President Donald Trump Threatens To Close Border Next Week: 'We're Not Playing Games' | NBC News

op 2 of mexico is back en absolue klier poacher moet hier naar de steeds dhd great surplus of over hungry binnen en dalers zoetjes park duurdere niet marianne cnc verder van manier en hier in de woorden stapt de strongest immigration was anywhere in the world en we hebben de week is dan most beperk los nummer longkanker zesde act en dan bedoel mexico en leek zo matje van een van die rijdend states and saw many other games zo manieren se zvh to grab a en f de staat met twee en right now two big air mens coming up van guatemala massive caravans fokking life from mexico zal mexico schaft week in de slapen met een chosen a few nou dat je een stapel en het nederlands tafel met floating de boren door closen er wordt motief de klas verlangt naar mama play games mexico les te starten de app people coming right to mexico dit zolang very dangerous journey mexico sense was een wees en crush day dus absoluut lieve charlotte het bon boys er ophef stap is en ook doe en ik denk de slapen great danser die caravans for uit en dit frame een stuk normale de handdouche el salvador domani gozer humor hoe je binnen een 5 hungry leeg en dalers wil jullie hem tremendous een hoe staat hij met toegang deurs je woorden malen en tiel els zelfde door hey en baby's viewers for checking out youtube channel subscribe by clicking on my button down hier en click on any videos over vier te westerlee dus interview highlights and digital expositie thanks for watching

Why Are Politicians Doubling Down On Their Offensive Comments? | Velshi & Ruhle | MSNBC

this just in cNN has just filed a lawsuit against the White House the network is demanding the return of the White House press credentials for their reporter Jim Acosta and they're also accusing the White House officials of violating CNN and Acosta's First Amendment rights and if you think that's not normal now Mississippi Senator Cindy hyde-smith she's doubling down defending her comments after joking about attending a public hanging video of the Republican making remarks first surfaced over the weekend the senator then released this statement quote in a comment on November 2nd I referred to accepting an invitation to a speaking engagement in referencing the one who invited me I used an exaggerated expression of regard and any attempt to turn this into a negative connotation is ridiculous reporters surprise surprise pressed her on this yesterday I put out a statement yesterday and we stand by the statement and that's all I'm going to say about it hyde-smith faces they run off on November 27th with Democrat Mike SB who is african-american joining me now MSNBC contributor and Princeton University professor Eddie Glaude and back with me former senator bob torricelli Eddie there's a lot to go through here every day we're trying to figure out do we follow the the most recent this is unheard of this is unprecedented this is crazy because when we do many people say oh you're just chasing the most recent shiny distraction but in not covering them and not talking about these issues the risk we run Eddie is that our norms are being pushed out of whack and our democracy the foundation of this nation was built on those norms yeah what we've experienced since 2016 and actually but a little bit before that Stephanie is Normie Rosen that the kind of basic common sense agreements that we've had that we've held that kind of stabilize our democracy have been tossed out of the window and here what we see I think is really interesting is the effects of the discussion of discourse around political correctness that somehow to apologize to engage in a kind of decent to demonstrate decency with regards to people who are different from you if somehow a sign of weakness when in fact what it becomes is justification for violin harmful and hurtful remarks and what's interesting about synthesis via hyde-smith here there's a tendency Stephanie for people to play fast and loose with my our dead with black people's dead it's not like lynching is an ancient practice their folks are walking in Mississippi right now who have relatives who were lynched who have people who have dead people because of that violent ritual of American of the American South that Mississippi was excellent at so it was real was crude it wasn't just simply an exaggerated expression of public regard it was crude insensitivity it was harmful it was ugly and and I think she needs to go down to Bryan Stevens's Museum over in Birmingham and get a sense of the depth of violence and violence of that of that practice it's also not an expression senator translating this idea of hyper political correctness and what is common decency and what concerns me is she didn't really apologize she said don't turn this into something negative and and she brushed it aside attempt to what does it say that she doesn't believe she will pay a political or ethical price it's as though there's no shame well first of all she's either as just suggested incredibly insensitive where she's an idiot my kids would be thrown out of school but my son would be expelled from school if he suggested something I've noted my caste all my adult life I served in the house with them first of all Mike I am so sorry that you and your family have to be part of a discussion where someone would have the audacity to raise lynching I get upset even saying this while you're trying to serve your country it it is beyond the pale and I've tried to think it's an italian-american what someone could have said to me that would have been as offensive to me and my family there isn't anything there is anything it would like being in a race as a Jewish American and having a Holocaust denial if the history of this there's a wonderful new book out the warmth of another Sun if you if there's anyone left in America who doesn't know the history of lynching hard though it is to believe the public spectacles the thousands of people the people not not to not grown men lynch whole families thousands of people who gather to celebrate the deaths you grew up in Mississippi you want to serving the United States Senate and you didn't know this history it is impossible anyway Mike I'm sorry if I'm sorry you have to endure it Cindy I may feel no shame but I've shame you ma'am I got to ask you about this Eddie this story I didn't want to believe it it is making headlines and it is yet another example of the deterioration of norms please look at this picture a Wisconsin School District is investigating after a photo of what appears to be a group of mostly white male students holding up a Nazi salute this image went viral this is 2018 Eddie when I saw this for the first time last night I'm a fool I'm naive I didn't want to believe it was true my husband I looked at it I looked at it upside down I looked at it backwards I looked at pictures of my sons dabbing with their friends saying maybe I'm confused but I'm not this is 2018 there were parents of these kids taking that picture how concerned are you that this is where we are Stephanie there's so much ugliness in our country right now so much disregard for the humanity of others it begins at the top but it doesn't start there it he's just an exaggerated indication of the ugliness that's in us those those are those are children young men engaging in the Nazis by the way let's remember those are children who are not so hating and so part of what we're standing at the precipice this is a crisis moment a unique inflection point the nation will have to decide whether or not it's going to be racist or not these aren't these aren't outlier Stephanie these aren't you know individual monsters these are our children this is us we have to decide whether or not we're going to be racist or not and that's not going to we can't hide anymore it's all out in the open you can't put this genie back in the bottle and so we're gonna have to decide who we're going to be who do we take ourselves to be and that decision is going to say that this has to be rooted in that is no longer acceptable and it must be banished once and for all from our body politic and until we do that we will see even more we will see even uglier things in the immediate future in even uglier even more vile things Stephanie on the immediate horizon because this is where we are right now mind you that politics is the ultimate consumer business it's the last great competitive industry in America it is consumer led when people do this and candidates say these things and they behave this way they're doing it because they have a market it isn't simply the candidates they know what they are doing people will respond to it that's the greater danger I'm gonna respond to it with love for all those boys in those pictures in that picture you're teenagers you have a chance to be better today be better tomorrow and we're gonna teach you to do that and I'm so sorry that your parents or your community and your school didn't but you have the chance to be great tomorrow and I believe in you hey there I'm Chris Hayes from MSNBC thanks for watching MSNBC on YouTube if you want to keep up to date with the videos we're putting out you can click subscribe just below me or click over on this list to see lots of other great videos

House Democrats Begin Public Hearings On Mueller Report | Velshi & Ruhle | MSNBC

welcome back I'm Stephanie ruhle House Democrats are not committing to impeachment proceedings but short of that they are doing everything they can to keep the President and Robert Muller's report in public eye this week that includes two congressional hearings and a full house vote on whether to hold Attorney General William Bar and former White House Counsel Don Magan it's civil contempt first up a hearing in the Judiciary Committee that will feature testimony from John Dean President Nixon's White House Counsel who testified against his former boss during the Watergate hearings back in 1973 Joyce maths is a former US attorney and professor at the University of Alabama law school and she will also be testifying in this afternoon's hearing also joining the conversation Matt Miller a former chief spokesperson for the Justice Department Joyce obviously we should note you are an MSNBC contributor but you are testifying on your own today as a former US Attorney with a whole lot of expertise what can you tell us about your testimony and why you think this hearing is going to be so valuable it's an interesting hearing Stephanie because today when we testify and I'll be there with my former colleague barb McQuaid who is the US attorney in Detroit Michigan when I was the US Attorney in Alabama and we're there not because we have personal political views but we're there to lend our expertise as prosecutors and talk with the committee about how prosecutors evaluate evidence in an investigation and how they compare that and analyze it in light of the legal standards the elements you have to prove in order to establish a crime and and how we would make charging decisions given the the body of evidence that the Moller report has compiled Matt John Dean is going to testify today yes he's an expert on what happened to Richard Nixon 40 years ago but what does he bring to the table because many people are saying it's odd he has nothing to do with this and Republicans of course are saying this is just political theater ignore it you know it's a fair question I don't know if you're a fan of all country music and know that old Charlie Robinson song you're not the best but you're the best that I can do but I think that's a little bit how I think of this hearing today which is not a slide against Joyce obvious she's the best in my book and this hearing is important but look the committee wanted to have a bunch of other witnesses by now they wanted to have Bob Muller before the committee they wanted to have Don began before the committee but they've been unable to get that done so I think what you see now is a two-track strategy so while they go to court to try to compel testimony from witnesses like Don McGann they're going to bring other witnesses like Joyce and John Dean and barb McQuaid who can come in and speak to what the Moller report shows which is pretty clear evidence that the cook the president committed obstruction of justice and a number of occasions most Americans don't know that I think the point of today's hearing is to bring experts in to explain that while the committee separately goes to court to try to get the witnesses from the Muller report compelled to appear then to that point Joyce these hearings are not fact-finding missions John Dean Barbara and yourself were not involved in this administration it seems more that they're simply trying to shine a spotlight and explain more to the American people most of whom have not read the report I think that's right Stephanie this is table setting this is helping people understand the context in which the events that the Moller report examined occurred and and Matt makes an important point and all acknowledge being the best that they can do because the real shame here is that folks who should have complied with subpoenas to appear in front of this committee because Congress has an article one oversight function to comply with the fact that those subpoenas have been essentially ignored is shameful it's a violation of the norms I know people get tired of hearing us talk about norms being violated but these are so essential to the functioning of our government hopefully the American people will begin to see that but here's the issue it's setting a table for those who are already at the table who believe that there is obstruction of justice who are going to be watching this saying hell yes but does it move the needle in any way Matt tomorrow you've got this houseboat does the vote make any difference because even if they agreed to hold bar and begin in contempt here's what gets me does any of it matter when is it going to happen in my little mind I would think subpoenas and being held in contempt would actually cost you something well look I think you're seeing the committee there they're always kind of two things in congressional oversight one is try to move the needle needle on public opinion and I don't know that a contempt vote does that and I think that could the house may actually not hold the two of them in contempt but the other thing that's going to happen on the floor is a very separate second piece of it which is authorize the committees to go to court so while moving that you that may in itself not move the needle on public opinion it gives the committee's the ability to go to court and try to enforce these subpoenas you know I think you've seen as Joyce said a bunch of witnesses just kind of flagrantly thumb their nose at the committee's lawful exercise of their constitutional authority and so what they're what Congress is being forced to do what the house is being forced to do is go to court and what what that vote in the house did we'll do tomorrow is give the committee's a chance to be able to do that more quick so it gives not just the G okay but Intel and banking and all the others who are seeing witnesses from inside out the and outside administration's just completely Stonewall the chance to try to break down that wall hey there I'm Chris Hayes from MSNBC thanks for watching MSNBC on YouTube if you want to keep up to date with the videos we're putting out you can click subscribe just below me or click over on this list to see lots of other great videos

