An Apology 2169


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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2,169 thoughts on “An Apology

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  • Ba'al Zevul

    IMDB are giving the release date for ‘The Killings* of Tony Blair’ as 10th Mar 2015. From Galloway’s and Ward’s sites it looks as this may be overshot, but we live in hope.

    *sic. Plural. The change is official, and appropriate.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Chinese interview (01/03, 1442, above) took place at last year’s Davos. He hadn’t flown to China. Mr. Blair is currently invisible.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Maybe he’s in Burma. Again. With FCO assistance all the way…

    http://burmacampaign.org.uk/media/FCO-refusal-Tony-Blair-FOI-9th-December-2013..pdf

    Some significant admissions there. If HMG is assisting Blair, is HMG also paying Blair (other than his huge pension and security detail)? So many questions, every time you look at Blair’s activities.

    From-

    http://burmacampaign.org.uk/tony-blairs-secret-involvement-with-burmas-government/

    So, what’s in Burma for Blair?

    What his motives are for courting Burma’s leaders are unclear, for as Farmaner notes, “Prime Minister Tony Blair showed little interest in Burma”. He had promised to introduce tougher sanctions when campaigning for office, but backtracked once in government. “The most we got was a bland three line statement on Aung San Suu Kyi’s birthday,” says Farmaner.

    http://asiancorrespondent.com/91064/tony-blair-adds-burma-to-se-asia-good-governance-tour/

    Answer, he’s doing it from the goodness of his global-sized heart. And is absolutely indifferent to Burma’s huge natural resources and wholly unconnected with the China Investment Corporation.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2301755/Blair-heads-gold-rush-Burma-Former-Prime-Minister-opens-new-personal-empire-junta-relaxes-grip.html

    Naturally.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Pro bono Blair….spilling the beans.

    http://www.balkaninsight.com/en/article/blair-s-world-bank-role-queried-by-watchdog

    “We will cover some of the cost [of a previous visit to Albania in 2013 -BZ], but in reality the project will be covered by international donors, friends of this country,” Blair told Albania’s Top Channel TV.

    According to Chowla, what Blair means is that his consultancy bill for the Global Network of Delivery Leaders with all likelihood will be covered by a trust fund managed by the World Bank.

    Chowla explained that the trust fund is usually filled by grants from main donor countries, like the UK, Germany and France.

    “The World Bank, which hosts the trust fund, takes a cut of the money for its administrative work, which is around 15-to-25 per cent, and then the trust fund has its own policies and procedures on how it contracts services,” Chowla noted.

    “If the bank is developing a trust fund, and they are benefitting from the contracts that that trust fund might send out for procurement, there is certainly a conflict of interests there,” he added.

    According to Chowla, Blair’s former staffer, Barber, who has been advising the World Bank on deliverology, works also for an education consulting company owned by the Person* Group, which could potentially create another case of a conflict of interest if it is awarded a contract.

    *Pearson Group. Education, edu….

    http://fortune.com/2015/01/21/everybody-hates-pearson/

    Have donated to both New Labour and the Tories. Globalising education is their agenda.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    China wasn’t that far out. He’s in Vietnam, again.

    Along with the cooperation mechanism between the two sides, content meeting between former British Prime Minister and Minister Dinh La Thang afternoon, 3/3, focusing on projects Dau Giay – Phan Thiet and equitization of Vietnam Airlines .
    Tony Blair wants to cooperate with Vietnam in many fields.
    You bet he does.
    His meeting with Minister Tony Blair has been the Ministry of Transport announced the schedule of the leaders of the day 3/3. Earlier, Chief Representative of Asia’s Tony Blair Asscociates Company (TBA) sent a letter to the Ministry, suggested organizing a meeting, to share the work of TBA in Vietnam

    http://www.tienphong.vn/Kinh-Te/ong-tony-blair-gap-bo-truong-thang-ban-co-phan-hoa-vietnam-airlines-828338.tpo

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Continuing Tony Blair’s passionate concern for human rights…

