THE SPINE OCTOBER 9, 2006
This morning, from a friend very canny on British politics:
As you know, the British Labour Party will be needing a new leader sometime soon, and many point to Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown, who has spent every waking minute of the Blair administration not-so-privately whining about how he should have been Prime Minister much earlier, how Blair has stayed on too long, etc., etc. ... Indeed, the split that he has engendered within the party was responsible for forcing Blair to cede his hand in late August and come out and announce he would step down within the year, and has caused a great many voters to grow tired of Labour bickering and infighting.
I'm sure you agree with me that having a Blairite Labour Party is important for American foreign policy interests. And for British interests, as well. Actually, for British interests in the first place. But Gordon Brown is not the man who will lead that Labour Party.
There is another man in the party who will. His name is John Reid and he is currently the Home Secretary and has served previously as Northern Ireland Secretary, Defence Secretary and Minister for Transport. As Home Secretary, "homeland security" falls within his portfolio. A few weeks ago, he caused quite a stir when some radical, Muslims confronted him during a speech he gave in a London neighborhood.
Watch the video here.
And this one too (his speech at the Labour Party conference in which he calls on the country to stand up to Muslim extremists).
As for foreign minister Jack Straw's condemnation of the Muslim women's veil, I think he's being quite finicky. No woman should wear something or not wear something for his visual tastes and convenience.