Nancy Pelosi Reportedly Tells Democrats She Wants To See Donald Trump ‘In Prison’ | NBC Nightly News

tonight House Speaker Nancy Pelosi escalating her war of words against the president Politico reporting that during a meeting Tuesday she was pressed by Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler to start impeachment proceedings NBC News has learned from a congressional source in the room Pelosi then said about the president I don't want to see him impeached I want to see him in prison Pelosi has indicated she wants the president prosecuted after leaving office a spokesperson for the speaker would not confirm the comments at the somber ceremonies in Normandy today Pelosi didn't want to get political telling MBC's Andrea Mitchell with all due respect to your question on my but against the same Normandy backdrop the president took aim at Pelosi when he was asked whether Special Counsel Robert Muller should testify he made such a fool out of himself equally nervous Nancy Nancy Pelosi doesn't talk about it Nancy Pelosi is a disaster okay she's a disaster and let her do what she wants you know what I think they're in big trouble tonight Pelosi is facing pushback from a growing number of Democrats calling for an impeachment inquiry up to 60 House members but Pelosi insists it's too soon we're following the facts well take them where they lead us according to Politico Judiciary Chairman Nadler told some Democrats he might subpoena Robert Muller in the next two weeks Nadler has said he's confident Muller will come in soon but it will be behind closed doors hey NBC News fans thanks for checking out our YouTube channel subscribe by clicking on that button down here and click on any of the videos over here to watch the latest interviews show highlights and digital exclusives thanks for watching

President Donald Trump Associates Call For Mueller To Testify | Deadline | MSNBC

DC where a few miles from here Donald Trump is still stewing and fuming and tweeting about Robert Miller's press conference and the prospect that it may have increased his chances of being impeached among the ripple effects of that historic appearance by robert muller this week Elizabeth Warren one of the first Democratic presidential candidates a call for Donald Trump's impeachment today proposed shredding the DOJ policy that places presidents above the law from her proposal quote Congress should make it clear the president can be indicted for criminal activity including obstruction of justice and when I'm president I'll appoint Justice Department officials who will reverse flawed policies so no president is shielded from criminal accountability and while we're on the topic of accountability new comments today from Attorney General Bill Barr who says he's not worried about his legacy or political capital in his words everyone dies adding he does not regret taking the job in many ways I'd rather be back to my old life but I think that I love the Department of Justice I love the FBI I think it's important that we not in this period of intense partisan feelings destroy our institutions I think one of the ironies today is that people are saying that it's President Trump that's shredding our institutions I really see no evidence of that from my perspective the idea of resisting a democratically elected president and basically throwing everything Hahnemann and you know really changing the norms on the grounds that we have to stop this president that's where the shredding of our of our norms and our institutions is occurring really stop and think about what he said for a second and how appropriate it is that the man who decided unilaterally what Robert Miller would not that there wasn't enough evidence to say that the President had committed a crime also seized not enough evidence that Trump is shredding institutions mr. Attorney General has this for evidence everybody sees what's going on in the Justice Department was for justice now with quotes these are really really dishonest people and they're bad people and I really think they don't like our country I really believe that questions from CNN is fake news I don't take questions from CNG that's okay I know you're not thinking you never do this was an Obama judge and I'll tell you what it's not going to happen like this anymore there was treason and it should never be allowed to happen to another president again ever ever ever I think father is a true never jumper 18 Trump haters including people that work for Hillary Clinton and some of the worst human beings on earth shredding institutions is his thing and on top of all that new calls from Republicans now for robert muller to testify so that they might make the fox news highlight reel Rudy Giuliani saying Republican Congressmen would eviscerate Muller but the special counsel is afraid Sean Hannity parroting that insisting Muller doesn't want to answer questions from Jim Jordan Mark meadows and Matt Gaetz it's worth pointing out testimony from Muller is unlikely at this point he said on Wednesday that he's retiring and that the report speaks for itself and in this post fact era championed by the current president some are wondering if Muller's by-the-book dedication to a lawful process makes him ill suited for the moment New York Times writing today quote mr. Muller seemed to expect that the system would work as it had in the past with Congress or perhaps voters making the decision about whether mr. Trump had committed a crime only to see the president's hand-picked attorney general and mr. Muller's longtime friend make his own determination that there was not enough evidence to support such a charge and that is where we start today with some of our favorite reporters and friends Cara Lee is an NBC national political correspondent joining us from Los Angeles Times White House reporter Eli Stokes plus former Democratic congresswoman in Washington Post columnist Donna Edwards making some headlines of her own today also joining us is former US Attorney Joyce Vance and Chuck Rosenberg former senior FBI official and US attorney Chuck I've been waiting to talk to you all week about this extraordinary performance from Robert Muller and I want your thoughts on all of it but but but first I want to know if you have a theory on the case as to why Barre is so obsessed with bracketing everything everything his alleged friend Robert Muller does going out five times before his friend Robert Muller releases his report racing to do a sit-down with be at news the minute the minute Robert Muller leaves the podium at DOJ and continuing to disparage the process by which Robert Muller reached his conclusion on the obstruction investigation right it seems like it's really hard for the truth to catch up to Bill Barr dobar is sprinting ahead of it you know I want to just take a moment to address what the New York Times wrote about Bob Muller and I think it addresses your question Nicole you know is Bob the right man at the right time for this task and to my mind and I'm admittedly biased the answer is absolutely yes what we need now more than ever is somebody who plays by the rules Bob Muller is the epitome of that person and what you see perhaps are those that we criticize for shredding norms now including the Attorney General the United States by the way who bridle at the things that Bob Muller does and stands for and says and so if I had to choose a path even if it's less effective I would choose the path that Bob Mollica walked I will say this bar holds a robust view of article 2 of the Constitution and so perhaps he and you know and I'm not sure I believe the words about to come out of my mouth but perhaps he in good faith thinks the President of the United States didn't commit a crime fine he was entitled to his opinion but he's not entitled to disparage Bob Muller or his work or to leave him out there hanging if Bill Barr really had difficulty with what Bob Muller did he remains his boss he could demand that that Muller give him his conclusion it just seems like they're trying to set up a very good man and I find it highly distressing let me just drill down on what bar is doing bar is still Chuck Rosenberg disparaging and targeting the refusal to say that Donald Trump did not commit crimes when he obstructed the investigation Robert Muller I think you'd agree chooses his words like a precision missile said when an individual obstructs an investigation that individual clearly Donald Trump the investigation obviously his own what Barr is doing now is I think trying to stick a stick in the axle there and stop the wheels of justice from grinding up from the special counsel's office to Capitol Hill which is where they appeared to be going after special counsel Muller's press conference on Wednesday can you explain why bar would be so determined to do that why the open question about criminality around obstruction is still so dangerous and so terrifying to the president right because if the question on criminality is decided if it's resolved if it's resolved the way that Muller and his team obviously think it should be resolved then this president ought to be impeached by Democrats by Republicans by libertarians by independence by everybody up there and so if you want to save the president you have to talk about him in ways that just don't square with the truth you have to say that there was an exoneration you have to say that there was no collusion you have to say that it was a hoax you have to characterize it as a witch-hunt you have to do everything Nicole but read the darn report once you get into the details once you get into those stubborn facts what you see is a pattern of obstruction of justice and oh by the way we don't need to convict a president of obstruction of justice to remove him from office we just have to reduce those facts in an impeachment trial to remove him from office and so what I think you're seeing on the other side is an attempt to hide two outfits off you skate right to to sort of decode the facts and I think that's really dangerous it's not new we've seen a lot of it but I think it's really dangerous I have one more for you jack and then I'm gonna open this up but I spent a lot of the week trying to I've a seven year old so I spend a lot of my life trying to boil things down to seven-year-old comprehension and I'm not saying the Congress is seven but you can take from that parallel whatever you want so presidential motorcade speed I've been in a lot of them they speed for safety they speed to get through sometimes dangerous cities they speed for efficiency and they speed because most presidential motorcades drive on closed freeways they drive above the speed limit no police officer sits on the side of the freeway with that you know speed gun to catch them and no presidential motorcade vehicle receives a ticket doesn't mean they weren't speeding a former national security official said that was a suitable analogy to obstruction just because Muller wasn't examining or prosecuting Donald Trump for the crime of obstruction doesn't mean he wasn't obstructing and just because at the end he didn't write him a ticket for obstruction of justice doesn't mean that he couldn't be charged if he were anyone else is that an appropriate parallel absolutely and I think it's actually a good way to think about it lots of people do things that are wrong and don't get caught or don't get charged for it you know in the world of criminal tax evasion not civil tax mistakes but criminal tax evasion we know we catch a very small percentage of people who cheat on their taxes so you can cheat on your taxes and go to jail you can cheat on your taxes and skate by but the conduct is still cheating on your taxes or speeding down a freeway even if it's shut down to the regular public and so I think the analogy works what Bob Muller found was a set of facts that would for anybody else on the planet constitute an obstruction of justice the fact that he couldn't charge the president with it based on DOJ policy doesn't mean the president didn't do it so I think your analogy is spot-on Joyce Vance let me ask you to jump in on what is not not a good-faith campaign on the part of Rudy Giuliani or Sean Hannity for the public or the Congress to hear from Robert S Mulliken astir and very different but calls from the right some of the president's allies to have robert muller on capitol hill to be pressed by jacket list Jim Jordan what's that about so we all know what it's about we've seen this dog-and-pony show before this won't be about asking questions of director Muller it will be about congressmen jumping up and down on their stage using the bully pulpit to make statements and then ending their statements with a question mark at the end so they remain within the procedural rules of the house it's I I think unfortunate it may be worth it so here's from Bob Muller firsthand in that forum perhaps being questioned more cohesively by Democrats but this is just another part of the Republican effort to discredit a man who is Chuck I think has said very eloquently has played by the rules has tried to preserve the country when those around him seem to be burning down its norms at a frightening pace and we're gonna get to your calls because it's double sided right I mean we saw the power of nine minutes from robert muller to move this conversation to move people's understanding about what was in the report and there is a valid and legitimate wish desire effort to see more of that on Capitol Hill to educate the public and that's what you write about today right it is I mean I think it's actually really important to be able to tell a story that is a full narrative and my fear right now is that Democrats have spread this information out across six different committees multiple subpoenas and court proceedings and it's kind of incoherent for the American public and I think it is important to hear from Bob Muller and frankly in a select committee setting or something like that they can actually set the terms where there's questioning from counsel and not from members where members pass off questions to counsel to try to tell a story they don't have to have the terms of