    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/vietnam-country-of-concern/vietnam-country-of-concern

    While there have been some positive developments in Vietnam on human rights in 2013, the overall situation remains of significant concern. In August, Vietnam resumed implementation of the death penalty after a pause of almost two years. Detentions and harassment of bloggers, demonstrators and human rights defenders (HRDs) increased over the year. The Vietnamese government introduced a new law regulating the use of the internet and effectively tightening its control. On the positive side, HRDs were increasingly active and able to raise the profile of some human rights issues in Vietnam, including by holding the first Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender (LGBT) parade. Vietnam signed the UN Convention against Torture and gained a seat on the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

    In 2013, the UK’s human rights objectives in Vietnam were to: support freedom of expression; increase awareness of the potential role of the media to support a responsible and accountable state; increase debate on the death penalty, particularly on the number of crimes which attract the death penalty; facilitate the development of civil society to tackle issues such as land rights effectively; and to tackle corruption.

    In general, the lack of transparency and legal and political accountability in one-party state Vietnam remain the most serious obstacles to progress. The UK raised human rights issues at all levels in its contacts with the Vietnamese government, including during the General Secretary’s visit to the UK in February and during the most recent UK-Vietnam Strategic Dialogue in October. We continue to work closely with EU partners in order to encourage Vietnam toward more open and frank discussion of human rights, including through the third annual EU-Vietnam Human Rights Dialogue in September.

    We implemented projects funded by our Human Rights and Democracy Programme Fund, with a particular focus on improving journalists’ safety and access to information. We were proud to be the first embassy in Vietnam to use our website as a platform to host a blog supporting the growing LGBT rights movement in Vietnam.

    2014 will shine the spotlight on Vietnam’s human rights record. With a seat on the UNHRC and with its Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in February, international and domestic scrutiny of Vietnam’s domestic human rights situation will increase. Should Vietnam choose, this could present an opportunity to demonstrate its commitment to international standards and the sincerity of its engagement on human rights. The Vietnamese government has listed its own priorities for the UPR as strengthening human rights education; strengthening the legal system and policies on human rights; and implementation of its international human rights obligations. We will look to support these pledges, and will use the opportunity to expand our human rights dialogue with the Vietnamese government. Our priorities remain to facilitate domestic debate on the death penalty and encourage a reduction in the number of crimes that carry the death sentence; encourage greater transparency; and reduce corruption by working with a range of Vietnamese government actors and the private sector. In addition, we will lobby the Vietnamese government to allow 2014’s LGBT parade to hold official status. 
    Freedom of expression

    The UK remains gravely concerned about violations of the right to freedom of expression in Vietnam. Those who criticise the government or express views which dissent from those of the Communist Party of Vietnam are frequently subject to monitoring, harassment, detention and prison sentences.

    In July and August, a broad coalition of activists formed the “258 group”, with the aim of promoting human rights and democracy in Vietnam. Their specific activities included calling for the repeal of Penal Code article 258 (which sets out prison terms for those “abusing democratic freedoms to infringe upon the interests of the State”) and highlighting Vietnam’s commitments as a candidate for a seat on the UNHRC. The group attracted international attention, and the EU met representatives of the group ahead of the EU-Vietnam Human Rights Dialogue in September. Subsequently, a number of the group’s members and their families were subject to harassment and detention by the Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security.

    The Vietnamese government introduced Decree 72 in September to regulate the internet, including copyright infringement. Human rights activists and international organisations expressed deep concern that the decree could be used to violate freedom of expression and control content, including on social media sites. The UK supported a statement from the Freedom Online Coalition highlighting Vietnam’s international human rights obligations on freedom of expression and, through the EU Delegation, raised concerns with the Vietnamese government. The Vietnamese have started the process of drafting the guidelines that will define how the law is implemented. So far no legal cases have been brought under Decree 72.

