Sunday, January 14, 2007

Liam Fox is not Winston Churchill

I don't think Guido's idea that Liam Fox should quit and become a wilderness figure in order to return as saviour if Cameron fails is a particularly good one.

a) If the leadership did tell him to stop being silly in arguing for Poland and Hungary to be suspended from NATO for spending too little on defence they are entirely right. Poland has been a good ally contributing to many of our recent foreign interventions and neither country's main contribution to the alliance is their military budget.

b) In terms of his own personal ambition quitting now would suggest serious, party hurting, disloyalty which is usually death to dreams of high office. Churchill was a product of a different era.

c) "As it is they treat him like a mushroom (kept in the dark with plenty of fertiliser), his profile is kept deliberately low." I'm not sure this is true. We've seen big Conservative initiatives on Armed Forces conditions recently which would seem to increase the prominence of the Shadow Defence Minister.

1 comment:

Gracchi said...

Isn't there a sense as well- to paraphrase Lyold Bentsen that we all know of Winston Churchill and Liam Fox ain't no Winston Churchill. Churchill was a former Chancellor, a former Home Secretary, a former Colonial Secretary, First Lord of the Admiralty and President of the Board of Trade. Furthermore it was only through a massive set of accidental circs- the complete failure of appeasement, the failure of Eden as a politician, Halifax turning down the Premiership- that Churchill got back in. And he had the genius to be right on the biggest issue of the twentieth century and was a speaker of brilliance, a omniverous reader and absorber of documents, a man with great political skills- I'm not sure that Liam Fox has any of that.