>> 20 May 2004

The Friday Essay


Ever since 9/11, the United States has been able to rely on the constant support of the United Kingdom in the war against the Jihadists. British Prime Minister Tony Blair has stood side by side with President Bush in the heat of this battle. However could this all be about to suddenly change? Will the UK be uncoupled from the USA and could this represent the death knell for the Coalition against terrorism? To lose Spain was unfortunate but to lose Britain would be a calamity!

During recent weeks, the liberal media in the UK, led by the British Broadcasting Corporation, has been waging a relentless and fervent campaign to get Tony Blair to resign. His alleged crime? That he supports the United States war aims! For the first time Blair seems truly vulnerable and talk of who will succeed him dominates the air-waves. The strain is showing on Blair and his political survival is no longer taken as a certainty.

It is important to recall that ever since 9/11, the received wisdom in UK media circles (both right and left wing) is that President Bush is a simple-minded cowboy who has been led by big business into recklessly indulging in illegal war-mongering. Amongst the simpering intelligentsia that infests the media there is a unity of belief that “sophisticated dialogue” is the only way to resolve problems.

When Blair cut a deal with the Irish terrorist group, the IRA, that propelled their political propagandists into the Government of Northern Ireland, he was hailed as a Statesman. When he now refuses to accommodate militant Islamic terrorists he is damned for being a “Bush’s poodle”. Remember that appeasement has a long and dishonourable record in the UK media - extending back as far as cheer-leading for the infamous Neville Chamberlain’s “Peace in our time” arrangement with Hitler. Some things never change.

So the expectation that the UK media would support the prosecution of the war against terrorism was always improbable. Thus it has proven. Blair’s own political organisation, the Labour Party, is left-of-centre and has always been deeply unhappy that Blair did not join up with Chirac and Schroeder in a trinity of European treachery. Several prominent Labour Party members, such as Clare Short are foaming-at-the-mouth anti-Americans, and specifically –anti-Republican. Whilst Clinton and his sleazy friends held the White House they were able to conceal their contempt for the US, but with his exit, off came the gloves.

In recent days, Blair’s former Foreign Secretary and UN apologist Robin Cook has urged his former boss to pull UK troops out of Iraq straightaway. Twisting the knife in he says, “Mr Blair’s proximity to the US President, in the wake of torture allegations against US troops, is endangering British soldiers.” The sheer stupidity of Cook’s comments is left unchallenged in the UK. No one, for example, has pointed out that it is the weak-kneed equivocation of politicians like Cook that has emboldened the terrorists and motivated them to kill our troops. The blood is on their hands.

There is also growing rebellion amongst Blair’s parliamentary colleagues who seek to restrain him sending further military reinforcements to Iraq. With a UK election fast approaching, many of those politicians with marginal seats seem to believe that their chances of re-election will be enhanced if Blair goes. Their pragmatic desire to get re-elected at any cost is symptomatic of the moral malaise in the UK.

The fevered speculation amongst the chattering class is that Tony Blair will be gone by the end of the year and replaced by his Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown. Brown is a dyed-in-the red-wool socialist who commands the support of the extreme left, the Trade Unions, and the media elite. Whilst he is known to be generally pro-American, it is considered that he will have to move to distance the UK from the US. Make no mistake the link will be broken.

A recent poll has shown that as a consequence of sustained media hysteria, almost half the electorate now want Blair to quit. 46% of voters surveyed indicated that Blair cannot be trusted and only two in five voters now support UK presence in Iraq. A daily diet of unremitting bad news stories (we have no Fox News in the UK!) is shifting the population to a set of political views inimical to those held by Blair.

Let us be clear; in many ways, Tony Blair deserves to go. His wanton destruction of the UK constitution since he came to power in 1997 has been unpardonable. His determination to transplant the United Kingdom into the European Union and thus submerge our ancient freedoms in a European constitutional quagmire alarms every conservative-minded voter. His failure to stop the growing public sector and his bungling of the economy is further reason for his departure!

But on the single greatest issue of our times, the war against terrorism, he has shown quiet resolve and genuine leadership. He has faced down a siren chorus within his own Party. He has held firm as the British press screams for his scalp. This is therefore not the time for Blair to go anywhere.

If the ever sceptic UK media prevails Britain will dump Blair, withdraw its troops from Iraq, distance itself from the United States, and embrace the axis of weasel. Bin Laden will have won a tremendous victory. Tyranny will have been seen to triumph over liberty and all because the modern media is no longer capable of distinguishing between right and wrong. The great British philosopher Sir Isaiah Berlin declared that “Scepticism, driven to extremes, defeats itself by becoming self-refuting” Let us pray he is right.


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