Sunday, June 01, 2014

TOO MUCH TO ASK ?


I suppose at my age I should know better but it seems that the older I get the more frustrating things become.   And important things too.   For example, the Chilcot Inquiry into the run-up to the Iraq War, which is already four years late thanks to a ridiculous wrangle between the Inquiry team and the unelected chief mandarin, Sir Jeremy Heywood.

The argument was all about the release of communications between Tony Blair and George Bush with Heywood citing confidentiality and compromise to the so-called `special relationship` between whoever might be the future US President and the UK Prime Minister.   Last week, in a blaze of indifference, reports emerged of a deal whereby the `gist` of some of those communications could be released but not the actual detail of what went on.   Fudge masquerading as progress.   What will now follow is the extraordinary process of `Maxwellisation` whereby anyone likely to be remotely criticised by the Inquiry will be sent drafts of the Inquiry report and invited to submit comments which might be reflected in the final report.

And so it goes on and despite indications that the final report might appear `before the end of the year` I`ll believe it when I see it - or what`s left of it following doubtless copious `redaction`, aka censorship.   Sometimes the truth seems forever out of reach and I wonder if it`s too much to ask for people to have the courage to tell it like it is - or was in this case - and understand that `the public` will be more impressed with honesty, however painful, than with obfuscation and denial.

It`s the same with the often promised referendum on the EU.   We are seriously supposed to believe that IF the Tories get back into power after next year`s General Election, IF Dave Cameron can successfully renegotiate Britain`s relationship with the EU and IF the other 27 EU countries led by German Chancellor Angela Merkel will all agree to Cameron`s demands then we will have a referendum in 2017 which the Tories will campaign for the UK to stay in Europe anyway.   

It`s all Alice in Wonderland stuff.  Once again, reality seems to be elusive and out of reach and I wonder if it`s too much to ask that politicians might one day keep their manifesto promises and for once, just once, heed the frustrations and expectations of those they claim to represent.   

But then I`m a Saints fan, so I know all about frustration and expectation, don`t I?  To be fair.

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