Theresa May’s gamble, or how to throw away a landslide

The other night, watching the British election party leaders' debate, I found myself warming to Jeremy Corbyn. Jeremy Corbyn! I thought Are you mad? You see, I'm not a natural Corbyn supporter -- I'm not even a Labour Party supporter. But it's been that kind of election, where after an hour or so of the usual tired slogans you find yourself warming to a man who turns up on television with a pot of home-made jam and says if he becomes Prime Minister he'll use his downtime to tend to his … [Read more...]

Tony Blair Cannot Carry the Blame for Iraq Alone

When I arrived in Baghdad in the hot and frightening summer of 2003, there were still plenty of people prepared to argue that Tony Blair and George Bush had done the right thing by invading Iraq. I remember a distinguished British journalist telling me by the pool at the al-Hamra hotel that things were getting better, as the sound of gunfire echoed in the distance and tracer fire lit up the sky. That morning I had seen an entire bus full of passengers being robbed by highwaymen at gunpoint on … [Read more...]

This is London Calling: Keep the Lights on in Europe

In 1914, on the eve of the First World War, the British foreign secretary Sir Edward Grey looked out of his window at the street lamps being lit, and said "The lamps are going out all over Europe, we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime". Now, on the eve of the Brexit referendum, I fear the lights may be about to start going out again in Europe -- and this time the first place to fall dark will be Britain. The European Union was built on a dream. Not a dream of common markets or … [Read more...]

Who Killed Jo Cox?

Who killed Jo Cox? Not Nigel Farage. Though he showed us the broken and helpless and told us to fear them. They fled crucifixion and poison gas and he told us to hate them. "If voting doesn't work, violence is next," he said.  But that's just Nigel, that's his way. Did you see him on the Thames?  You've got to put Britain first, you see. Not David Cameron. Though he told us a "swarm" was coming across the sea to take advantage of us. David Cameron is an honourable man. he was just trying … [Read more...]

A Tale of two MPs; or why Nadine Dorries is a Buffoon

So, Nadine Dorries has abandoned her responsibilities as an MP and gone off to take part in I'm a Celebrity, get me a Brain Transplant. She's got a lousy sense of timing. Just as the entire world is transfixed by politics, with Barack Obama's re-election in the US, Ms Dorries has flounced off muttering that politics is boring and what people are really interested in is has-been celebrities being ritually humiliated by having maggots poured over their heads. At a time when Britain is facing a … [Read more...]

Jimmy Savile and the Death of Innocence UPDATED

Update -- 9 November 2012 Since this was originally posted Lord McAlpine has issued a strongly worded statement that reports linking him to the North Wales child abuse allegations are "wholly false and seriously defamatory", and independent reports have emerged that he is a victim of mistaken identity. This blog never named Lord McAlpine, but referred only  to reports about an unnamed "senior Conservative politician". However, I have decided to delete all references to the case to avoid any … [Read more...]