An Apology 1434


I am so committed to getting my book finished I really don’t have time or energy to blog at the moment, and realise it has been very desultory the last few weeks. I am well and happy, it is just that writing a properly researched history is incredibly intensive. I realise there is much of great interest happening in the world, but I must sometimes cut myself off from it.

This is why I don’t ask for donations for the blog…


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1,434 thoughts on “An Apology

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  • Ba'al Zevul

    The Tony Blair World Government In Waiting needs a Chief Economist. (Note, anyone thinking outside the globalist box need not apply)

    http://jobs.economist.com/job/16276/chief-economist-/

    Still plugging the discredited Third Way, and an hallucinatory vision involving the pretence of a belief that ‘men reach for concord/With their clenched or grasping fists’* the purpose of the successful applicant will be to implement our focus…on tackling the big challenges which hold such a vision of globalisation back:

    We at Ba’al Laboratories have an interest in optics. The technical meaning of ‘focus’ has nothing to do with big challenges, although it might be a useful analogy for concentrating on small and tightly defined areas of these.

    The ‘pillar’ (Blairese for corporate subdivision) to which the applicant will be chained purports to be interested in
    (1) good governance, as exemplified by that of Romania, say, after the insertion of Blair Inc ™ advisors. And how about Blair-advised Egypt?
    (2) opposing extremism (except extreme market forces)
    (3) reducing conflict (like the Afghan and Iraq wars, ceaseless advocacy of scaling up the horror in Syria, dogwhistle messages about Iran)
    (4) Homogenising Western politics, eg as when the UK gave away £7 Bn in rebates to the EU for no tangible return. Under…?

    Notable in the TBI’s current PR is the emphasis on the evils of populism, as opposed to globalism, which is somewhat ironic, since Tony’s first, dramatic, election victory was very much a populist affair. The people were pissed off with the status quo, and said so.
    Tony’s the status quo now, the state of the country is far worse, and the people are again pissed off with the status quo.

    If as we imagine, Tony spends long hours admiring himself in the mirror, it is the more surprising that he has no self-awareness whatever..

    *William Plomer

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Mystic Ba’al registers another success. Remember this?

    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2015/02/an-apology/comment-page-38/#comment-665188

    The Asshole of Tony Blair, aka Jim Murphy, greases the skids for energy companies and miners, as foreshadowed by the Visit of Tony Blair (and Naguib Sawiris) to Banjul earlier this year.

    http://www.voiceofafrica.tv/en/gambia-president-barrow-receives-courtesy-call-from-tony-blair-institute-for-global-change-d2766

    Murphy, who has also been spotted in Kenya, is expected to drop in on other locations on Blair’s February itinerary too.

    The modus operandi hasn’t changed.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Tony Blair has never been shy of claiming the credit for the Northern Ireland agreement, although the initiative was Major’s, and Blair’s personal involvement was sporadic – Mo Mowlem having been written out of the history books altogether to make room for Tony. But it now seems that Blair was responsible for Paisley’s decision to deal directly with Sinn Fein, rather than through Tony, whose veracity, then as now, was in considerable doubt:

    http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/tony-blair-deceived-sinn-fein-on-irish-language-at-st-andrews-says-exdup-chief-robinson-35872919.html

    Bizarrely, the credit is partially deserved. If he hadn’t been such a dangerous liar as to catalyse direct talks between the other parties, agreement might not have been reached.

    Sadly, the same approach hasn’t worked in the Middle East. The DUP had moral scruples. Israel doesn’t.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Looks like Blair’s about to ride into battle again. Rebuilding The Centre, between unbridled market forces and, er, unbridled market forces, but delicately stepping away from the convergence of right and left populism which isn’t, oh, it SOOO isn’t,The Centre. He’s hiring a managing editor/PR wonk to hit the spots a good blairing to a roomful of appreciative CEO’s doesn’t reach.

