Re: Tom Welsh ...and it's much the same here.
'"I have lived under three dictatorships, and the difference between them and our "democracies" is a matter of degree...." Yeah, that's like saying the difference between being alive and healthy and being dead is a matter of degree - it's a very big matter of degree.'
You clearly don't understand the meaning of "a matter of degree". The difference between being alive and being dead is exactly the opposite: it is a dichotomy. Either one or the other.
As for obeying the law, the point is that you (as a mere citizen) don't have any control over what laws are passed - any more than you would have in a dictatorship. You will no doubt point to your one vote in general elections; but that no more gives you real political influence than a single lottery ticket makes you a millionaire. In Nazi Germany and the USSR, people were oppressed and killed in accordance with the laws. The Nazis were elected to power through democratic elections - indeed, Hitler's democratic mandate was far greater than Blair's or Cameron's. What we have in the UK is an effective dictatorship in which the dictator is changed (perhaps) every few years, more or less at random, but always chosen from the golden circle of the elect.
With regard to Russia, you complain that I specified "since the fall of the USSR". Well, of course I did: Russia as a separate nation did not exist before that. Stalin, for example, the worst Soviet dictator, was Georgian. So it would be most unreasonable to tar Russia with Soviet crimes. As for "oppressing their own", you are trying to change the subject. I was talking about illegal wars of aggression, not domestic repression.
'So, you want to compare the UN-mandated actions in Iraq with the unilateral Russian actions in Chechnya? How about the Russian invasion of Georgia, or their current meddling in the Ukraine?'
Sorry, that's utter rubbish. "On March 20, 2003, a United States-organized coalition invaded Iraq, under the pretext that Iraq had failed to abandon its weapons of mass destruction program in violation of U.N. Resolution 687. This claim was based on documents provided by the CIA and British government and were later found to be unreliable". (Wikipedia) An accurate synopsis, except that for "unreliable" one should read "a pack of barefaced, deliberate lies". The Russian action in Georgia, blatantly provoked by Washington, backfired spectacularly. "On August 7, 2008, Georgian forces began shelling the South Ossetian capital, Tskhinvali; this was followed, on August 8, 2008, by an advance of Georgian Army infantry, tanks, and police commandos into South Ossetia; the action was supported by artillery and air support, leading to the capture of a number of key South Ossetian towns and retreat of Russian peacekeepers and South Ossetian forces. However, after a Russian peacekeepers' base was shelled and personnel killed, units of the Russian 58th Army, supported by irregular forces, entered South Ossetia..." (Wikipedia). Note that the Georgians started the fighting and killed Russian peacekeepers. What would the USA have done under similar circumstances? I shudder to think. In the event, the Russians drove in rapidly, routed the Georgians, and quickly brought the "war" to a successful conclusion. As for the Ukraine, the only nation meddling there is the USA, which is known to have spent $5 billion to overthrow the elected government and replace it with a bunch of fascist murderers. The fascists have been resisted by Russians living in Ukraine, with neither material help nor encouragement from Russia - which, indeed, has moved its forces far back from the border to prevent any US-organized provocations.
To deal briefly with your other points, you place far too much emphasis on the creation of "democratic" government in Afghanistan. The Americans have caused just as much death and destruction there as the Soviets did, and have accomplished nothing else. The "democratic" government they imposed (candidates and voters chosen by the Americans, naturally) will not outlast their departure.
Contrary to your assertion, I understand the British constitution quite well. However, I describe it as it actually works, not as it is theoretically described in books and political speeches. Personally, I would prefer political parties to be illegal, forcing MPs to think through each issue on its merits. But that will never happen. As things stand, MPs could perfectly well be replaced by coloured tokens, with each party leader being given a number equal to the number of seats won at the general election. MPs virtually never vote against the whip, especially on matters of importance. (Otherwise we would never have gone to war in Iraq, as most of the people and most MPs knew perfectly well that the excuses were trumped-up lies).