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..There's a little Samuel Pepys in all of us..

Sunday, June 24, 2007

It's been thirty minutes or so, since Gordon Browns coronation as the new Leader of The Labour Party, and as the new Prime Minister..
The country hasn't fallen part yet..
But what has been the main topic for analytical conversation, is a dissection of Tony's ten years in office...
There are those who see him as a 'visionary'.. who's tenure will be recalled for the forging of links with Europe while maintaining a distance from the amalgamation process.. the consolidation of the bond between Britain and the US.. the improvements at home, such as the increase of the minimum wage and the deft handling of the immense problems within the National Health Service, and the benefit system for an increasingly geriatric population.. improvements in the education system (mind you there are those who would point to that particular issue and disagree completely with the direction Labour has taken us over the past decade..).
There are those who see him as a man who has taken this country down a road that is endlesss, and that will literally take decades to veer away from.. Those who would point to that which has been done concerning internal management, and perhaps correctly point out that any government in power, would have been faced with the same problems, and would have perhaps dealt better with had another hand been on the helm..
The view from Europe itself, appears to be a favourable review for Tony's time in office. They point to his involvement within the European Union..
But there are those on the Continent who point to his Brussels Speech in 1999, in which Tony's decision to leave the decision to discard the Pound and adopt the Euro to the British public in a plebescite.. and his insistance that Britains expanded involvement depended on expansion of the Union.. and when that came to pass, it was precisely the relaxation of passage throughout the Union countries that Britain objected to..
And the same objection raised to Britain's stance on a European Constitution, and Britain's blocking of the adoption of the Berlin Agreement..
But, the one issue which in all eyes clouded Tony's tenture, was Iraq.
Consensus was complete, that the stance of standing 'Shoulder to Shoulder' with the US, blotted Tony's copy book irreparably.
The split this caused with the European Nations was immense.. and the image that projected at the time, that of Tony being 'George's poodle'.. did damage both to future consideration of Tony's judgement, and the reputation of his Party.
Now it will also be recognised that all Party's in the Commons voted to support the US, but there has been constant debate for the past few months, as to the depth of our full commitment in Iraq..
Our Foreign Secretary has yesterday announced, that we will need to maintain a military presence in Afghanistan for, most likely, the next 30 years..
Now Afghanistan is an area the British man on the street sees as an hereditary conflict.. We've been there on and off for the past two hundred years..
But Iraq?
More and more opinion is going to turn in this country.. that while we will always be allies of the Americans, this particular conflict is theirs.. A commitment from us in Iraq, similar to that which we will have to make in Afghanistan..(should issues be examined without prejudice..) would not sit well with the British public..
This will be remembered as Tonys War.. just as the Falklands was Thatchers and the Second World War Churchills..
The outcome of this conflict, and the time Gordon has to make some impressive international diplomatic moves, will decide how History judges our involvement..
There have also been some general impressions of Gordon expressed which have not been put forward before. There are those who have always seen the Chancellor in the background, a gruff and imposing figure who delivered some absolutely terrible budgets, along with a few strokes of financial brilliance to ballance it all out..who now say he an 'intelligent and perspecatious man', who could possibly bring Labour out of the mire they are bogged in..
And should Gordon need some encouragement, today's polls have Labour leading the Conservatives, albeit by the slightest of margins, for the first time in eight months.
It is a circus act Tony has left Gordon.. a tightwire act involving a plethora of desperately important issues which Labour must address, and show some success with over the next 18 months..
Watch for Gordon and French President Sarkozi to become fast friends..
Watch for Angela Merkel to become Gordon's buddy as well..
And watch how Gordon handles the 'George Issue'.. for Gordon is aware that George himself is leaving.. that the next American Government will almost certainly be Democrat.. but George has less time than Gordon does before he vacates or wins..
Gordon can hang on until 2010.. and dealing with an American Party which is also re-considering it's role in the Middle East could make his successfull withdrawal from the war an honourable option..
Much to consider for our Gordon..
We'll look at them, as they rise to the surface.. and compare that which is emerging, to that which we are told actually comes into view..
Should be fun..

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