the debate set like ordinary congressional hearings and I think that's what Democrats need to do and if the American people don't hear it in that way and I describe it as the difference between reading a book and I read the book and seeing the movie the movie kind of sticks with you because that's the kind of world that we're in people are busy and Democrats in order to move public opinion have to begin to tell the story otherwise they don't have the narrative at all where are we though in that process I talked to a former national security official who thought that that the moment was slipping away from Democrats well I think it's I think it's close I think the danger here is that the president pretends in his language that he wants to bring impeachment on I don't believe it for a minute you need his tweets you look at his demeanor and a you know on a press cluster this is somebody who is fearing impeachment like you know you fear the measles he wants he doesn't want impeachment Democrats should not run away from it and frankly the Constitution requires it all right now to the people who know more than I than all of us the reporters where is this story going what is the president doing because the president disagrees with Sean Hannity and Rudy Giuliani he tweeted last week I don't know why the radical left Democrats want Bob Muller I guess that's you to testify when he just issued a 40 million dollar report that states loud and clear for all to hear no collision no obstruction now he's got a different message or at least his friends do and maybe it's thinking that that is not what Robert Muller concluded where is the White House on the Moller testimony on Barras antics and on where this thing is heading well clearly they were a bit nervous watching him on television unsure of what he was going to say they had some you know imagery ready to tweet out afterwards saying case closed and everything else but I think the reason that the White House is sending out this message that we what you do not comply with these subpoenas from House Democrats is because they appreciate the value of a televised hearing they understand what that would mean for the country how everybody would focus on the president understands the power of television as well as anybody and and he knows that you sit Bob Muller there for several hours and everybody in the country is watching it that's going to be a serious moment and that may change public opinion in a way that a lot of other things have not I think Bob mower also understands the spectacle that that would be and that's why not to disagree with anything that Chuck said about Bob mower and his Constitution and how he he sees things and not wanting to get involved in something that would come across incredibly partisan but that is if he decides not to go testify that is depriving the Democrats of that opportunity just as the way that his you know because he's following the rules he's thinking I can't say this explicitly that the president of – justice so I will say the president you know if I could have said that if I could have exonerated him I would have he's basically in the absence of saying that proving a negative saying you can deduce what I'm saying but he enables the White House to come and basically do the opposite and Sarah Sanders and everybody else to say well see if he if he'd been able to prove it he had a moral obligation to say so so they're just flipping it around and because there's that gray area and because Robert Muller simply will not go quite as far as would be convenient for Democrats to go that is at this point preventing them from making that case more publicly the White House doesn't know where this is going back to from this thing to that thing no we mean this no we're having that I mean now the strategy Israel robert muller has to has to testify we need him in there we want him in the rudy giuliani analogy that this would be you know he would be eviscerated worse than michael cohen well Michael Cohen was something that the president his testimony was obsessed with and was unhappy about and it didn't really work right this week and so there just seemed to be it's like the spaghetti on the wall like what sticks they're totally reactive they're not in control they're trying to figure it out they don't know and you know we may have a better sense of where it's going next week when the house is back and there's more of everybody's in the same space and you can kind of see the speaker try to figure it out and where and how far she's going to be pulled towards impeachment or whether they're gonna try to subpoena mall or her who knows but the White House doesn't know and they don't ever know they don't never know what spilled bar doing that I'll tell you from Informer Republican circles both from people who knew him during his CIA days people who knew him and his first tour of duty as Attorney General and people who knew him in private practice some of them not all of them find this version of Bill Barr unrecognizable yeah you talk to people and you hear that and then you talk to other people and you say well this is kind of some of what he's saying is what you would expect because of his his the idea that he has about president executive power and how much he believes in that and he's believed in that for a long time and he thinks that that's something that should be preserved and you wanted to step in and you know he saw it being eroded and feels this duty what I find interesting about when you look at what bar says in his interview and then you look at what the Giuliani and the others are saying they're basically saying some of the same things there and it's all the undercurrent of it all is to discredit Muller and and bars just saying it and the things that he's saying are much more they're just softer and he's you know he's a figure who doesn't he's not bombastic he's kind of you know barely gesturing while he's speaking far yeah exactly and so you're sort of it's a little bit you're like oh yeah listening but it's but he's his message is very similar to these other people around Trump who are saying very directly I mean Barr says in his interview that there's evidence to make that make some believe senior government officials improperly surveil the Trump campaign well the people around the president say the same thing they just say it differently if he did it they were spying they were do and he actually used the word spying you know and then when you look at what he has said about Muller you know oh I thought he was gonna give me a report that I could just hand out I had to write that summary everyone was clear media were camped out you know that's just saying like how did they not first of all how do they not figure that out or they on the same page before that happened but it's just this whole undercurrent of trying to discredit Muller and he's doing in a very subdued way and other people around the president are doing it in a very aggressive overt way Joyce I would I would just add that bars doing it in a soft voice but an extremely extremely aggressive way and Bart the thing about bar to track is that their story is changing the first read from senior Justice Department officials close to the investigation when Muller finished was that there were no disagreements about the law or the evidence bar has totally changed his message to CBS interview he he questioned the legal analysis any had a different take or different words on the evidence and this is this is this is Clintonian parsing the likes of which we really haven't seen since that era I think that's absolutely right bar seems to almost be taking a leaf from Trump's book and saying what he needs to say to get through this particular day without worrying about whether it's consistent with what he said in the past this is such a level of disingenuous conduct from the person who sits on the fifth floor in the Justice Department is and is supposed to be our top federal law enforcement officer and you know it's I think one of the difficult things here is that bar on the one hand says well I just couldn't withstand the pressure of depressed during those two days after I had the report and Muller didn't give me what I thought he was going to give me so I had to rush something out couldn't withstand that pressure from the press but at the same time he had no trouble with standing the pressure of a duly issued subpoena asking him to testify in front of Congress this is just new levels of dishonest behavior hey there I'm Chris Hayes from MSNBC thanks for watching MSNBC on youtube if you want to keep up to date with the videos we're putting out you can click subscribe just below me or click over on this list to see lots of other great videos

Christopher Hitchens on the Future of British Politics, Labour and Conservative Parties (2007)

he also talks about how key foreign policy issues will be impacted by his possible successors hosted by the Hudson Institute this is an hour and a half good afternoon ladies and gentlemen and I also welcome people watching c-span my name is John O'Sullivan I'm a senior fellow here at the Hudson Institute and director of the Center for European studies here also it's a great pleasure to welcome you here to a discussion of British politics have provoked by a book by our first speaker Jeffrey Croft yo blur which you may remember is a remark that was addressed by the presidents the United States to the British prime minister as a g8 meeting earlier this year now this remark may not have rung around the United States but it caused an enormous amount of I suppose anger and resentment in England where it was interpreted I think not necessarily accurately as somehow condescending to to mr. Blair but of course the reason why it produced such an impact was because there was already a great deal of concern in England about two things one is the situation in Iraq and building on that the whether or not the special relationship between the United States and Great Britain was working to Britain's interests and that was also particularly associated with the Prime Minister Tony Blair because he was seen as having a relationship with Washington in which and if this is the majority view I think in England in which he was in adopting two subservient to Rome I think that's an interpretation that wouldn't be accepted by everyone on this side of the Atlantic or perhaps on the other including perhaps some of our speakers today well I'm going to invite the first speaker jeff wheatcraft the author of yo Blair and the author also of a min fascinating book on the decline of the British Conservative Party called the strange death of Tory England to begin the today's proceedings after mr. wee Croft who is a distinguished independent journalist and is the author of sand historian and the author of such books as the ran Lords I'm going to invite him to address us on this question then I'll invite Christopher Hitchens and Tim Montgomery to respond before I'll just briefly introduce them now Christopher Hitchens as they say needs no introduction he's well known to Americans and indeed to Brits the author of a number of books of essays of of literary essays of political essays and as someone who in recent years has moved to some degree across the political spectrum exactly from where to where he went perhaps explained today but he has taken the strong defense of the Iraq war at a time when many other people were moving in the opposite direction Tim Montgomery is a former aide senior aide to the former head of the Conservative Party Ian Duncan Smith and he's also and perhaps this will turn out to be a more significant role the founder and editor of what is the major political blog on the right in Britain w-w-w conservative home comm so both of them approach these questions from positions of both commitment and independence and I look forward therefore to the debate that should follow could I begin by asking Jeffrey Croft to address us and good day ladies and gentlemen very good to be here and to see you the title of my book John has just explained I had been thinking for some time past of writing a short of vigorous polemic about mr. blarin in particular his foreign policy and it might have had various titles it was what not inspired by but there are echoes of a famous book published in 1940 by Michael foot and two others called guilty men which was an attack on the Chamberlain government before the war and a guilty man might have done as my title if it hadn't been for the wonderful title which President Bush presented me with absent Petersburg last summer and although I have been told that the phrase is not quite as condescending as some of us in England who thought it was the full transcript of their conversation which we subsequently read was a hair-raising in the way that it showed Tony Blair really bowing and scraping to President Bush saying I I can just go out to the Middle East and talk and I will do exactly your bidding it did seem to come firm the worst suspicions of most people and it was a mystery magic moment last summer in anglo-american relations as well as an International Affairs because the the crisis then exploded in Israel and Lebanon and the Israeli bombardment of Lebanon followed which was if you want a contrast statistically between the two countries House representatives passed a resolution of unconditional support for Israel by 410 votes to eight at a time when almost to the day an opinion poll showed that only 22 percent of British people thought that the Israeli response was proportional or justified I would add I'll just say for one for once here that although my book is thoroughly polemical in tone what I'm saying here today is with I hope a degree of a historical detachment and I'm not speaking simply as a polemicist as it were therefore whether the Israelis were right or wrong in the response the objective fact as well was that most British people did not support it nor did most members of mr. Blair's parliamentary Labour Party or indeed most members of his cabinet but he himself did and this has been his policy throughout I think it can be shown that his support for President Bush in the Iraq war stemmed they no doubt mr. Blair thought that Saddam was a dangerous tyrant as who didn't but I think it can be shown that it's stemmed from his commitment to supporting the American and his administration of the day in which ever decision it took the the most lethal criticism of Blair over Iraq was made by Robin Cook who had been in mr. Blair's first foreign secretary and was then kicked sideways or downwards and he resigned he was then an important member of the government to resign over the Iraq war in March 2003 and in his resignation speech in the House of Commons he said that the invasion of Iraq would not be taking place if Al Gore were in the White