Magazine article The Spectator

Letters

Magazine article The Spectator

Letters

Article excerpt

Dare to impeach

From Bruce Shaxson

Sir: It is intolerable that a country so proud of its commitment to open democratic government has had to wait some 30 years after entering the bosom of the EU before a Welsh Nationalist found courage enough, with the support of others, to launch impeachment proceedings against a sitting prime minister. For this Adam Price, MP deserves the deepest gratitude and the wholehearted support of everyone in the country, for he has set the wheels of democratic accountability in motion at long, long last. The truth is that most MPs have failed to represent the people, investigative journalists have missed the boat, and others 'in the know' have been found wanting too.

The first modern prime minister to subvert the democratic process was Edward Heath for misleading the electorate regarding the unacceptable EU terms required of us to join the Common Market. The second was John Major, with similar ambitions, who misled the country with his wildly inaccurate claim of 'Game, Set and Match!' upon returning, in February 1992, from signing the Maastricht Treaty.

So Tony Blair is not the only one seen to engage in numerous falsehoods and misrepresentations to both the people and those in the House.

Bnice Shaxson

Grayshott, Surrey

From Cedric Talbot

Sir: Peter Oborne is being disingenuous about Blair and WMD. Much as I dislike Labour and all their works, I do believe that Blair did what he did in Iraq because he thought it was right, whatever their weaponry might turn out to be.

If he wanted political comfort, he could have joined Chirac and the rest of the donothing brigade and might by now be taking a starring role in one of Michael Moore's cinematic rants. The amazing thing is that Blair the Democrat did exactly what you would expect a Tory prime minister to do. He agreed with Bush the Republican that the world's number one unindicted criminal, Saddam Hussein, should not be allowed to get away with it.

If we have learned anything from all this, it is perhaps the real reason for his continuing voter appeal. Blair has shown himself to be British first and Labour second, a quality which has surely been sorely lacking in some quarters of his Red-Flag-singing party.

Cedric Talbot

Tokyo, Japan

Greek supremacy

From Michael Minas

Sir: I agree entirely (for a change) with everything Taki says about the Athens Olympics (High life, 28 August). Unlike him I had to watch the Games on television. The opening was an event I shall never forget original, imaginative and technically outstanding. And yet the hacks from the British press took no notice of it. What the hacks can't swallow is that their negative press about the Greeks was wrong, and that it so closely followed their disbelief that the Hellenes could bring home the European Cup.

They were desperate for any new material to throw against Greece and so they magnified the case of the two Greek athletes who were disqualified and hoped that something would go desperately wrong before the end of the Games.

What the hacks forget is that when the Greeks' ancestors where practising democracy, theirs were living in caves. And another thing: Greece was occupied by an Islamic regime for 300 years. For that period of time progress in Greece ceased to exist. So imagine where Greece would be now if the occupation hadn't taken place.

Michael Minas

Twickenham, Middlesex

From Paul Banner

Sir: As an Englishman attending the Olympics, I feel I have to comment on what Taki wrote about the six Americans who ruined his viewing of the basketball. Athens can be proud that it hosted a wonderful Games, but there was at least one moment when the Greeks en masse let themselves down. The chanting of 'Hellas, Hellas' may stir the cockles of Taki's heart, but when it was chanted just before the men's 200 metres final, it was incomprehensible and then became distasteful. It was incomprehensible because there were no Greek runners in that final and it became distasteful when the many thousands of Greeks in the stadium started booing the three Americans in that final and succeeded in delaying the start. …

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