With the recent surge in casualties (8 British troops killed in one single day) in Afghanistan, you may have noticed a spike in right-wing commentators blaming Gordon Brown.
As you know, this blog is not fond of this New Labour government. However, we also think that, far too often, the same papers who are happy to beat the drums of war, any war, think of it as a game of Playstation 3. The only scenario they can envisage from their settee is: our Boys fly over, bomb the crap out of the bearded ones, raid a few villages and bob's your uncle, off they go and mission accomplished.
But our friends from the tabloids are simply incapable to fathom that war is war. Quite simply because, lucky them, they've never been in one. As they scramble for scapegoats, one comes in cheap and convenient: Punchbag Gordon.
And so you get Sun Defence editor Tom Newton Dunn writing that "Boys pay for mean Brown", while Richard Littlejohn in the Daily Mail states that "They're paying the blood price of putting welfare before warfare", with the added attack on "a Prime Minister who puts 'diversity' before defence and gives a higher priority to a Gay Pride march than to the mortal sacrifices being made by young men in Afghanistan in the name of Queen and Country". Highly relevant, you see.
Leo McKinstry in the Daily Express joins in, saying that "Labour's vanity" is what's killing British troops in Afghanistan. "Hundreds more brave young men are being sacrificed on the altar of Gordon Brown’s socialist arrogance", he writes, adding that British troops are there because Brown is "desperate to curry favour" with President Obama.
Is it possible that no-one was available at the Express to remind McKinstry that neither Brown nor Obama started the war? It happened to be a man called George W Bush who, the same McKinstry wrote in the Telegraph back in 2004, "through his toughness [was] successful[ly] demilitarising the most dangerous regimes on the planet".