    Looks like a natural candidate for Blair-mediated dollars.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    En clair, from Vietnam’s state interpreter…

    He thanked the UK Government for its official development assistance (ODA) provision for Vietnam, wishing the former PM to help Vietnam access preferential capital resources from multilateral channels and international development foundations to use, in particular, for climate change response, green growth and education and training.

    http://en.vietnamplus.vn/Home/Former-British-PM-Tony-Blair-visits-Vietnam/20153/62222.vnplus

    Oh, not looking for investment in an airline and a PFI trunk road then…maybe it got lost in the translation? That’ll be some Pearson Group primaries, with a side order of Laureate universities, and some greenfield development to follow. Job done. Globalised.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Last week, Tony Blair was in Serbia not collecting any money at all for a deal not funded by UAE to globalise Serbia’s low-cost work units. (NGO “Transparency Serbia” urged the government yesterday to provide the public with clear information about the visit and the engagement of Tony Blair, “even if it is a donation”, alluding to allegations that the engagement of his consulting company is “a gift from Emirates.” ) – http://inserbia.info/today/2015/03/few-details-known-about-tony-blairs-meeting-with-serbian-ministers/

    Next week Serbia will be doubly blessed as Cherie Blair is expected to visit on the 13th. Cherie is mainly concerned with monetising female work units, globally. And becoming very rich in her own right.

    Tony and Cherie don’t seem to meet very often, though.

    http://www.thelawyer.com/firms-and-the-bar/cherie-blair-welcomed-to-belgrade-with-disputes-seminar/3032323.article

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Mr. Tony was still in Vietnam today, promoting the privatisation of state enterprises:

    Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair is visited Vietnam, and according to local media, he has advised the Hanoi government “should privatize state enterprises”.

    According to Blair, the advantages of Vietnam can learn from countries ahead, like the UK, to apply yourself and accelerate the reform process.

    (Google Translation from http://www.voatiengviet.com/content/ong-tony-blair-tao-cu-hich-cho-kinh-te-vietnam/2667279.html )

    We must remember that since he left government for a higher calling – making money for himself, hedge funds and dictators – he hasn’t spent enough time in his own country properly to assess the outcome of his genius solution to problems we didn’t actually have.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Sometimes you just have to admit that Guido’s right once in a while:

    Alastair Campbell, today, on why David Cameron is a coward for ducking the TV debates:

    “How well I remember David Cameron proclaiming how marvellous the TV leaders’ debates were and, more importantly, how vital they were to the democratic process in the modern media age. And how pathetic it is, five years on, to watch his wriggling and weaselling to avoid them… I can see why one on one, policy v policy, plan v plan, he might want to duck this. But it is morally cowardly and democratically wrong.”

    Alastair Campbell, in 2001, on why Tony Blair was not a coward for ducking the TV debates:

    “The UK is not electing a president and our political and constitutional positions are entirely different. [We are not taking part because of] all the blah and the ballyhoo that would surround it… four days of build up to every debate, this is where they’ll stand and this is what they’ll do, and this is the people advising them and this is what they’ll wear, and blah blah blah.”

    What was that about “pathetic”, “weaselling”, “morally cowardly and democratically wrong”?

    http://order-order.com/

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Craig Murray,

    Love You Mate..You are one of our Rare Heroes

    God Bless You Sir…

    I wrote this just now on The Daily Telegraph..what do you reckon..

    What The Fck Are You Guys Talking About..What Happens in The Countryside in ENGLAND or what Happens in The Countryside of ALL The Places We Have Been Bombing For The Americans and The Israelis??

    Not on My Fckin Land…??

    You are All a Bunch of hypocrites..who couldn’t give a Shiit about all those Millions of Innocent Men, Women and Children..

    All You Care About Is Your Pet FOX..whilst eating Chickens From Sainsburys

    Come Back To Me..when You Have Something Sensible To Say.

    You Are Full of Rotten Brainwashed Garbage..