House now that I think first of all is obviously true 400 as a latter-day critic of the war discovered an eloquence and passion that are quite eluded him when he was running for president and what that means is that although the Bush administration could still say yes and thank heaven it means among other things by the way that if you want to ask the question who took the ultimate decision to invade Iraq you could say the Supreme Court but while the Bush White House could say yes thank Heaven we had a president decisive enough and brave enough to invade Iran Blair can't very well say that he's in the absurd position of saying my policy is to support the American administration of the day I wholeheartedly supported the decision of President George Bush to invade Iraq just as I would have wholly supported the decision of President Al Gore not to invade Iraq he himself is a great believer in the special relationship and that is my theme here the the I believe again if one looks hard through the eyes of history this very phrase is dubious to the point of almost absurdity it was perhaps a special relationship special chiefly in the only one side knew it existed and relationships don't come more special than that the English loyalty the British loyalty to the United States has never been reciprocated and again I emphasize that there is nothing wrong with that on the American side necessarily when the accusation has made sometimes of anti-americanism by critics of Blair's relationship in particular with President Bush my answer to that is the United States is a sovereign country that's the point of the fourth of July it has its own interests and objectives which it is entitled to pursue or as interests as it perceives them at any rate and which it does pursue often with a disregard for the interests of its supposed friends let alone its declared enemies and this has been exceptionally clear during the period of mr. Blair's prime ministership and and above all in the last six years and the harder one looks at it the more it seems to me that the so-called special relationship has met its nemesis in this the events of these few years to justify it at all you requires to begin with a rewriting of history or miss reading of history Sir Christopher Mayer who was the British ambassador in Washington and then raised a rather gossipy book about his time here in Washington said that when he was ambassador he forbad any members of the Embassy's staff ever to use the expression special relationship he also said something else he said that based on his experience as British ambassador in Washington he came to realize that the White House took seriously the views of the governments of exactly three countries Israel Ireland and Saudi Arabia and there is one country missing from that list of what happens to him a British citizen and he also observed what perhaps I observed that you very about the special relationship there was a most comical exception to that last Norton when Senator John McCain was in England he came to speak at the conservative conference and he then gave a long interview to the spectator which is very much an organ nowadays it wasn't when I worked for 30 years ago of Anglo neoconservatism under the anglo-american alliance and I suppose Senator McCain was being polite and seen for his supper because he did say how much he believed in the special relationship and he said that I think the special relationship will last throughout the 21st century after all it has already endured for 200 years at which I said hello 200 years back takes us to the early years of the 19th century or let us say to 1812 whoa what was special about the relationship between the two countries that year was that they were at war I imagine that Senator McCain has visited the White House and he really want to know why it's that color I mean some of us take modest patriotic pride remembering that the presidential mansion had to be repainted after our brave lads had burned it and I dare say that Senator McCain knows the words of the star-spangled banner' as well and you should remember that it was a British Rockets red glare and the two countries were just as often on very hostile terms throughout the 19th century as they were on friendly terms they did have become allies objectively and more than perhaps just objectively in the two world wars all that remember that the United States only entered the first world war belatedly and only took in a part in series fighting in 1918 and likewise the United States after an inter war period when the countries were not allies at war and the United States Army was still making plans hypothetically to invade Canada the two countries became allies after Hitler declared war on the United States rather than the other way around Beatriz it's an example of mr. Blair's waywardness with history to say the least that he could say he after the September 11 attacks he expressed the wholehearted support of the British government of people for America and quite right too but he went on to say to a grieving New York that and my father's generation lived through the Blitz and there was only one country which stood shoulder to shoulder with us at that time and that was America well I'm sorry the Blitz was the bombing of London and other British cities in the autumn and winter of 1942 41 when many other countries were in fact were fighting on our side and the United States was neutral and it shows up the absurdity of this this version of history in which the two countries have always been intimate friends and the Unites States ofle began life in rebellion against Great Britain and has been said by some historians that even in 1914 sorry just to go back a moment more Americans would have wanted to join the war at that time on the German side than the British side we were allies to be sure in NATO for 40 years well in NATO has lasted longer than 40 years for reasons that escaped some of us because it was an immensely brilliantly successful defensive alliance which achieved its objective with total success when was Western Europe protected but in the end the Soviet Union imploded and I have sometimes wonder why NATO wasn't wound up at that point but and this is the thing which defenders of the so-called special relationship and over the present Alliance seem to forget during the period from 1949 when NATO was founded until 1989 when Russia began to collapse the two countries were bound in this intimate mutual defense pact for the defense of and if you read by the way the the the the the founding texts of NATO you may wonder why how he can possibly justify NATO troops being in Afghanistan said today because it says the North Atlantic area anyway during that period the two countries were intimate allies in NATO but they were very far from supporting each other's every endeavor outside the NATO area in 1956 the Americans conspicuously did not support the British and the French and the Suez Enterprise and I would say they were right and that Eisenhower's criticisms of Eden and his reproach history and Sir Anthony Eden read with not just great cogency but terrifying topicality today when he said that if you invade an Arab country you will arouse animosity not only in the Arab world but throughout the whole of Asia or in Africa that will endure for generations ten years later the British did not support the American war in Vietnam that has said Harold Wilson the Prime Minister expressed sympathy with the Americans but he did not commit troops and do remember that was exactly what the Americans wanted that was what President Johnson wanted very much very comfortably with Iraq because if you remember mr. Rumsfeld said as the invasion was beginning the British troops worked was his usual lack of tact he said that British troop troops weren't really needed not for military reasons as it turns out he was wrong about that because very many more troops were needed then he had recognized at that point but they were there for political reasons to show that there was the famous Coalition of the Willing well in the nineteen sixties the Americans wanted in just the same way other countries to fight in a Coalition of the Willing as it might have been called in Vietnam and when one English visitor in Washington at the end of that decade was talking to Dean Rusk would mean Secretary of State Rusk said to him all we wanted was one goddamn battalion of the Black Watch and they didn't get them although the Black Watch have been fighting as you will know in Basra the final legacy of mr. Blair's prime ministership and of his foreign policy has been to demonstrate the hollowness of this relationship there is again I hope I can be acquitted of anti-americanism whatever it means in this context when I say that any American administration thinks of American interests first but this has been shown quite dramatic degree by the Bush administration it has been said that the Bush administration's watchword when dealing with its enemies is odorant unmet giant and let them hate just so long as they fear us but it's it's its precept when dealing with its supposed friends sometimes seems to be taken from Prince Watson Berg in 18-49 when he said they will be astonished by our ingratitude when mr. Blair reacted as I have said in my view absolutely rightly after 9/11 by surprise expressing total support for the United States his immediate reward was a tariff likely to destroy what is left to the British steel industry the Bush administration does not appear to believe in gratitude and in that respect and we come which is where I'll leave it for the moment to the single most fascinating an ominous moment of mr. Blair's Prime Minister in terms of foreign politics which was April 2004 when he came to Washington and when British troops were fighting in Iraq and when the war had already become grievously unpopular in England and when mr. Blair's Austin's or reasons for the war in the first place have been shown to be untrue and if you remember he was preceded to Washington by mr. Sharon the Israeli prime minister and Sharon and Borgia cut a deal again I expressed no views on this of my own as to whether it was right or wrong but cutting deals is what politicians do both of them had something they wanted Bush by by demonstrating his support for Israel wanted to carry Florida in the coming presidential election without resorting to quite the Barak means of the previous election and mr. Sharon wanted something else he had decided finally he who not long before had said that Israel would forever remain in Gaza for Zionist reasons had finally realized like most Israelis and got there quicker than him that the game wasn't worth the candle and that Israel was get out of Gaza and it was absurd to devote half their military resources to Gaza but he had to sweeten the pill for his more intransigent followers and what he wanted and what he got from President Bush was a public statement that with any eventual settlement and presumably a Palestinian state there will be no return to the 1967 borders and there would be no right of return as it's called for the Palestinian refugees from before them now as I say yet again the rights and wrongs of this and neither here nor there this was a total repudiation of existing British policy which were held not that which didn't take a particular side on either of those questions the border or the right of return but insisted that there has been no anticipation of such issues until there was indeed a final settlement it was also I think a repudiation of existing American policy but that's another matter and Blair turned up in Washington to be presented by this with this as a fait accompli and all he could do was say he saw hope for the future in it but it was as even I may say his most voted supporters in London admitted at that time a total national and personal humiliation and it was then that great posse of former ambassadors wrote an unprecedented letter criticizing mr. Blair of British ambassador's and which was then as it were seconded by Sir Roderick Raceway to former ambassador Moscow last summer when he read an article the like of which I'd never seen by a former ambassador saying that Blair had simply failed to represent the interests of his own country and the it is very hard I think for an objective observer of this story to sit to say that Braithwaite was wrong Blair there's policy which may possibly in some ways have been sincere by his own lights to begin with has ended up by presenting the country which is prime minister to the world as a kind of satellite or puppet state and in my view that is not good for his country of which I am a citizen or for yours for those of you who are American and I think that the special relationship as it has been called has now run its course and that under the next prime minister or the one after that presumed to Gordon Brown and possibly then David Cameron there will be a considerable realignment of British policy won't be done in an aggressive way I've I hide the man after all Gordon Brown was here there near the other day and met President Bush of the first time and David Cameron makes the right noises about friendship with America but Cameron began last autumn and a very interesting important speech to detach himself from an uncritical support for American policy and I think you can be fairly sure that is what is going to happen over the next few years thank you I'm now going to invite Christopher Hitchens and after him Tim Montgomery to respond then I'm after they each both have spoken I will turn back to Geoffrey and ask him perhaps to discuss some aspects also the of the domestic changes that may occur as a result of the change of a prime minister and then I'll throw it open to the floor and Christopher sir ladies gentlemen comrades brothers and sisters c-span viewers wish I'd brought my own book to way if I didn't think of it not a John rather sadly strangely neglected book on the special relationship called a blood class and Empire now available in paperback and at fine bookstores everywhere which argues against the view very more more much more recently and with much more publicity and panache taken by Andrew Roberts who has a rather proprietorial attitude towards anglo-american relations and thinks that they belong in some mystical way to the anglo-saxon right-wing in some deeply layered manner it's a common almost ethnic and literary inheritance of a conservative kind argues my book argues that actually the the two great paradoxes about the special relationship one is that it's historically been something that's flourished mainly on the left of center I could take a long time justifying this but I'll I'll condense as much as I can but it'll I think throw some of Geoffrey's remarks into some relief one of the oldest traditions of the English radical left is an