Former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer has spent the day live-tweeting a remarkable moment by moment account of his experience of 9/11 with George W. Bush:
The potential next leader of the free world… and Rand Paul.
Would we be seeing heads cut off on Iraqi street corners had this man been Commander in Chief?
Robin Williams’ three minute history of Clinton, Dubya, Iraq and Obama was pretty funny (some strong language):
Ed arrived at the White House last night hoping President Obama might take a moment out of dealing with several world crises to help him with his election campaign:
The Labour leader got his 25 minute ‘brush-by’ with the President. This was the least bad photo:
They discussed Ukraine, Gaza, the EU and the economy. Just over six minutes each subject.
What was in Stewart Wood’s bag? Surely not a gift from the Commons shop. Fortunately he just went for some DVDs, including House of Cards. The British version, obviously.
Ed didn’t exactly look comfortable:
Of course, within minutes the internet had delivered its verdict:
Well at least it went better than Gordon, just…
There is no mention of Ed Miliband’s unscheduled ‘brush-by’ with President Obama in Mike Allen’s Playbook, the morning round up of anything going on in Washington that matters to anyone who is anybody in Washington. Sebastian Payne at the Post reports that Ed is scheduled to meet national security adviser Susan Rice this afternoon, officially the White House pointedly says there is “nothing to announce on the president’s schedule”. Presumably at this point Obama will drop in, if he doesn’t have a world war to avoid. Damian McBride, recounting the President’s five snubs of Gordon Brown and subsequent humiliating chat in a kitchen, has his fingers crossed:
“Team Miliband will have left nothing to chance before their man’s meeting at the White House today. For starters, they will have ensured he gets at least as much ceremony and time as David Cameron enjoyed in his first visit to President Bush as leader of the opposition. Aides will have their stopwatches out, ready to squash any suggestion that Mr Miliband was given less time than he was due…
The reality is that every presidential summit, visit, brush-by, drop-in, and walk-and-talk is nowadays so stage-managed that only someone as afflicted by bad luck as Gordon Brown could ever come a cropper. Provided Obama turns up and the White House doesn’t serve bacon sandwiches, today’s meeting will be the diplomatic equivalent of the speaking clock.”
Miliband’s intellectual henchman Stewart Wood was responsible for White House relations under Gordon Brown, surely he will ensure that this time there is no screw up. Interestingly McBride names Dougie Alexander as the source of the leak of the ‘five snubs’ story back in 2009. Which goes some way to explain the enmity between him and Michael Dugher, then Brown’s comms chief…
Official documents recording flights in and out of Diego Garcia, the British Indian Ocean Territory where the United States is accused of carrying out ‘extraordinary rendition’ of terror suspects, have been destroyed by water damage. The Foreign Office says that records from 2002, the year in which former Foreign Secretary David Miliband admitted two US rendition flights landed on the island, are “incomplete”. Answering a written question from Tory MP Andrew Tyrie today, Foreign Office minister Mark Simmonds confirms:
“Records on flight departures and arrivals on Diego Garcia are held by the British Indian Ocean Territory immigration authorities. Daily occurrence logs, which record the flights landing and taking off, cover the period since 2003. Though there are some limited records from 2002, I understand they are incomplete due to water damage.”
Diego Garcia has been dogged by allegations that it is used by the US government as a base to torture terror suspects with impunity. The last Labour government was forced to apologise after admitting rendition flights landed there in 2002, despite previous denials. And now files from that year have been destroyed…
President Obama is in Brussels with Dave to tell us how he thinks the British people should be voting. He says Scots should vote no to freedom and that Britain should stay in the EU, haughtily remarking: “I’m sure the people of Britain will make the right decision”. Unfortunately for the President an ITV/ComRes poll out today shows more Britons want to leave the EU than stay in. 42% would vote to leave if there was a referendum tomorrow and just 40% would vote to stay. Sadly Obama didn’t give us his verdict on whether the people of Newark should go for Robert Jenrick or Roger Helmer today…
Palin’s geo-political grasp is Kissinger-like compared to Obama…[…]
In 2009 Al Gore said the polar ice caps would melt away in five years time. In 2014 the main threat to the polar ice caps appears to be icebreakers rescuing stranded ships. […]