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Hold up! Before you read on, please read this...

This post was published more than 14 years ago

I keep old posts on the site because I often enjoy reading old content on other people's sites. It can be interesting to see how views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have, to put it mildly, mellowed.

I'm not a believer in brushing the past under the carpet. I've written some offensive rubbish on here in the past: deleting it and pretending it never happened doesn't change that. I hope that stumbling across something that's 14 years old won't offend anyone anew, because I hope that people can understand that what I thought and felt and wrote about then is probably very different to what I think and feel and wrote about now. It's a relic of an (albeit recent) bygone era.

So, given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views may well have changed in the last 14 years. I have written some very silly things over the years, many of which I find utterly cringeworthy today.
  • This post might use words or language in ways which I would now consider highly inappropriate, offensive, embarrassing, or all three.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken, and embedded material might not appear properly.

Okay. Consider yourself duly warned. Read on...

I am afraid that it is now clear to me that by failing to reveal your full legal advice and the considerations that underpinned your final advice, you misled the Cabinet and therefore helped obtain support for military action improperly. This is a very serious matter in relation to the war in Iraq, the integrity of your office, your own integrity and the proper working of UK constitutional arrangements.

So says Claire Short, which is good for her, I guess. Though not so good for Mr Blair, who just looks worse and worse as this story progresses. This means, of course, that the legal advice is very damaging, because otherwise he’d have released it and defended it under his masochism strategy. So he’s holding out until he’s out of office, and they can’t touch him. The problem with this stategy is if it somehow gets out before then, which these kinds of documents have a habit of doing, particularly when many in your own party are against you. This could be Mr Howard’s magic weapon to beat Mr Blair with – if he produces this just before the election, it wouldn’t take much for Labour to lose this election. But Mr Howard has a habit of playing these big things all wrong, and would probably end up looking bad himself somehow or other. But this could be political dynamite.

This 427th post was filed under: Election 2005, News and Comment.

Some recently published posts

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A flying visit to Copenhagen / July 2019, 9 minutes long

What I’ve been reading this month / June 2019, 6 minutes long

Reflecting on my first ten years as a doctor / June 2019, 8 minutes long

What I’ve been reading this month / June 2019, 6 minutes long

Some random old posts

Review: Only Time Will Tell by Jeffrey Archer / September 2012, 2 minutes long

36 Grays Lane / July 2007, 1 minute long

Funeral music revisited / June 2007, 2 minutes long

The online-only Mormon missionaries / October 2014, 1 minute long

Telegraph mistake / July 2005, Less than a minute long

The trouble with Attorneys General / March 2007, 2 minutes long


Comments and responses

Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)


by sjhoward

Comment posted at 01:10 on 26th August 2005.

So he’s holding out until he’s out of office, and they can’t touch him. The problem with this stategy is if it somehow gets out before then, which these kinds of documents have a habit of doing, particularly when many in your own party are against you.

That wasn’t half bad as a prediction…

This could be Mr Howard’s magic weapon to beat Mr Blair with

…but that was pretty awful.


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