affection for the United States for the American Revolution for America as the land of equality not just of opportunity but of the franchise of the opening of land to the landless of the refugee of the persecuted and the immigrants the the reactionaries of the 19th century spent an enormous time charles dickens american notes would be the the salient case here trying to discredit the american revolution and it's British sympathizers the locust classic us of my case would be something they don't teach you in school I suppose the the great campaign by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels to defend the American Union against secession and slavery in the eighteen sixties at a time when everyone from the liberal hypocrite William Gladstone to the London Times to the government of the day to the cotton and other interests favored the Confederacy and hope to build it a navy in the city of Liverpool if you read the education of Henry Adams think you'll have to agree still the classic American memoir and autobiography you will find that when he was attached to his father's unhappy ministry in London at that period he found that his only friends were the Friends of Karl Marx and the only friends of the American Union were the English working men's associations this is a tradition that hasn't been completely buried yet and I think stands in need of some resuscitation so I'd stipulate that to begin with but there's another paradoxes you might say goes the other way the reason why you need a special relationship to start off with is the need of the British Empire to dis burden itself of colonies that it could no longer afford to pay for or governed or defend the entire rise to power as an empire the United States not the entire because well that would mean exempting the war against the Spanish Empire but the the greater part of the American rise to an unchallenged world dominance is the direct succession that is involved between British governments confessedly saying to Washington that they can no longer stand the strain and that because of other engagements in Europe usually with Germany they require American help and the price for this will be the transfer of some colonies perhaps a gold standard or two here and there and some other responsibilities if you look at where American troops are currently deployed in the world and where they've been deployed for a great deal of time or where they're engaged in the difficulties that some of which Geoffrey mentions you will find whether it's Palestine Israel whether it's the Durand Line in Afghanistan Pakistan whether it's the borders of Iraq or in innumerable other places I could cite and you could add these are lines drawn by retreating having the long withdrawing roar if you like of British colonialism for the Americans to have picked up this responsibility so what should we say perhaps incautiously and some respects uncomplainingly is to give you an idea of how the inequality sometimes goes if you like the other way Churchill and Roosevelt as you will know they're they're often thought it was the heavenly twins in the special relationship nobody who's read William Roger Lewis's edition of their complete correspondence can fail to notice mr. Churchill hated mr. Roosevelt mr. Roosevelt despised had nothing but contempt for mr. Churchill and it was a race ready to see which of these two emotions would get the upper hand mr. Churchill did not like the price that was exacted from him for lend-lease did not like being told that the Congressional isolationists had to be appeased and the British colonies had to be given up for every tranche of aid in the in the miserly way that it was handed out at the time as Geoffrey said when London itself was being bombed and when the American ambassador mr. Joseph Kennedy of ill-repute until Fame and and on the mourned memory was an open sympathizer of the Third Reich faced very hard to picture a less happy moment than that the the relationship between President act by private President Truman and Prime Minister Attlee at the dawn of the Cold War a great deal warmer and more natural between Democrats and Labor Ernest Bevin in fact signed the NATO treaty with a signet ring that had been given to him this was mr. Ali's foreign secretary a signet ring given to him as a young man by Samuel Gompers found with the mo Confederation of labour that's the British snap still on the NATO treaty the the post labor relationship between surrounding Eton and the United States is probably well known and well remembered as the lowest moment there ever was the eviction of Britain France and Israel from Suez by President Eisenhower his willingness not just to tell the Israelis they couldn't sell Israeli bonds in New York anymore if they weren't out of Gaza by the end of the week but he's openly saying to a British prime minister that he would withdraw dollar support for the Sterling pound and willingness to actually do so is the origin of something that is very little understood on this side of the Atlantic the extreme the United States felt by large sections of the British Conservative Party from then on muted for reasons of tact and reasons of diplomacy but very strong and palpable mr. macmillan the successor of that of her practically installed in Downing Street buyers and house pressure had actually a relationship of family with President Kennedy as well as a sort of avuncular relationship that went beyond that but it was a fairly tepid business and fairly short-lived and it founded on the refusal of United States to take seriously Britain's claim to be an independent rather than a subordinate to American nuclear power cantering I'll keep this counter as short as I can but I think it's necessary to set the scene the the Wilson Callaghan labor governments of the 70s 60s were immolated interface I would say immolated morally and politically by their decision that at all costs they had to support the American position in Indochina in return for American support for the Sterling area and the price of a highly overvalued part when the pound collapsed and when the Vietnam enterprise collapsed also you I think a generation of latent or blatant anti Americans had been created all across the British media all across the British a khadeem all across actually the generation born as I was in the early years of the baby boom a catastrophe from which neither country is yet recovered Prime Minister Heath didn't like the Americans particularly didn't like secretary snake hissing or President Nixon believed Britain's jest nearly entirely with Europe mrs. Thatcher was exactly the other way around as you know use the United States to enhance British prestige internationally and as leverage against Europe thus skipping only the contemptible figure of John Major who managed to be despised all across the United States and all across Europe in part because he helped to fail Europe's first post 1989 test the first serious test Europe had to undergo after its reunification after the end of the Cold War you know was it's part of failure to prevent the recrudescence of air fascism in former Yugoslavia Majors case not even not to prevent it but to be seconding it's supporting it endorsing it helping it stepping over that put the palling episode when we come to tony blair we have to we have to acknowledge whatever else we may have to say something very important and unique and unprecedented they had not before been a prime minister of United Kingdom who was neither pro-european nor in the Contra sense pro-american didn't feel he had to choose between the two felt at home with both relationships was as as easy if you like taking a holiday in Tuscany as he would have been playing American songs in that rock band of his or with American culture in general and of the right generation to be doing all these things no more playing off Washington against what Brussels Washington against Paris Washington against but none of that but able to know a crisis when he saw one and of also another achievement to have been a good personal friend in time of trouble of two very radically different presidents mr. Clinton and later mr. Bush and when I say standing by them in time of trouble I make no particular point about whether Prime Minister Blair should have been so fawning on on President Clinton when he was caught lying and perjuring and fornicating in the Oval Office and the Lincoln Bedroom I make I'd rather move directly to September the 11th and the serial consequences all wait and say what I mean by in time of trouble and quote John Howard their prime minister of the of Australia who went accused of being too uncritically probe or enthusiastically pro-american in the same epoch and being apparently willing to go wherever America might lead said in his own mistakable turns well there's not much point in being 60% of a friend at a time like this and I thought a very good and useful remark simple but not completely uncomplicated because 60% friendship is not what anybody needs in a in a time when civil society has been attacked by the most violent and promiscuous form of barbarism to have emerged in this generations lifetime so I'm not a bit surprised and surprised or shocked mere sorry to say Jeffrey in the least that mr. Blair can be overheard speaking soothingly to mr. Bush in st. Petersburg that's sort of part of the prime ministerial job and it's well known that mr. Bush's are slightly prickly an impatient person it's much more interesting what mr. Blair said in public and he's been criticized much more for what he said deliberately on the podium of his party conference which were the following words shortly after September 11th he said addressing our American friends cousins comrades he said we were with you with the first and we will be with you till the last that surely is what friendship and solidarity actually mean so Christopher Mayer in the Jeffrey uses the euphemism gossipy for the tawdry little book that our former envoi here produced on this summit said that when he heard the words he began to feel uneasy because he said words like that have consequences you might be taken up on them well I I ask you ladies and gentlemen what is the point of making a declaration of unconditional brotherhood and solidarity if you're not prepared to be taken up when it was the value of your word what in fact are your values if such is not the case the the main sub r EK or epithet that mr. blair has reaped for this unequivocal position for the friendship is the word poodle there isn't a child in england who doesn't know how to repeat this childish accusation mr. Blair is mr. Bush's poodle they hear it from Charlie adults they pick it up and they they are they giggle over it themselves well let me just remind you of something it was not mr. Clinton all Secretary of State Albright who wanted to finish the job with slobodan milosevic and his mad dream of a greater Serbia and an ethnically cleansed and pulverized Balkans a wave of fascism would have spread into Hungary and Romania and Transylvania and beyond if it hadn't been and perhaps into Greece and Turkish relations if it hadn't been contained it was Prime Minister Blair who urged them to do it and said the British troops will be willing to do it even if American troops were not this is not poodle them this is not around our land Alya this is not poodle them Mr Blair demonstrated the same fortitude in the case of Sierra Leone and went over the objections of almost everybody who thought well why not just leave a treaty torn up with an African country former dependency of ours founded to protect runaway and freed slaves why not them let them be overrun by a Liberian invasion run by a group of hand lopping thugs and irredentist with very strong ties through the Germans and blood John and racket to al-qaeda who cares if we don't stand by the treaty anywhere it's not worth the life of a British grenadiers Mr Blair took review that was not the case and that the cost of no casualties at all turned the invasion back greatly I think to his credit in the case of Afghanistan as we know he also said to the President Bush the British troops who were ready to intervene directly not just by proxy through the Northern Alliance whether American forces were available or not but more important still I think in showing the purity of this poodle charge is the speech he gave in 1999 in Chicago at she was part of a series of speeches after the removal of slobodan milosevic from power Mr Blair repeatedly said at a time when George Bush was a governor of Texas preparing to run as an isolationist against the interventionism of Albert Gore and Bill Clinton against the interventionism that Bush denounced and Cheney denounced in the debate so you're using American troops for nation-building you can't do that you're using them for humanitarian purposes around the world that's not what our 82nd airborne is for you're quite wrong President Clinton and Vice President Gore had repeatedly sworn that there would be another appointment with Saddam Hussein that would have to be kept one time or another but but before that mr. Blair had said we have one dictator down we have another to go there's a nun post burnable confrontation with Saddam Hussein and the only question is going to be does he pick the timing of it or do we and just for once just for once we pick the timing up until then Saddam chose I know when I'll invade Iran I know well invade when I'll invade Kuwait I know when I'll send jet squads to hijack tourists the boats in the Mediterranean I know when I'll give sanctuary to the man who blew up the World Trade Center in 1993 I have the initiative here I can switch allegiance from the pro2 Islamic Jihad and Hamas and pay for the suicide bombings in Palestine to keep the West off birds I call the shots here he decided win that beer crisis now for deciding that for once we would pick the moment we have never heard the end and we never will hear the end from our favorite journalists and clever clogs types never hear the end of a campaign of slander and cynicism and defamation because we produce the necessary evidence because we said this man is a permanent menace with his genocidal politics his weapons of mass destruction his unending support for nihilism and terrorism it's not just we've waited we're doing this too quickly it's we've waited far too long and for this as I say that the campaign of hateful misrepresentation has never and I think never will stop proof positive by the way the history is not always written by the winners the losers have written this and I expect they will carry the day in the history books that's all end with two ironies actually Mr Blair probably spoiled everything for the relationship and for himself by being untrue to the principles I've just described he asked for after the United Nations Security Council