Friday 11 October 2019

Tony Blair is fighting very hard against Boris to prevent Brexit

'“She was the most divisive prime minister of modern times.” As I go round talking about the new (final) volume of my biography of Margaret Thatcher, variants of this sentence are the most common opening line of questioning, especially on the BBC.' 
Charles Moore, Margaret Thatcher's official biographer, talking about her in the Daily Telegraph this week, to plug the third and final volume of the biography.

She was the most divisive Prime Minister of the post - war era until the Brexit referendum, but since then Tony Blair working behind the secrets has been even more divisive, using all his influence to persuade people who voted Remain to try to prevent Brexit - and to persuade the EU that Brexit can be prevented.

Freddy Sayers in a very good article explains how he helped scupper Mrs May's Withdrawal Agreement and has almost defeated Boris too.

'On 1 February 2017, the House of Commons voted to trigger Article 50 by 498 votes to 114, supported by more than 75% of Labour MPs. The BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg wrote an analysis entitled “Past the Point of no-return” in which she concluded, “tonight, for better or worse, few will believe that our journey to the exit door can be halted …the moment for turning back is past.”
'Just two weeks later, on 17 February, Tony Blair gave a speech at Bloomberg in which he railed against this spirit of acceptance, saying that people had a right to change their mind and that “our mission is to persuade them to do so”.
'The following month, he met EU negotiator Michel Barnier in person and pushed for an extension — just one of countless meetings with political leaders from the EU and the UK across the period. By February 2018, he estimated that the chances of “stopping Brexit” had increased to 50%.
'Fast forward another year, to January 2019, and he told European leaders (correctly, once again) that May’s government would not opt for no deal, and that if they held firm and refused to compromise, she would be forced to opt for an extension. Throughout, he overtly denigrated the idea of a ‘third way’
compromise as illogical and insisted that the only options that made sense were no-deal Brexit or no Brexit at all.

'Every time there was about to be a moment of agreement, he has been there, agitating against it. One by one, Left-leaning and centrist politicians and campaigners moved away from hoping for a soft Brexit and towards the idea that the whole thing could be cancelled. This was Tony Blair’s masterplan, and he executed it with aplomb.'
I have felt quite certain, without any proof, that the actions of Sir Oliver Lawson, Dominic Grieve and John Bercow in taking control of the House of Commons order paper from the Crown and giving it for the first time ever to backbench and opposition MPs were linked to and orchestrated by Tony Blair and Peter Mandelson. Tony Blair is a political genius who surpasses Harold Wilson and Margaret Thatcher in political skills. He is comparable to Mr. Gladstone who always had the Ace of Spades up his sleeve and always claimed that Almighty God put it there.

Tony Blair, by the way, kept very quiet about this enthusiasm for the EU while he was Leader of the Opposition, although he let it slip out in an interview in 1996 or 1997 with Minette Marin, then a Eurosceptic, now a Remainer. I remember noting it with surprise.

If the UK does, as I hope, leave the EU with a good deal, the acrimony and bitterness will divide the country for decades, largely because of Mr Blair. 

He is the reason why the signs tonight that a deal might be reached at the last moment that pleases the British government and the EU are being greeted with unhappiness by many Remainers in the media, such as the insufferable ex-Communist turned Neo-Con, David Aaronovitch, to give one example.

1 comment:

  1. Donald, Boris, and their followers are weirdly fixated on political has-beens. Like Tony Blair, who has been out of power for ten years and is reviled by the left as well as the right.

    If a satisfactory arrangement takes place after three years of worry, ideally the U.K. will see gratitude and a desire to move forward. Tony Blair will not be casting wicked spells over the land. Let's hope for what the Tories have been promising forever -- a decent deal.