    Alastair Campbell doesn’t need the money any more, and Osborne’s otherwise editorially engaged, so we must wait to identify the author of the coming deluge of Third Way porn in the Guardian and on soshul meeja. But the light requirement for a two-page CV plus 300-word statement strongly suggests that the winning candidate is already known to Blair, Inc ™. Probably from the incredibly long list of former Blair advisors now following the global dream, and dollar.

    https://www.journalism.co.uk/media-jobs/managing-editor/s75/a706099/

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Amazingly, even Tony Himself is giving a fair impression of one who, aware of his toxicity, is staying well away from the Press at the moment. But Mrs. B continues visibly to suck at the teat of (‘global’) human-rights deniers…

    https://jagadees.wordpress.com/2017/07/03/how-tony-blairs-wife-earns-1000-an-hour-from-the-kazakh-taxpayer/

    Leaving aside the question of Omnia’s expertise in bilateral foreign investment treaties, we observe that the Blairs are never too far away from a lucrative position wrt someone’s natural resources being extracted by someone else’s mining companies.

    And everyone likes lithium batteries –

    http://www.kazpravda.kz/en/news/economics/nazarbayev-suggested-businessmen-to-invest-in-lithium-mining-in-kazakhstan/

    • Ba'al Zevul

      We personally imagine that the outcome of the review will be inconclusive. Aggression may be a crime under international law, but there exists no international body capable of prosecuting it retrospectively. The ICC has only this year claimed jurisdiction over it, and only for instances committed from this year onwards.

      https://www.opendemocracy.net/north-africa-west-asia/laur-ne-veale/icc-s-new-crime-powerful-states-fear-not

      Fear not, truly.

      Far better to examine Blair’s income stream, and the extent to which he has compromised the interests of the country whose most privileged and sensitive position he occupied for a decade and shamelessly exploited thereafter, in the pursuit of private wealth and influence. We would recommend a quick look at the Bribery Act:

      http://www.transparency.org.uk/our-work/business-integrity/bribery-act/

      And maybe a little digging might reveal breaches of the Official Secrets Act too. Blair’s major selling point has been, post – Westminster, his prior access to privileged, confidential, and yes, downright secret information. JP Morgan didn’t hire him for his ability to wear a sharp suit and blether on about governance. They hired him for his knowledge.

    • Ba'al Zevul

      Chilcot, asked by the BBC… if he felt Mr Blair had given the fullest version of events to the inquiry, Sir John said:

      “I think he gave an – what was – I hesitate to say this, rather, but I think it was, from his perspective and standpoint, emotionally truthful and I think that came out also in his press conference after the launch statement.

      “I think he was under – as you said just now – very great emotional pressure during those sessions … He was suffering. He was deeply engaged. Now in that state of mind and mood you fall back on your instinctive skills and reactions, I think.”

      Astonishingly tactful of Sir John, and should serve as a test piece for anyone practising their bullshit skills. The question was, “Did he give the fullest version of events?” Not “Did he believe the version he delivered?”.

      The mandarin-approved response to this is (1) to tell us how authentic his emotional response was, rather ignoring the distinct overacting Blair, an actor from a family of actors, produced on the occasion: Stock Character #47, Unjustly Accused Hero Hounded By The Public and Not Very Well As A Result. (He recovered miraculously as soon as he left the press conference*)

      Then, (2) as everyone is working out what the hell this has to do with the question, the mandarin slips in the ‘instinctive’ kicker. Blair’s instincts are, as is well-documented throughout his career, to evade, obfuscate and conceal his activities.

      So that’s a very roundabout “no” to the original question. Which Michael Mansfield should have little trouble clarifying, should Chilcot’s opinion be presented during the current enquiry

      *Reminder of the emotional strain Tony was under a month after Chilcot here:
      http://www.lasicilia.it/news/gossip/19512/l-ex-premier-britannico-tony-blair-in-vacanza-alle-isole-eolie.html

  • Ba'al Zevul

    We prefer to believe this is genuine:

    https://www.ft.com/content/4e83a0aa-621f-11e7-91a7-502f7ee26895?mhq5j=e1

    …I love your plans to cut corporation and personal tax and create a more flexible labour market with fewer regulations. I’ve several hedge fund friends who are scoping apartments in Paris and I might even relocate myself (you don’t recognise the ICC, do you?). But remember some of your supporters are less enthusiastic about capitalism, especially the actors.