had voted unanimously unanimously including the vote of Syria to require on pain of serious consequences that Iraq after decades of defiance come into compliance with the relevant resolutions not just on weaponry but on many other things to a resolution that good legal minds have said and any moral sense would tell you was self-enforcing and long overdue and representing finally the unanimity that any organization of international stature with any vertebra should have had to feel it her to pass Syria not exempt you mr. Blair said let's just try this again let's have another resolution because I need it from my parliamentary Labour Party a rather parochial Djem and mounting if you like to something of a quid pro quo a political favor of a poetry kind and because he's not a poodle and isn't regarded as such by the administration that's another misrepresentation and libel because they take him so seriously because British advice is heated because British prestige does amount to something because the Prime Minister is understood as a serious person he was given what he asked and therefore the whole noble Enterprise of the removal of Saddam Hussein became a matter of nuts and bolts and details and matters of timing exact locations of sources and methods of terror and wng trivializing the whole matter into one of inspections and reducing it to the very banal stage in which the argument is declined today thus Mr Blair undid his cause and himself and his place in history I think not by being too much in line with the policy of the United States correct as it was but by being not so much so insufficiently so closing irony remember what I said about the way the Tories have always hated and resented the loss of their empire and the assumption of those responsibilities that they couldn't discharge any longer and overlook the empty letters sent by the Arabist dinosaurs of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office who have never got anything right and never will and note that Jeffrey said that it was last autumn that the little charmer an impostor and published publicity specialist David Cameron made a measured statement taking his distance from the United States wasn't last autumn ladies and gentlemen he was on the morning of September the 11th that he called his press conference and told the American Embassy that he would not be available for any other events he was going to make his own little declaration of independence as a conservative and to say that from now on on this day of all days the United States could not count on any further British friendship could not count on it as an axiom or could not count on it as a principle it would from now on have to be bargained for who would have to be traded it would have to be quid pro quo well that works for me and it works for my thesis it works for my book because it replaces the virus of anti-americanism where it always was where it ought to be and where it belongs on the forces of reaction and with the rump of the British Tory party whose strange death as adumbrated by Geoffrey cannot come quick enough for me thank you well Tim as a leading member of the Conservative Party those must be fighting words estranged me to come to Washington because I end up seeming always defending tony blair in some way just how am i going to start these remarks tony blair if anyone has devastated my party the conservative party and laterally over the last 10 years or so it has been him he has confounded us at every turn confusing us and defeating us three times to a huge extent so I have no love for the man no that's where I start my position there my response to what's been said so far but erm I can only agree with that with what Christopher Hitchens said about this whole poodle myth it is absolutely ridiculous and there's no evidence for it if you look at the chronology is absolutely true and Christopher said what I really wanted to say about this was that if you want a defining text ready for a lot of what george w bush has done since 9/11 and through what has gone on in afghanistan and iraq you do have to look back to that chicago speech and what tony blair and did was in many ways led and the view that the Bush White House has pursued so it's a very strange of poodle that actually wrote the script for a lot of things that have happened since those since there's times I think the great thing that was missing from Oliver definitely costs remarks was really the the scale of the threat that Western civilization faces at the moment from Islamic fascism I think there are very few people in England who understand threat that we all face Tony Blair is one of them he understood it right away after 9/11 and I think that is what unites him and President Bush it isn't some sort of slavish sense that he has to be loyal to president loyal to America I think he appreciates the great dangers that civilization and faces now I happen to believe that as Tony Blair has incompetently managed most of the UK affairs since it became prime minister in 1997 I think the way the Iraq war has been progressed has been incompetent and a lot of advice that should have been listened to by defense and foreign policy experts wasn't heeded not least warnings two three years ago by senators McCain and Lieberman about the need for many more troops and I make no defence of Tony Blair's competence but I do think the idea his approval the idea that somehow he didn't come to the views that he had independently and first is simply very very bad history and I want to focus I think the subject of the discussion is the future of the relationship between our two countries United States and United Kingdom and then I think my job John is to focus particularly on the conservative parties and place in that future and that's what I intend to do for the rest of my remarks there has been a huge deterioration in the Conservative Party's view of the United States in recent times and them I personally regret that I think a lot of it is to do with I think a fairly great failures in the White House great failures within team Bush to realize that there are disagreements between friends and when those disagreements occur and you work at overcoming them because there are long-term benefits and especially in the special relationship between our two countries and special relationships between parties like the Republicans and the Conservatives that need to stand the test of time and need to be to be worked out but Michael Howard the former Conservative Party leader made some very unfortunate remarks about the Iraq war when in an interview for The Sunday Times he said that if he knew then what he knew now about a little period before the last general election and he would not have voted for the Iraq war it was a foolish thing for Michael Howard to say and the White House took great exception to this there was a lot of telephone traffic between the Conservative Party and the White House and the White House made it very very clear that the Conservative Party leader would no longer be welcome at the the White House and that has been a problem in the relationship ever since there has been there's been no commitment to keep two parties close the parties of Thatcher and Reagan etc that really should be should be closed and standing together on so many important issues back at Michael house right hand at the time he had that White House snub was David Cameron David Cameron was very much Michael Howard's process J and David Cameron remembers that that it's like remembers the great coldness that began between the Conservative Party and the Bush administration and the Conservative Party at that time and this is something I would very much agree with what Jeffrey a week Ross said I think the Bush administration has been very bad at maintaining alliances and the steel tariffs example he cited was an example where there's been no real effort to keep important friends onside and I think that's a too big to be greatly regretted as we look forward and I don't think that the Conservative Party Republican Conservative Party America relationship and so far as a relationship with George W Bush is going to be fixed and I don't think there is any willingness and the team Cameron to want it to be to be fixed there David Cameron if he becomes Prime Minister won't become Prime Minister until George W Bush has left the White House he is not part of the Conservative Party's calculations and there are stories that have recently surfaced in the in the press in Britain of conscious attempts by the Conservative Party leadership to manufacture rouse with the Bush White House the Bush White House is incredibly unpopular in in Great Britain at the moment and the Conservative Party sees tactical advantage in being seen to be at odds with them this is how far the situation has deteriorated I report this with no pride I report it with great disappointment but I report it isn't the situation that is now exists between the Bush administration and the Conservative Party this is that not to say that the Conservative Party however does not want a relationship with America and a positive relationship very recently as has been mentioned we had John Senator John McCain and come and speak to the annual Conservative Party conference and we've just been announced that it later on this year the Governor of California will be addressing and the Conservative Party conference they consider party does want to keep a relationship with the Republicans it wants to keep a relationship open with America but I think it is important for Americans to understand that it is a different Conservative Party and than it has been in the past it is not the party of Margaret Thatcher in so many ways the Conservative Party is becoming much more European much more European in its views for example on Tax Cameron team Cameron have largely accepted and the European levels of Taxation the Gordon Brown has has levied of us and it was notable that whereas nearly all of the Anglosphere nations including tony blair john howard stephen harper george w bush sided with israel during the last summer's conflict in Lebanon and David Cameron was openly critical of Israel like most of the leaders of the EU and the United Nations whereas the war on terror and crucially climate change the Conservative Party much more now resembles something that is Christian Democratic rather than Republican and I think it's notable that probably the policy change that David Cameron is most known for since became leader of the consider party has been his support for Kyoto and I don't think it is any accident that John McCain and the Governor of California or other two people two Republicans he's deemed acceptable to come to Britain and to be that he wants to be associated with him in conclusion I would say that if the Conservative Party is no longer the party of Margaret Margaret Thatcher is a different party that America and the Republican Party now has to deal with I would also say that the Labour Party soon will not be the party of Tony Blair Tony Blair I think has been I think that the the American the Bush administration has put far too many eggs in the Tony Blair basket they have very few other good political friends and relationships and in the UK anybody who wasn't entirely supportive of Blair has been ostracized by them and when Blair goes they will find a Labour Party that is much much more hostile to America it is a guaranteed cheer line on the fringe meeting of the Labour Party conference last year that if you attack neo conservatism which is probably the biggest swear word you could use in in Britain at the moment that you would you would raise the chair so I think it is although I have many disappointments about how the concerted party has behaved in recent times I think that America will find in the medium term that a party which still has people like George Osborne William Hague and Duncan Smith Liam Fox these are Atlantis there are many fewer atlantis cysts in the labour party and in the long run the conservative party different as it is now compared to 10 20 years ago will be a durable and reliable partner for america in the next stages of what I learned today we no longer able to call the war on terror the Labour government has announced today that it's going to learn they will no longer be using that expression as a government and but undoubtedly that is what we're still involved in an age of terror but I think it will be the Conservative Party that in the long term America find a more reliable partner in thank you Tim thank you very much indeed as I said I would like to just turn to Jeffrey for a moment and ask him has he got any particular comment to make on the likely domestic consequences and particularly if the Labour Party Timms last point of the lack of the change of prime ministership that this will take place I suppose in about three months it's not sooner I didn't there will be a drastic change the the domestic politics of Great Britain from which Christopher's no little remote complex at the moment quite comical and in the the whole of Tony Blair's cabinet are contriving to get the impression that to the last man or woman they're all taking part in an Antarctic expedition when the invasion of the rock took place it had absolutely nothing to do with them one or another they have tried to use various ruses and sites of hand to dissociate themselves from it though they can't of course quite do so Road a Gordon Brown is a strong Atlanta system and in the tradition that Christopher mentioned I mean that there was never a stronger Atlanta Syst defense secretary in London than Dennis Healey who was as fierce an anti-communist as a million ex-communists can be and there has indeed been a tradition of labor support for the Atlantic Alliance I just want to take up a couple of points if I may of Christopher's very quickly you mentioned the Civil War and the fact the undoubted fact that English radicals in the 19th century had marred American that English reaction was as you call them tended to ask I mean there was more and more perhaps a snobbery and which persisted indeed in Europe in the 20th century of reactionary and quasi aristocratic contempt for America but don't forget the other way around during the Civil War the Secretary of State wanted to declare war in Great Britain and was only restrained by President Lincoln himself saying I think one more at a time was to Seward and that after the war and Christopher mentioned the warships built in Europe from one in particular the Alabama led to a huge crisis between the two countries and several senators in Washington thought that the only possible adequate restitution for this the building of the Alabama in Birkenhead would be the session of Canada to the United States and Robert Kagan points out in his recent book dangerous nation