Friday, December 21, 2007

Trouble in the Family?

Trouble in the Family?

Some feel the New Prime Minister of the UK does not share Tony Blair’s love for the US. There maybe trouble brewing.

In the December issue of the American Legion Magazine, there is an article by Alan W. Dowd. Mr. Dowd is a senior fellow with Sagamore Institute for Policy research and a contributing editor to The American Legion Magazine.

The title of Mr. Dowd’s article is: “Britain after Blair”. You’ll find the entire article inline at:

We recommend this piece very highly. It may well assist you to understand some of the wrangling which may be in the offing between the Mother Country and the Colonies.

Blair is gone. Gordon Brown is the new Prime Minister. The long and the short of it is… they are VERY different.

Some of those differences:

Brown has jettisoned the Bush-Blair terminology and calls terrorism “a crime,” pointedly not using the phrase “war on terror.”

Brown has labeled Afghanistan “the front line against terrorism,” highlighting a distinct difference with Bush, who calls Iraq “the central front in the war on terror.”

Brown stoically talks about “duties to discharge and responsibilities to keep” in Iraq. Gone is Blair’s rhetoric about con-fronting tyrannies and terrorists.

Yet some of Brown’s critics are not so diplomatic about the new prime minister – or sanguine about his grasp of the “struggle” he inherited. They note that during Brown’s tenure as chancellor, defense spending as a percentage of GDP fell to its lowest level since 1930. Liam Fox, the shadow defense secretary, blames a rash of friendly-fire deaths in Af-ghanistan on cuts in defense spending. “As chancellor, Gordon Brown never gave defense much priority,” Fox argues, adding that the British military is now reaping the consequences. (From: “Britain after Blair by Alan W. Dowd.)

Brown has already ordered the UK Forces in Iraq to withdraw from bases in Basra. Many now think this signals a complete pullout of British troops from Iraq. Some country’s soldier must replace the Brits in, and around, Basra. Most likely it will require the US to re-deploy some 3500 Marines or soldiers to take the place of the UK’s troops in that very troubled part of Iraq.

There is definitely a new day dawning in the US/UK relationship. The US can no longer expect unconditional support from the Mother country. At least… not under Brown. Nobody expects Brown to “stick his neck out” for the US. Tony Blair did… but not Brown. Gone are the days of Winston Churchill, and Margaret Thatcher. Long gone! Now we have: Mr. Brown.


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Wha Wadna Fecht for Charlie said...

Could you have found a more appealing photograph of our glorious leader – he resembles a monkey.

Mr Brown - A humourless, dour, anally retentive control freak. The mastermind behind stealth taxation where income tax stays steady but every other tax (i.e. VAT, road tax, council tax, green tax, fuel duty, alcohol duty, inheritance tax, capital gains tax, parking fines, speeding fines, the future bin collection charge, fines for not recycling etc.) slips slowly upward. And not one person voted for him – roll on the next election!

“Gordon Brown never gave defense much priority,” Fox argues, adding that the British military is now reaping the consequences.” In the Sand Box I bought my own GPS receiver, my boots came from Blackwater (as my standard issue pair melted) and we had to share body armour. In ‘stan I ‘borrowed’ some body armour from your Army (I am eternally grateful and one day may return it).

You will not hear words like ‘war on terror’ being spoke anywhere in Europe.

Longstreet said...

Ouch! Melting boots can be very uncomfortable! Glad Blackwater could help! Ditto the body armor (courtesy of the US Army?)

You would have thought that Europe would have learned from the 1st and 2nd world wars that ignoring an enemy will not result in that enemy going away.

If the Dems in this country have their way, the US military will suffer the same fate as your troops.

Question: How long will Brown serve in that position? I'm not nearly familiar enough with the way your poltical system works.

Wha Wadna Fecht for Charlie said...

Parliaments usually sit for four years, with an election being called at the start of the fifth year. If the current Parliament follows this pattern, the next general election will occur in 2009.As the local and European elections are on 11 June 2009 the general election will probably take place on the same day. The latest it could be left until is 3 June 2010 - or they could dissolve parliament tomorrow and call an election. (the joy of no written constitution!)