Thursday, May 10, 2007

Goodbye Tony Blair

It’s official, Britain’s Tony Blair will resign effective June 27th, after ten years as England’s Prime Minister, the longest serving PM this century after Margaret Thatcher.

Blair’s been an English version of Bill Clinton, bringing the Labour Party out of eighteen years of political isolation and back to a Centrist Party devoid of all references to the failed policies of socialism.

Despite a long string of accomplishments including helping to bring peace to Northern Ireland and transforming Britain’s Labour Party from an extreme Left-wing rabble, with little political currency into a Centrist pro-market Party with considerable political clout today, his tenure will be dominated by sentiments over Iraq.

Following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the United States, it was right, Blair said, to "stand shoulder to shoulder with our oldest ally, and I did so out of belief."

Even thought the charges that “the invasion of Iraq was based on lies” has been thoroughly debunked by documentation that not only did virtually EVERY Intelligence Agency in the world believe Saddam’s Iraq had WMDs, so did the UN and Saddam’s own Generals, as Hussein encouraged and used that belief as a strategy of “deterrence by doubt,” the mismanagement of the post-war occupation of Iraq has eroded support for the effort.

"Hand on heart, I did what I thought was right," Blair told party workers and supporters at Trimdon Labour Club in his Sedgefield constituency in northern England. "I may have been wrong, but that's your call. But believe one thing if nothing else. I did what I thought was right for our country."

Blair had the courage to do what he believed was right without regard to political consequences and as a result Conservative leader David Cameron, who at age 40, has revitalized the party of Margaret Thatcher, since he became leader in 2005, could win a majority in parliament in the coming national elections.

Blair’s dour successor, Gordon Brown, will have to overcome not only his personal lack of charisma but the “Honors scandals” that have rocked the Labour Party.

The past few months have seen a police investigation into claims that the Labour party traded political honors for cash. Senior Blair aide Ruth Turner, Blair's chief fundraiser Lord Levy and two others have been arrested during the police inquiries into claims that seats in the House of Lords and other honors were awarded in exchange for party donations. Prosecutors are considering whether anyone should be charged.

Blair was questioned twice by police as a witness, but is not considered a suspect, but the scandal may well make it difficult for Labour to win in the upcoming elections.


Rachel said...

I hate to think that Iraq was the reason for Blair to step down. He is a good man and in terms of political consquences for England, the Iraq war has far less compared to the US. I hope it also had to do with other problems. Otherwise, England will regret kicking him out.

JMK said...

I believe it had to do with a number of other factors Rachel.

He's said 10 years is enough and I'd accept him at his word on that, not to mention the "Honors for cash" scandal that's brewing - Blair's not suspected of any wrong-doing, but people close to him have been linked to the scandal.

The sad thing is that many Liberals here will no doubt favor a more anti-American candidate for England.

I have to be careful to make clear that that's "Liberals" and "radicals," NOT generic Democrats.

I remain a registered Democrat.

I'd consider myself a "Zell Miller Democrat,"....maybe even a "Harold Ford Jr. Democrat.

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