    (Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2017. We imagine even Sue Grabbitt and Runne will be uninterested in a short extract)

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Wondering what had happened to Tony these last few days, we became somewhat concerned for his safety. But we’d forgotten that early July is Tony’s time for catching up with his freebie donors and for exposing his moobs in exotic locations and close proximity to as many international spivs as possible. Mystic Ba’al tracked him down today – well, last week:

    http://www.lastampa.it/2017/07/05/edizioni/cuneo/tony-blair-visita-il-castello-di-racconigi-prima-delle-nozze-blindate-QCmISPmdIifJLKU6pv4azM/pagina.html

    La Nozze de Carello!…really requires a Mozart to do it justice, perhaps. But this is the sprog of Massimo Carello, who has repeatedly hosted Blair’s hols before. And whose European fervour, as boss of Fiat, goes without saying. As the Independent reminded us in 2006, Dr Carello has expressed forthright views on a number of political issues. In 2002, he was one of seven senior businessman who wrote a public letter warning that Britain faced “slow economic decline” if it did not join the euro.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/a-near-miss-and-an-own-goal-with-friends-like-these-430003.html

    EU can tell a man who EUzes/ By the company he chooses…

    • Ba'al Zevul

      Elaboration of the foregoing:
      The event is described by the Italian press as ‘blindato’, which has nothing to do with blind dates, but means ‘armoured’, and refers to the high level of security surrounding the bash. Which may have accounted for a military aircraft flying random patterns at 3000 feet around the airport in question the day before the wedding. Which in turn may have had something to do with Blair’s justifiable fear of Islamic extremism and/or Old Labour. No pics of the happy couple or the scintillating Sloane guests have surfaced since. Except for Tony, awkwardly posed with the castello’s director, outside. Has Tony been downgraded to ‘help’ status?

      • Ba'al Zevul

        We erred. The Mail’s Femail section photoblitzed the extremely expensive event, though without identifying too many of the guests, possibly due to their affiliations to the alternative economy. Don Corleone, eat your heart out. The Mail made no mention whatever of Tony’s attendance. We will spare you the link.

        • Ba'al Zevul

          Update, the Mail’s Sebastian Shakespeare today added both Blairs and an entirely unwarranted mention of their love of freebies, to his own account of the wedding. It’s almost as if he’d read An Apology…

  • Ba'al Zevul

    We find Tony Blair in Sierra Leone on Sunday –
    http://cocorioko.net/obasanja-and-tony-blair-visit-president-ernest-koroma/

    This may or may not have something to do with our High Commissioner’s assurances, in the same issue, that things will get even better for SL after Brexit, as we will be even more desperately looking for trade. But a courtesy visit from Blair generally indicates that the Great White Grin is looking for personal rather than national advantage. Hide the silver, Koroma !

    Sawiris Air appears to have been otherwise engaged at the time.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Tony’s closeness to Rwanda’s Paul Kagame has been the subject of many of our entries above. And it continues:

    https://careers.institute.global/vacancies/26/strategic-advisor-to-the-rwanda-mines-petroleum-and-gas-board-rmb.html

    The Tony Blair Institute, never let it be forgotten, is a not-for-profit. He’s employing someone to open the Rwandan door to miners out of the goodness of his own heart? With his own cash?

    Kagame is currently in Israel, taking a break from rigging the next elections in his favour.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Yesterday in Lomé…

    http://www.republicoftogo.com/Toutes-les-rubriques/Diplomatie/Nouvelle-visite-de-Tony-Blair-a-Lome

    And it seems we missed one of His manifestations the last time he was in Africa, too.

