MP can be a universally acclaimed idiot in his own country but is apparently the voice of God in mine? We’re sicker than I thought.

    • Rich says:

      Only in a country like Bermuda do we defend idiotic foreigners that patronize our own leaders.

  10. Fed Up Bermudian says:

    OK- nobody asked but here you go- what happens when one of the proponents of independence is offered an MBE or other such award? As far as I know, we have some Dames in our midst who saw fit to accept the Queen’s accolades, but we shouldn’t fly her flag? Seems a tad self-serving and duplicitous. Think about it. We can’t spout on like this when it suits us, but use the British status for our own aggrandisement…so you can’t have it both ways. Not being British anymore means you can’t be a Dame or a Sir anymore either. This guy might well be a pompous ass, but lowering ourselves to that level makes us barely better. THAT’s what’s sick.

    • Hmmmmm says:

      In order to have our own awards to recognize service we need to be independent. Since we can’t seem to get around to it, I prefer that those who deserve it get something while they’re still living. If we wait for this nation of vacillators to make up their minds it’ll never happen. Thankfully we did Dame Marjorie, Dame Lois, Dr. Ball and others like June Masters-Augustus before they died.

      • Rich says:

        Maybe at the very least this debate will be a good thing. Maybe we can follow our Canadian brothers who got rid of the red ensign in 1965 in favour of an endemic symbol of their people. Also got rid of British honours for Canadian Citizens. Now everyone there happily aspires to become a Companion of the Order of Canada.

    • Rich says:

      As a point of correction, the Union Jack is not Her flag. The Royal Standard is.

      The Union Jack instead is representative of the legislative union between the different nations of the British Isles achieved over centuries of conquest and negotiation. As a symbol for the peoples of the UK, it’s lovely.

      Unless you’re an Irish Catholic. In which case, it’s a reminder of centuries of violent suppression and arbitrary detention. But except for that, it’s lovely.

      Or if you’re French Canadian. It bitterly recalls such delights as ethnic cleansing in the form of forcibly removing your brothers from l’Acadie.

      Or a Kikuyu in Kenya, whose ancestors were so ruthlessly gunned-down in the Mau Mau uprising.

      Or from the Qing Dynasty. Hell hath no fury like British tradesmen content on selling death and addiction to racially inferior Chinamen.

      Or Indian patriots whose ancestors valiantly sought to take their destiny into their own hands in 1857.

      Or a Palestinian, still reeling from the Balfour declaration and a plethora of broken promises about Arab self-rule.

      None of this is to say that the Brits are all uncompromisingly bad. But it is to demonstrate that not all symbols are as morally neutral as some may have you believe.

      Mr Rossindell himself also wants St George’s cross to fly in England side-by-side with the Union Jack. A position shared by the far-right and racist ‘English Defence League’. Gotta love that kind of company.

      • itwasn'tme says:

        Great History lesson. All the more reason why a proponent of independance would accept OBE MBE Dame or Lord title….one word sums it up

        HYPOCRITE

        • Rich says:

          I agree with you. Although I’m not sure how germane to the discussion your interjection is.

        • Rich says:

          Although, I would argue that it is not all inconsistent for someone like Dame Lois to have been honoured with her DBE despite her position on independence. Her recognition was for her many years of service to Bermuda and her people, during which time Bermuda was an overseas territory.

          Furthermore, being pro-independence doesn’t mean being anti-British. One of the reasons why Bermudians have never been as hostile to the Brits as others throughout the Empire and Commonwealth is because of the UK Govt’s active policy of benign indifference; something which would be thoroughly undermined with two-bit MPs piping up all the time whenever they are clearly not welcome to do so.

          Finally, I’m beginning to feel that a lot of the hostility on these forums is far less to do with any principled stance on the actual comments made, whether pro- or against, and are merely being used to take shots at political opponents like Col Burch.

          And just to preempt any retorts, I am not pro-independence nor did I vote PLP in the last election. Frankly, this issue has nothing to do with domestic political labels. I take issue when the leaders of my country are dressed down by an overseas idiot regardless of their political affiliation.

      • Apolcalypto says:

        Ermmmm HELLLLLOOOOO . If it wasn’t the Brits it would have been the French, Spanish or the Dutch. What’s your point !!!!!!

  11. Makes sense! says:

    Don efin worry wifit

  12. codfish says:

    With all this antibritish sentiment from the plp shows a lack uneducated and pompous fools.They want to enjoy all the perks from the British govt and then BITE the hand with total disrespect to them..Burch you should be on the stop list in England bringin secretly four Gitmo refugees into Bermuda.

  13. Apolcalypto says:

    Awwwwww did dums poor wittle senator Burch got his feelings hurt. HA !!!!!!!
    He met his match with this one. Here you have an MP who’s view is way out of line with most British people hurting the feelings of a senator who’s views are way out of line with Bermudian people. LOL