about America as an international power in the 19th century the first two volumes the second will come up to date but every leading American or very many leading Americans from the beginning believe that the manifest destiny of the United States was to absorb the whole of the North American continent notably Canada the point about I'm sorry I'm not in this these are simply individual points the I'd see one they were Tim's Tim is of course the on the pro-american wing of the Tory Party and there is certainly an anti-american tradition in tourism it is rather died out in the nineteenth between the wars if you could still find it in the old Morning Post which was the high Tory newspaper until it sold in the searches recently with people like Enoch Powell Donald Clark on the somewhat easier sinc ratting right of the party but it is interesting to me that every other European country has a right-wing party or a conservative party whose fundamental definition is its dedication to the national interest of that country and the didn't my country we have a Conservative Party at least one element which seems to be dedicated to the national interest of another country I mean the United States they do not necessarily have the same interest otherwise they were sometimes they do sometimes they don't the the point about Clinton Lucas was um reflections on the president's character is is that a friend of mine who knows Blair quite well does say this is too long a topic to deal with fully but he says that the the most damning thing he regards the wall about as conduct was the adjoint miss was which he switched from Clinton to Bush but your point about the Clinton administration's hostility to Iraq which is a point you continually make was answered by Clinton himself actually when he was in London not long ago he said that indeed it was the policy of an administration to have regime change in Baghdad and also in Havana but he had not for that reason invaded Cuba and I don't always quote Clinton with approval but I think that as a legitimate point um you also mentioned mrs. Thatcher and it is true that she was she formed a very close personal bond with President Reagan and they had a genuine common interest in pursuing the Cold War to its end which they achieved was triumphant success as I have already said mrs. Thatcher was much more detached in some ways from the United States then people realized or than Tony Blair has been and I will give you we were talking about last summer 19 2006 came back 20 years to 1986 mrs. Thatcher visited Washington which she mentions this briefly in her book which one is familiar and she but we know we have a more authentic version from the NSC archives she met George Shultz the Secretary of State at the time and gave him the kind of tongue lashing that Parliament and her cabinet and the British people were very familiar with she said there would be no peace in the Middle East until justice was done for the Palestinians she wanted to know if the Israeli government government regarded the historic land of Israel as its natural territory and she said that the greatest obstacle to progress was the unconditional support given by the United States to the Israeli government in whatever actions it took this is Margaret Thatcher and when that year also the Israelis bombed the PLO at headquarters in Tripoli in contrast to Blair last summer who said who stood by the Americans in the Israelis when the Israeli bombarded southern Lebanon mrs. Thatcher said she would not endorse this Israeli action she said we cannot have countries attacking other countries however vexatious and unpleasant they are against the normal rules of international conduct and she said what would the American response be if I bombed the IRA and dumb dog and that's a very good question perhaps I can I can come in on this point precisely ripped a book about the Thatcher Reagan relationship among other people recently now it seems to me that so thank you very much but it seems to me that the the the the fact of that relationship was this that there were they Reagan and Thatcher representing it seems to me here the national interests of both countries very well saw that they had a common political task to perform essentially in winning the Cold War they had differences of opinion sometimes very serious ones in in the course of that joint campaign the most the one that became public was of course Grenada and Grenada became public partly because mrs. Thatcher who I think was essentially mistaken on this point but not on Grenada as a whole but part because mrs. Thatcher was left out of the loop and publicly humiliated in effect by the Reagan administration at the beginning of that crisis but in general and they muffled the disagreements in pub gave each other strong political support in public having thrashed out their differences in private and that seems to me to point make to lead on to two other points one of them is that why is it that Britain has generally as as Geoffrey where I think rightly said has a political has has a both of state policy and political parties which tend to find themselves more often in alliance with the United States and with some other english-speaking countries whereas the nationalist or conservative parties in Europe tend to be much more attentive to the nano short term interest and I think the answer is a very simple one that in the case of Britain the United States Canada New Zealand Australia but these are all countries shaped fundamentally by the same political values now there are differences in those values I concede but nonetheless when you take when you look at the countries shaped by the English language the common-law tradition of ordered Liberty and so on they will tend to have a return alliance not based on sentiment that I agree is amiss it would be mistaken but on a similarity of outlook in world affairs which leads them therefore to find themselves generally cooperating with each other and that leads me to Christopher's point I must say I was tremendously charmed by his argument that the special relationship his business was safer in the hands of Karl Marx than it was in the hands of Hanuman millon mrs. Thatcher and so on he he drew a particular attention to the he drew a particular attention to the sewers episode and that was and Jeffrey did too that was I think the single most important case of of anglo-american breeder Beach of relations in which they took very opposite sides both Jeffrey and Christopher come together here in taking sides with Eisenhower I'm actually on even side as indeed dollars and Eisenhower subsequently them that became became themselves and you may remember that if Eisenhower felt that invading an Arab country would lead to a generations of hatred throughout the entire world one wonders why he invaded Lebanon the following year which she did and install the government so now the the point the find of the point however of I was making here is that look at the biographies of the Suez group the most intransigent conservatives on the right over sewers John Biggs Davidson Juliana Marie these people were in fact the strongest supporters of America in the seventy in the 60s the 70s and the 80s despite the fact that they believed that the United States had been mistaken and misguided in its Suez policy why for the reason I gave before that they they believed that they were shaped by the a similar outlook on world affairs which led them to see the necessity of American actions on a global scale and not to pursue a parochial a narrow parochial interest at the time which I think they would have been doing had they based their policies or their politics on a policy of resentment about sewers for the next twenty years well I'll move on now to questions from the floor and ask who would like to raise the first one gentleman is Stephen Morris perhaps people could say where relevant where they're from and who they are University size I'd like the panel to consider the following in may we may it be at a great historical moment in that in France we may see the election of the first Atlantis's president in in over fifty years the first solidly Atlantis's president and if that happens you will see in also in Germany with mrs. Merkel the compliment the two major powers of continental Europe in the hands of Pro Atlantic pro-american governments now from the perspective of whoever is in power in Britain assuming that certain we know that French presidencies is going to last seven years I don't know about the Coalition in in Germany but let's assume that there we're going to have several more years of this the two continental powers being pro-american how is it going to create or how is it going to constrain the options of people like the vessels in the Conservative Party you've mentioned who who simply respond to public opinion by creating an international political European political environment which is pro-american and do you think also that the advent of an Atlantis is hardcore in continental Europe with these two is going to affect public opinion not only in Europe but also in Britain you're addressing that to anyone in particular okay thanks Christopher first Jeffrey later well I must say I think it's an admirable question and I wish I'd thought of phrasing it that way myself I mean implicit somewhat in what both of my contraire have been saying is the idea that the friendship with the United States can be considered mainly as a liability these days I really don't think that's true and if the British care to drop what has up till then being given to them naturally so to say he'll come to the naturally they may suddenly find that there are others who are very interested in becoming America's best friend and very eager for what would be for any European country of any economic development and political prestige quite a prize to have to be America's best friend I remember very particularly in 1990 going to Aspen Colorado for a summit meeting between then President Bush the first and mrs. Thatcher where wills great great depression in the British camp diplomatically and politically and in mrs. Thatcher's own entourage the John remembers it there's one of those involved because it looked more and more as if United States preferred her call and the newly powerful and reunited Democratic Germany to the rather Faustian traditions of the special relationship and the first couple of days of the meeting went you know in a very depressing way in just that manner and then we got the news that Saddam was saying Saddam Hussein had gone mad and had decided to abolish the existence of Kuwait overnight to abolish the existence of a member state of the United Nations and the Arab League discovering in the process that it could be a big mistake to invade an Arab country if I might say so also a mistake to invade a Persian country also a mistake to be a fascist megalomaniac and a practitioner of genocide other things that ought to lead to condemnation in isolation that don't often get enough emphasis well at once mrs. Thatcher knew where she stood Britain has bases in the Gulf in Oman for example it has experienced with Kuwait which had probably invented it has friends contracts it has a Navy worth the name and so on she could do things immediately for the president that Helmut Kohl could never think of offering so the moment passed but I never forgot it I mean I'm very amazed at any British Conservative would there yes you're quite right the opportunities there for the taking and I hope I'm sure Mr Sarkozy is going to win and I very much hope that he takes what David Cameron so despises Tim and then Geoffrey if you want to respond yes I agree is a very interesting question that to have I'm sure to replace first by Merkel and Chirac then by Sarkozy I agree it's probably going to happen and I think it's interesting that his he he hides his primary prism on the campaign trail very very carefully he knows it sir it's a vote loser so I wouldn't expect too much in terms of a and assertive or an ambitious and support of the American worldview but yes the hostility will be will be absent that are so characterized president sure acts presidency and the one great worry I have with President Sarkozy is his opposition to Turkey joining the the EU I think the membership of of turkey of EU is an important sign by the Western world the developing world the developed world Europe now if you want to describe it that a country with a huge Muslim population that improves its human rights that democratizes that behaves in a proper constitutional fashion will be welcomed by other other nations of a Western war Christian tradition and I think that will be an enormous tension that he will put at the heart of the West relationship with Islam if he proceeds on that basis and I'm afraid a lot of why he takes that position is I fear for a lot of the anti-islamic sentiment that is now very strong in Europe and if not managed well and presents all sorts of problems in the future Thank You Jeffrey yes the sorry I was all by what Tim was saying that I've gotten rise against said before that the this question of sorry your question I pick up on I think of one I accept the premise by the way first of all the assumption there for the Nicolas Sarkozy is devoted to Atlantis ISM that to borrow from Dorothy Parker the only ISM Nicolas Sarkozy believes in his opportunism and that he has been making one noise one day and another the other day and noon a one day he condemns the black and Arab rioters as well in the english-speaking press it was called force calm it was actually a chi which is rabble and the next day he says that we must understand them and be nice to them do not at all exaggerate any turn I would suggest in European politics in this respect yes Sarkozy and Merkel are conservatives and they don't want to play on the visceral anti-americanism of a certain part of the European left but neither of them supported or would have supported the Iraq war there is scarcely any leader of any important European country who did so or would have done so apart from Blair and Ben and you want should be very careful of thinking that there is I hope that there will be in some respects warmer relations between the European Union and the United States but but they don't count too much on that and there are two things I think I can just knit together yeah going back to something Christopher said much earlier about the way that the Iraq war began Blair's mistake in his view of trying to get second United Nations resolution and and Christopher mentions almost disdainfully the parliamentary Labour Party well I'm sorry this is what's known as democracy I mean Blair took his country into a war against the wishes of most of his own MPs if they had been honest most of his own cabinet if they'd be long history and most of the citizens