    Fans of Gnassingbé and lovers of laid-back rock alike will enjoy this, too –

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WMKl16jRHhU

    The job’s been in the Gnassingbé family for 48 years. Faure himself slid into power in 2005. In that election, …Gnassingbé received slightly more than 60% of the votes, according to official results. The RPT refused to allow oversight during the counting of the ballots. The EU and the Carter Center deemed the elections to be fraudulent. Mass protests by the coalition of opposition parties led to the killing of over 1000 citizens by security forces.[10] 40,000 refugees fled to neighboring Benin and Ghana, most of whom have since been repatriated despite concerns.

    (Wikipedia: Faure Gnassingbé)

    Unless he has developed tender feelings for subsistence agriculture,Tony’s interest in countries attractive to miners continues, then:

    http://www.azomining.com/Article.aspx?ArticleID=128

      • Ba'al Zevul

        Pursuant to the foregoing, it is revealed that warm sentiments were exchanged between the governor of Kaduna, one Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai, and The Champion of Transparency…which further suggests that Tony’s looking to be part of the Nigerian power structure again, after Goodluck Jonathan so unkindly refused his offer of armaments, and Buhari declined to commit himself to The Cause. It looks as if this is the ‘stakeholder’ Tony came to see. The extractive indstries are poorly represented in Kaduna Province.

        Rufai’s an ally of Olesegun Obasanjo (apologies for earlier misspelling), Buhari’s deputy, who is openly critical of Buhari when he can get away with it. It has previously been suggested that Obasanjo favours helping Rufai into the presidency, should anything unfortunate happen (for instance) to Buhari. Who runs may read Rufai’s Wiki entry, three quarters of which appears to have been written by himself, and the rest added by someone who knows him rather better. Reproduced here as it will undoubtedly vanish. Rufai in italics: other contributor in bold italics…

        In January 2016, El-Rufai launched the School Feeding Programme, aimed at providing one free meal per day to 1.5 million pupils in public primary schools within the state.[45] He also abolished the collection of fees and levies in public primary and junior secondary schools in Kaduna, thereby removing a financial burden of N3 billion from the parents. the widespread killing in southern kaduna state which is predominantly christians by Fulani herdsmen has led to a nationwide outrage especially among christian leaders who accuse El rufai and the predominantly muslim north of genocide and sponsoring jihad against christian minorities. the silence and inaction of the federal government which is led by President Muhammadu Buhari, another muslim northerner and staunch ally of El rufai has led to widening the division between christians and muslims in the country. [46]

        (Wikipedia: Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai, at date/time of this comment.)

        Rufai has other attributes in common with the Great Privatiser, as well as embracing neoliberal economics:

        http://saharareporters.com/2017/06/20/bazaar-how-el-rufai%E2%80%99s-wife-children-kaduna-state-government-officials-shared-n3billion

        Allegedly, of course. And, sorry to say, normal for Nigeria.

        As to our report of a flight from Kaduna to Lagos, it is entirely possible that Vistajets prefer their aircraft to be securely stabled at a large international airport rather than out in the potentially Islamist sticks, while Tony accepts Rufai’s bread and salt tonight and will be collected tomorrow. More as it reaches us.

        • Ba'al Zevul

          ERRATA.

          (1) The VP of Nigeria is Oluyemi Oluleke “Yemi” Osinbajo, not Olesegun Obasanjo, the country’s former president. We were right first time.

          (2) It would seem that although Rufai was once Obasanjo’s protege, the relationship has soured somewhat lately. Here, Rufai would seem to be an instinctive Blairite…

          http://thenewsnigeria.com.ng/2017/03/obasanjo-el-rufai-has-penchant-for-lying-disloyalty/

          My vivid recollection of him is penchant for lying, for unfair embellishment of stories and his inability to sustain loyalty for long. Two years after I had left office, Osita came to me to confirm how right I was on my assessment and judgement of Nasir (el-Rufai). I knew what I could make him to achieve and he achieved it for my administration and for the country. I believe that he can still be used in public service but under guidance and sufficient oversight, making allowance for the psychology of ‘his petit size and his elephantine brain’. He was described as a malicious liar. He was more than that; he is a pathological purveyor of untruths and half-truths with little or no regard for integrity. In all of this, he unwittingly does more harm than good to himself.

