Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Being So Glad

One of the reasons I was glad that Ed and not David Miliband won the Labour leadership in the aftermath of the 2010 General Election was that I thought that having been Foreign Secretary in the dog days of the last Labour administration would mean that the older Miliband would be unable to rid himself or his party of the stench of their complicity in so many of the horrors of the War on Terror. I was also glad because having been Foreign Secretary in the dog days of the last Labour administration meant being the kind of Blairite shit who, at best, thought that complicity was a price worth paying for, well, what exactly was never quite clear, but it wasn't only an ideological complaint: this was tactics; I could see any criticism of anything particularly vile the Coalition did being countered with reminders of the Labour leader's involvement in extraordinary rendition, of the party being unable to extricate itself from its entanglement in the quasi-imperial projects of the lunatic fringe of the Republican party and so unable to hold the government to task. So this, reminding us that Miliband assured MPs that rendition was not taking place via Diego Garcia when he was Foreign Secretary, is in a certain kind of sense reassuring. On the other hand, it reminds me that my Department is kindly offering a little prestige in their retirement to someone whose career may well end up being defined by their complicity in and lies to Parliament about torture.

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