of that country and it is to use the borough your word iron it is the supreme irony that responsibly to bring democracy to Mesopotamia and the larger Middle East democracy was very badly damaged where it already existed in my country which gave the world parliamentary government in this country which gave the government the world government of the people by the people for the people are the fact that the the Parliament could be manipulated in some ways bamboozled and supporting a war against its real wishes at the contrast indeed to 1940 and 1939 when the a reluctant government British government was pushed into war by parliamentary and public opinion it was completely the other way around in the case of Iraq and the only resemblance to the second resolution is the manipulation was a vote in the House of Commons of course which the Conservative Party in which the Conservative Party supported the casements to their subsequent regret in any other but anyway let's think you had your Georgian Parliament already it was a shock to his own party there's a Rowland dignified way of making war because you you somebody whose position on the war was similar to a Christian was Michael Ignatieff who was one of those and known as liberal Hawks and he wrote a piece in The New York Times about a year after the invasion of Iraq in which he said that he had been dismayed and discomposed by the failure to find so-called mass destruction because he believed the claims made in the first place some of us weren't discomposed or dismayed because we never had belief claims made he then went on to say something which I think Christopher for decoden to put words in your mouth he said in hindsight to be honest the proper case for the war was not for a pre-emptive war to disarm a dangerous tyrant who possessed mass destructive weapons but a preventive war to depose a dangerous I take that point I said that I took the 20 then went on saying glumly unfortunately for my side in the argument if the honest case of prevention rather than pre-emptive would be made the war would have been even more unpopular than it was quite sir I take that one no good back next question let's rest for good to the next question from the front thank you for taking a firm hand on the Scottish parliamentary elections I think our Scottish parliamentary elections coming up if they elect a Scottish Nationalist Party what chance do you see that they will vote to secede it if so what is the impact of British politics in the british-american relationship for anyone on the panel I think we probably begin with Tim and coming this way I think the question ashes will do very well next next month students they will not get a majority all opinion polls suggest that they will be the largest party but they will fall short of the majority and they are of course the Scottish National Party and they believe in independence but they have said that they want actually a referendum on independence for three more years after the Scottish elections because actually a lot of the opinion poll evidence suggests that it actually is one of their least popular policies and some polls have recently put support for independence at 50% but others as low as 30 percent and the view I think is of most commentators bassists the vote s for the SM vote for the SNP is largely a protest against labour and the school bills the iraq war is one of the major reasons why the Scottish Labour Party's fortunes have declined and so much but I think it would be a misreading to believe that they vote Yes and P was a vote for independence I think when the weight of the main unionist party's labour conservative and Liberal Democrats is put behind a no vote should that independence vote happen in three years when Scotland will stay a part of the United Kingdom and Thank You Jeffrey yes I'm surprised and pleased to hear them requests were brought up again we're about to have the most fascinating week in British politics for a long time Tuesday the 1st May as the 300th anniversary of the act of union between England and Scotland Wednesday the second way is the 10th anniversary of Tony Blair's prime ministership and Thursday the 3rd May is the elections in local elections in England in which labor looked like doing very badly and the Scottish elections in which the SNP seemed certain to come the largest party because they have proportional representation there a lot of plurality but not a majority unlike mr. Blair by the way who at the last British general election won 54% of parliamentary seats with just over 35 percent of the popular vote I'm sorry and finally convincing me of the need for some kind of electoral reform I didn't get like there will be an independent Scotland in the foreseeable future but it has shown up the the SNP is position over Scotland is entirely coherent and intellectually honest they want independence labour on the other hand was a belated reluctant and completely insincere convert to devolution and it was nothing more than a political maneuver on the part of labour under Tony Blair as it came about because what label were trying to do was just a circle politically by holding off the electoral challenge from the Scot lands within Scotland while at the same time keeping as many as possible of Labour's Scottish rotten boroughs in the Westminster Parliament without which you cannot good luck now now it may not have been noticed but here that at the last British general election May 2005 the tour is one the largest number of votes in England not the largest on the follow intercedes but they were in the largest number of votes and they will I think without any question I would have a large bet whatever happens in the next general election the Tories will win the largest number of seats in England and then there is going to be a severe constitutional crisis in my view or I didn't know that as I say whether it will mean there will be a new Scotland a new independent Scot although Alex Salmond the leader of the Scottish National Party has said recently rather interestingly that he doesn't want to he wants England to be Scotland's best friend and vice versa he doesn't want to have a separate currency and he doesn't even want to leave the monarchy and this suggests to me the heading towards an earthlike like 1867 and the creation of the austro-hungarian Dual Monarchy that will see if you want to come in Christopher I just say I as to go said about the greatness of Brazil but it's always something in the future and that's where it will remain the independence of Scotland and of Quebec are just exactly like that the people involved don't have the nerve to do it for one thing or the guts and they also know that the consequences will be greater than they are ready to record with first sub secession there are lots of people in Quebec would want to leave in different directions if they had to be governed by the heirs of Peyton and Pooja and the same would be true of Scotland and the other is they would complicate hugely their relations with the European Union which is the only reason they have enough prosperity but getting on with to begin with and this is by no means a certainty it seems to be that an independent Scotland can count on staying within without having to reapply and perhaps have to take another look at itself in the mirror so it's a false issue it just won't happen thank you now this will have to be the final question I'm afraid is that one yes gentlemen the second row I'm standing over with the Cato Institute I like come to pursue this question of friendship I can understand that loyalty is a manifestation of friendship but isn't honest criticism also an act of friendship um just this morning I heard the gentleman a free speech a block away on the war in Iraq reporting on a trip he made there the retired four-star general now at West Point and in his trip report here that was distributed he said that I'm quoting in summary the US Armed Forces are in a position of strategic power unquote I'm sorry sorry what was the word strategic paral paral if somebody tries to warn you against putting your Armed Forces in a position of strategic peril is it that an active friendship also I'm going to ask the three our three speakers to answer the question come starting with Tim and coming this way very quickly as possible if you would I think I I don't agree with this tough criticism of the Iraq war but I do think honest criticism is important i I think there are many cases where this relationship is stronger because of honest criticism I think there is a mischaracterization of what Jeffrey we cross says that somehow Blair's position has been poodle like I don't think he has answered the charge that actually Blair's analysis of the need for a liberal intervention is actually preceded Bush coming to power and I think and there is there are a number of examples of actually Blair having affected u.s. policy by being engaged with them and being critical behind the scenes Christopher I was asked in I think early October 2001 if I'd like to come to the memorial service for the I think it was about 400 British citizens who've been murdered at work in the World Trade Center the few weeks before and I said no I don't want to come to a special service for Brits and I wish you wouldn't have one and I don't think this is an attack on America and I think the president is wrong to describe it as that and I think that Tony Blair is quite right and say that we stand with the immediate victim in this case the United States because we recognize it as an attack on civilization so I don't think that's a distinction without a difference to you so not a matter of loyalty or friendship it's a matter I'd prefer to have solidarity and it means Jeffrey says what's NATO during an Afghanistan well the answer to that is its Charter says if one member is attacked all respond that's why now that seems to me what solidarity means literally and ultimately in this case thank you and Jeffrey yes of course I think that that true friends are candid friends and that you are the best since I think that the Iraq war was a mistake neither of the my friends on my left agree with that one deep drone but I'm for once I'm not in a minority except on this platform because the view that there are core was a mistake is not shared by the great majority of Americans and of British people and I think that tended Americans who continued to admire Tony Blair as quite a lot do might bear in mind that he was pretty well the only person on earth who might have been able to stop the Iraq war if you think that the Iraq war has been a brilliant achievement then you should certainly a salute mr. Blair if not then not and as my closing remark because this has been cited so often by Christopher and Tim and others let us say the 1999 Chicago speech which Tony Blair gave them the central text of liberal interventionism and it was a very good speech indeed in many ways not surprisingly and since it wasn't written by Mr Blair the crucial point of that speech it was written by Lawrence Freedman which then he said this these are the words we must examine the conditions before we take military action first are we sure of our case second have we exhaust exhausted all diplomatic options third on the basis of a practical assessment of the situation are the military operations we can it's a billion prudently undertake forth are we prepared for the long term in the past we have talked too much of exit strategies and finally do we have national interests involved that is very well put and eight years later I would say were all of those conditions met in the case of Iraq or indeed was any ladies and gentlemen I want to draw this debate to a close I think if we're honest and I suspect you will share this feeling there have been times during the debate when we would have been rather depressed but the fact is it was a very honest reflection of some of the debates and discussions and trends that are currently taking place within Britain and in British politics and Americans should know that this is the case secondly I I personally and this may not be universal felt at times that resentments were playing too large a part in our discussion of attitudes across the Atlantic in both directions principally the British towards the American of course there were have been times in the last 200 years Jeffrey mentioned the war of 1812 when the two countries were injuring each other and and they are not going to be forgotten nor by historians should they be forgotten but nor should they necessarily dictate future attitudes and future policies and there is a temptation always that this should be the case I think it's been a temptation that since the settling of the Venezuelan crisis by determined British appeasement by Lord Salisbury in 1895 has been resisted the the British have gained a great deal from deciding not to pursue their interests their national interest to the against the United States in that particular conflict and for the next hundred years there has been a close relationship between the two countries that relationship has been best it seems to me on real long preface of both at the moment that is not how it is seen in Britain it's fair to say and I think Geoffrey is giving us an accurate depiction of British opinion here but then I remember a very important point made by Christopher in the course of the debate he described the situation very accurately we miss mrs. Hatcher and Downing's people in Downing Street felt that the Americans were in a sense rejecting the special relationship in favour of a new special relationship with Germany after Reagan the left office and I think partly to distinguish the Bush administration from the Reagan administration and it's in its relationship with mrs. Thatcher but of course Kuwait came along and all of a sudden it was more convenient and a better expression of American interests to return to the special relationship now at that time mrs. Thatcher did not follow a policy dictated by resentment at the the fourth of treatment she had been receiving for the previous year she saw an opportunity to advance British interests and also to repair an alliance which had never really been shaken or shattered but merely damaged at their margins and as a result of that a very successful policy was carried out I think that overall we have to say that the relationship that was in the sense begun in 1895 solidified in 1941 and triumphed triumphant in 1989 1991 is one which you can never count out and at the moment although at the moment it is unfashionable British politics the long-term national trends in both countries will I think make it live again I realize I'm giving their tutorial opinion here and not expressing my thanks to the board but I know I ask you all to thank them for a lively and vigorous debate thank you very much