          (3) It was Buhari who declined Blair’s offer of arms. Goodluck Jonathan, his predecessor, welcomed two Blair-brokered contracts with JP Morgan without so much as a token competitive bidding process. As we knew, but had forgotten.

          Apologies, and we will endeavour to improve our fact-checking.

          It is suggested by his opponents that Blair was paid by Rufai for the visit, which is intended to boost the latter’s public credibility in advance of elections in 2019. This (see under Rama, Ponta, Gaddafi etc) would be absolutely credible.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Might have been a refuelling stop at Lagos. Target appears to have taken off again ca 1700 UTC and landed at Luton ~2230. VistaJet, registered 9H-VJM. Very expensive… As suggested before, Tony’s had his ups and downs with Nigeria, and will want to be in with Buhari’s successor. Provincial governors used to be rather beneath his dignity, but this one’s special. No doubt he has the support of the FCO, and indeed anything plugging globalism in Africa…such as Israel.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Well, it was a long time coming, but Mr. Tony has, for the first time since the election, emerged from the shadows of the Brexit argument, to assure the BBC at length that the nice chaps in the EU will, y’know, reform themselves and do something about free movement if we’ll only stop this nonsense about getting out. Not a shred of supporting evidence. Not even a name. And this is the man who gave away our rebate in exchange for…fuck all.
    I decline even to link to this shite. Google it yourselves.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Blair is also reported today as having added his lustre to Ghana’s Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia. Date unknown: some reports say ‘the weekend’: presumably that of the 8th/9th, as his (confirmed) magic carpet returned to the UK last Thursday night, and thereafter flew to Orlando, FL via Paris, France.

    http://www.graphic.com.gh/news/politics/tony-blair-calls-on-bawumia.html

    Bawumia is a considerably more qualified economist – of the Thatcherite monetarist persuasion – than Tony, so perhaps we have it wrong. Perhaps Tony was anxious to be photographed in the company of a superior being. But are any beings superior to Tony? We doubt it. And there are no important elections forthcoming in Ghana for a while, so it seems likely that Bawumi is the chosen agent of globalisation there, and those extractive industries connected to Tony’s connections will also be beneficiaries of the visit.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Returning to Togo – Tony is reportedly to sell his advice on attracting investment* to its hereditary dictator, Faure Gnassingbe – this piece is included for its sinewy and entertaining writing. Google Translate mangles it, so, sorry, you may need to revisit your school French for this one.

    https://togotribune.com/news/tony-blair-en-receleur-au-togo/

    * We must overlook Firerush Ventures (RIP), Tony’s own finance house, which failed utterly to make him a billionaire, and was quietly scrapped during the homogenisation of Blair Inc. ™ And the old familiar question remains. Is Blair wearing his business hat here, or his charidee one?

  • Ba'al Zevul

    The trouble is, if you’re a broadcaster, a repellent interview subject will get just as many viewers as an attractive one, and many, many more than a self-effacing genuine benefactor of mankind. Hence:

    https://www.facebook.com/164665060214766/posts/1840409689306953

    So pushy cow Sophie (Arabella) Ridge (Tiffin School: St Edmund, Oxford – Eng Lit) will be interviewing pushy media whore Tony Blair (Fettes; St. John’s, Oxford – Jurisprudence) on Sunday. Could be a real culture clash.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Cherie relocates –

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4712322/Tony-Cherie-Blair-buy-38-homes-leaving-office.html?ITO=1490&ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490

    Strangely, the report omits the address. So we found it. And while Oldbury Residential (PSC’s Cherie and Euan) is known to have been resident at One Great Cumberland Place, the mortgages are charges on Harcourt Ventures – whose PSC’s are Tony and Cherie. We wondered if Harcourt Ventures had been named for the Nigerian town, but no. Cherie’s global empire will be centred on 30 Harcourt Street, London, W1H 4HU . She’s had it in her sights for a while.

    https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/10680639/charges/-fF7qtRHI4Sg20oGjDVwoiJye0w

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