After Brexit Secretary David Davis had pretended he was the victor in his meetings yesterday with Theresa May - he wasn’t - the briefing against the PM did not let up. She was guilty of alleged backsliding, Britain might never leave the EU under her watch, there needed to be a much more combative approach to these dastardly foreigners, all the usual delusion of grandeur was wheeled out. And then came an alleged leak.
An absolute Muppet. And Elmo from Sesame Street
London’s formerly very occasional Mayor Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, now inexplicably elevated to our very own comedy Foreign Secretary, had attended a reception at the Institute of Directors in central London, hosted by the Conservative Way Forward group, last heard of trying to explain away its role in the Tory bullying scandal. After the reception there was a dinner for an inner circle of just 20 people.
Here, Bozza held forth in characteristic style - bluster, pretence, misinformation and downright lying - with the whole shebang somehow covertly recorded and then released to the media. Now colour me sceptical, because I am sceptical, but there is no way that one of the select 20 attendees would have made the recording unless not just Bozza, but CWF, had given it their approval. It was not an accident.
The content of his outpourings shows exactly why the recording was leaked. We were “going to go into a phase where we are much more combative with Brussels” - that checks another box with hardline Brexiteers. He attacked Philip Hammond and the Treasury team: “That fear of short-term disruption has become so huge in people’s minds that it’s turning them all wet. Project Fear is really working on them”. Another Brexiteer box checked.
Bozza was “increasingly admiring of Donald Trump”. He was “convinced that there is method in his madness”. That one will please the Atlanticist right in the Tory Party - people like the disgraced former Defence Secretary Liam Fox, and indeed CWF.
The Irish border issue? You guessed it, that got rubbished too: “It’s so small and there are so few firms that actually use that border regularly, it’s just beyond belief that we’re allowing the tail to wag the dog in this way. We’re allowing the whole of our agenda to be dictated by this folly”. He knew this because he was Mayor of London, y’know.
“It’s the 21st century. You know, when I was mayor of London … I could tell where you all were just when you swiped your Oyster card over a tube terminal, a tube gizmo. The idea that we can’t track movement of goods, it’s just nonsense”. What if they don’t touch in?
It was all designed to achieve the same result as the bluster from David Davis - undermine Theresa May and make it easier for the Tory right to move on her if they think she is insufficiently enthusiastic about screwing the economy in pursuit of ideological purity.
So when one of those “friends of Bozza” told “This was a private dinner under Chatham House rules so it is sad and very disappointing that it has been covertly recorded and distributed to the media”, to that I call bullshit.
Bozza’s rant was recorded and leaked deliberately to undermine Theresa May, reinforcing her inability to sack the SOB. She’s too soft on the EU for CWF; hence their participation. And the Tory right still can’t do dirty tricks convincingly. No surprise there, then.
Chatham House?......Ah yes......Didn't Carroll Quigley have something to say about that rather strange organisation?
If the Oyster card analogy works for anyone, Stephen Bush (@stephenkb) taps in with a New Statesman comprehensive demolition job:
For sheer, blind ignorance (or, even worse deception and self-deception) there's that Johnsonian flourish about the NI border:
It’s so small and there are so few firms that actually use that border regularly, it’s just beyond belief that we’re allowing the tail to wag the dog in this way. We’re allowing the whole of our agenda to be dictated by this folly.
30,000+ are daily trans-Border commuters (that's particularly noticeable at Derry). Something not unadjacent to 75,000 vehicles make the crossing each working day — as I recall, a traffic survey showed around 6,000 HGVs in that daily count. And the exchange has been growing. Oh, and that's only on the 'official' main routes.
Anyone driven the N54/A3 between Cavan and Armagh? That involves crossing the Border five times, including a traverse of the infamous Drummully Polyp (a.k.a. Coleman Island).
Meanwhile, let's hear it for Penka, the pregnant cow who ambled across from Bulgaria to Serbia, into the EU, and so — as an illegal — was required to be slaughtered. The plain people of Ireland (© Flann O'Brien) smirked at that one as an omen.
1. My first reaction was exactly the same as yours, Tim. But has any one of the leading media 'correspondents' even suggested it and its tactical purpose as being a possibility???????
2. As a tactical master stroke it's pretty bloody feeble and amateurish, isn't it?
Bozza, the blusterer, full of it just like The Brexit Bulldog, Dominic Cummings and Nigel' The Haddock' Farage know Brexit won't be delivering fluffy rainbows and pretty unicorns.
So the only way they will get Brexit on their terms is by threatening The Maybot via briefing against her or threatening to resign.
Cowards the whole shower are the Brexiteers, I do hope Bojo does become PM, then he can clean up his own mess and lose the next election.
Boris Johnson was recorded as saying:
I just talked to Mike Pompeo, my counterpart in the US State Department. What they want us to do is to use our nuclear expertise to dismantle Kim Jong-Un’s nuclear missile. [sic] [my emphasis]
That’s what he asked me to do today.
What does this mean?
We know that the real reason NK started making noises about denuclearisation. Its (weakened) test site partially collapsed shortly after a detonation in September 2017 and, making a virtue of a necessity, it announced a halt to testing in April 2018. It seemed to signal a halt to the intimidation of NK’s neighbours that such detonations cause.
That still leaves the missiles though and we know that NK, in intimidating moves, has fired them over Japan. Will this intimidation continue?
The missiles are presumably tested at another site (which is still viable?) and could still be fired. The missiles fired to date have, presumably, never carried live warheads, not even those made of chemical explosive. And now, with nuclear testing halted, the probability of them ever carrying nuclear warheads seems low.
Is the Trump Administration now looking to remove NK’s missile capability and is asking the UK to get involved in this ? NK was presumably trying to develop nuclear warheads capable of being carried by a missile—not an easy task—so is he asking for UK intelligence on the development of such warheads? The UK certainly has some expertise in this area having developed the Chevaline multi-warhead for Trident.
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