    Go There…Meet These People..We are Killing

    Tony

  • Ba'al Zevul

    I’d like to welcome the Spectator’s Steerpike to the exclusive club of persons following Tony Blair’s global anabasis. Well done you.

    http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/steerpike/2015/03/tony-blair-spotted-in-burma/

    Original source:

    http://yangon.coconuts.co/2015/03/05/tony-blair-back-myanmar-spotted-dining-nay-pyi-daw
    This places Blair in Myanmar on the 4th, as well as in Vietnaam, where and when he is extensively reported by VN media. However, it is all too likely that it’s true:

    While the mystery remains about exactly what the former Labour leader is up to, Mark Farmaner, director of Burma Campaign UK , expects that it involves PR for Burma’s president. He told Coconuts Media that he had written to Blair’s office 20 times in a bid to discover what type of advice he is offering to President Thein Sein. ‘We assume that as Blair refuses to disclose what he is doing, it involves advising Thein Sein on public relations with the international community,’ Farmaner says.

    See also mine of 3 March, 10.42. Must be telepathic, me.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Couldn’t put it better myself:

    http://www.irrawaddy.org/burma/tony-blair-criticized-poor-transparency-burma-dealings.html

    Zoya Phan, the campaign manager at Burma Campaign UK, called on Blair to transparently disclose his involvement with Thein Sein.

    “Given that Tony Blair has ignored eleven requests over the past year asking what he is doing in Burma, we can only assume that it is controversial and he wants to keep it a secret,” she said in the statement on Thursday.

    “Giving strategic, political and public relations advice to the military-backed government while its soldiers are still attacking and killing civilians and raping ethnic women, would be deplorable. Tony Blair used to preach the need for transparency, now he should practice it and come clean about what he is doing in Burma.”

    Mystic Ba’al opines that the UAE is probably involved somehow. And mining. And oil.

    Give the money back, Ed. It’s fairy gold.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Right. He was there.

    http://www.myanmarinternationaltv.com/news/receiving-guest-speaker-meets-former-british-pm
    Speaker of Pyithu Hluttaw People’s parliament Thura U Shwe Man received former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, at Hluttaw building in Nay Pyi Taw on Thursday. Also present at the call were chair of international relations committee U Hla Myint Oo and responsible persons from the Pyithu Hluttaw* office.

    * Lower legislative house. 440 members, 330 elected, 110 appointed by the army. Largest party by far, with 57% of seats in 2010 (next largest had 4.9%) is the USDP:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Union_Solidarity_and_Development_Party

    The upper house is actually better than the Lords in thet some of its members are elected, although 20% are appointed by the army, and the party statistics are remarkably similar to those above.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Given that in VN Tony Blair’s attention was reportedly focussed on the ‘equitisation’ (read sale to hedge fund or Arabs) of Vietnam Airlines, it would be entirely rational to think that he entered Myanmar via the Vietnam Airlines flight HVN957 from Hanoi to Yangon, which landed at 1831 on the 4th (local time). If so, we may be sure that the service in the first class cabin was of unprecedented quality, and guess that his flight was free. It won’t take him long to recoup that £106,000, will it?

  • Ba'al Zevul

    For some opaque reason, the citizens of Myanmar held a pro-democracy demonstration yesterday –

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-1221840?ref=feeds%2Flatest

    Near the City Hall, Yangon.

    About halfway through, as the citizens, again for reasons unknown, respectfully retreat from the (EU-trained) police, there is a quick but unmistakeable glimpse of a Union Jack.

    Perish the thought that anyone was in the square to welcome the untiring British champion of freedom ‘n’,er,stuff who was also in Yangon at the time. Or that he could possibly be aware of this as he discussed governance, delivery and investment with his fellow important people.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    ^^^^
    Julia Yun Hulme, Omnia’s managing director, refused to say what the latest legal contract was worth to the company. She also declined to say if Omnia had won contracts in any other countries advised by Mr Blair. She said in a statement: “Omnia Strategy LLP is a law firm regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. Mr Blair is not involved with Omnia Strategy LLP.” Rapiscan declined to comment.

    *tears of mirth running down trousers*

    This is one of the most suspicious deals I have yet seen from Blair and Blair. Well worth a read.

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