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Obama snubs Brown

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Gordon Brown

“Special relationship” marred

Gordon Brown’s much heralded trip to the UN in New York must have  been somewhat like accepting the invitation of the wicked witch in Sleeping Beauty, and the “Big Apple” has bitten back at Britain as a consequence of Labour’s oil for prisoner deal with Libya. Hoping that a grandstanding display on the world stage would boost his flagging popularity in advance of Labour’s Conference next week, blundering Brown’s itinerary yesterday was wrecked marred by President Obama’s administration as they tried their hardest not to allow Britain’s Prime Minister to be seen with the leader of the free world. Indeed even his speaking slot at the UN was pushed further back after a rambling 100 minutes from Libya’s Col. Gadaffi as Foreign Office officials desperately tried to cajole Obama into holding a face to face photo opportunity with Brown. It was not to be after the Americans felt slighted by Britain’s furtherance of our own “special relationship” with the former sponsor of state terrorism Libya, as we offloaded the Lockerbie bomber and sent Northern Ireland’s best policemen to Libya to train Gadaffi’s  own forces in the fight against crime and terror. All in exchange for a little further energy security I may add.

Five attempts were made to set up a meeting between Obama and Brown and they resulted in a desultory fifteen minute “walk and talk” through the kitchens of the UN HQ in New York as the leaders were hustled out away from the waiting cameras, clearly Britain’s “special relationship” with the US has taken a bit of a knock this week. As Brown prepares his thoughts for his probable last conference as Labour leader his Foreign Secretary, South Shields MP David Miliband, has been more concerned with trying to twist “I’madinnerjacket’s” arm over Iran’s nuclear intentions  and securing a new deal on climate change with other world leaders (in between chewing on frozen Galaxy/KitKat bars.) It does make you wonder just how well the mandarins at the FCO want Britain to appear in the eyes of the average Yank.

So Brown will return to Britain to face his party not with the sounds of a ringing endorsement from the rest of the world ringing in his ears, but the deadly scrape of knives being sharpened once again as party activists and fearful MPs get increasingly jittery over the coming general election. We can be assured that a whispering campaign will be under way as up to 150 Labour MPs face the prospect of losing their seats if  Labour’s position in the polls continues as it has done for the past twelve months.

While Charles Clarke may feel like Brown ought to the decent thing and resign over “ill health” I see no sign that Brown has any intention of bowing to his former colleague, he will bluster on, after making a stand next week, and lead his party to a thumping humiliating defeat next year. The path will then be opened to allow Labour it’s chance to rebuild under a new leader.

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Written by curly

September 24, 2009 at 10:04 am

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