The Obama administration’s plans to strike at Syria lost its most important foreign ally tonight when the British government said it would not take part in any military action against Syria for its suspected use of chemical weapons.
The announcement by British Defense Secretary Philip Hammond came after Prime Minister David Cameron was defeated in the House of Commons when he put it to a vote.
Cameron said it was clear that Parliament did not want to see British military action.
“I get that and the government will act accordingly,” the prime minister said.
Via Hot Air, which also notes that this could very well mean the fall of the Cameron government (it certainly weakened it). The Daily Mail: Continue reading Brits refuse to join @barackobama’s Syrian Adventure.
This is a bit old – the story is from January – but I laughed like a loon at this comment from the Roman Catholic Church about changes in legislation that would allow Catholics to marry the British monarch or his/her heir:
For its part, the Catholic Church said it “would be compassionate” to a Catholic who married a Protestant monarch and could not raise their child in the faith.
Translation: :mildly: we can wait.
This is not actually a request.
During two hours of bitter exchanges during a meeting of all 27 EU leaders before a crisis summit of the eurozone’s 17 members on Wednesday, [French] President [Nicolas] Sarkozy fought hard to get [British Prime Minister David Cameron] barred from talks that would finalise a 100billion euros cash injection into banks.
”We’re sick of you criticising us and telling us what to do. You say you hate the euro, you didn’t want to join and now you want to interfere in our meetings,” the French leader told Mr Cameron, according to diplomats.
Seriously. Now is not a good time.
PS: What’s that? I’m being condescending? Well, guess what: 712 million a year to NATO buys me a little condescension, I think. Besides, England and France should know better.
I’d like to be able to say that it’s nice to see that we’re still providing an example of entrepreneurship in something, except that this isn’t what I had in mind:
LA gangs take over UK streets
BRITAIN is becoming a battleground for the notorious Bloods and Crips gangs that once brought fear to Los Angeles.
Around a QUARTER of mobs in London now align themselves with the two crime networks.
Or, the fundamental gracelessness of the Obama administration.
They updated the original story that Glenn Reynolds linked to, but the raised eyebrow remains:
The Prime Minister’s first official meeting with the new President fell short of the lavish welcomes laid on in recent years.
After intense negotiations with the new administration, Mr Brown got some warm words on the historic links between the U.S. and UK.
Within minutes of landing in a snowbound Washington on Monday night, Mr Brown’s aides had been made aware that their high expectations for the trip were in danger of exceeding the low-key welcome the Obama administration was prepared to offer.
Suggestions that the new President’s crowded diary made it impossible to give more time to Mr Brown rang hollow after it emerged that his other engagements included a routine speech to the Department for Interior and a meeting with the Boy Scouts of America.
Continue reading ‘Perfect acquaintances:’ readjusting the Special Relationship.
Come, I will hide nothing from you: it would be blatantly unfair for me to mock the President for choosing Chicago bundler Louis Susman to be the ambassador to the Court of Saint James. You see, unlike a certain subset of the population I know how the game is actually played; certain ambassadorships are considered prestigious, and some aren’t. The ones that are prestigious – and I don’t think that they get much more prestigious than the one for Great Britain – are going to be filled for political reasons, which means that generally they will not be filled by a professional diplomat. The last four were, in fact: a retired admiral, a senior government official/financial guy; a financial/oil guy; and a senior government official/car dealership owner. An investment banker who raised 500 grand for the President is not particularly surprising, in other words… unless you happened to be one of those people who actually believed that line of Obama’s about how he was going to do things differently. As I didn’t and don’t, I really can’t see how I can go off on this, so I won’t.
Besides, the Brits are already doing it for me. Continue reading Obama to make mega-bundler Louis Susman Ambassador to England?
A bit of an antidote to certain, ah, reflexive ways of thinking:
Bad Times Visit Our Betters in Europe
LONDON — Think that credit collapse that triggered the Bush administration’s $700 billion bank bailout was necessary because of Republican hostility to regulation and the ineptness of President George W. Bush?
If it were that simple, then British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his Labor Party would not be squirming, and the United Kingdom would not be swimming in staggering sums of debt.
Continue reading England’s credit crisis: different players, same result.