So I'm thinking about the graph I created comparing Bush and Blair's poll ratings amongst their respective populaces and I noticed something interesting. Over here in the UK, Blair is less popular amongst his constituents than Bush is amongst Americans. In fact, Blair is consistently less popular. However, if you look at the graph, it appears that there is a rough correlation in their respective fortunes (more data is needed and if you could point me to a reliable source, I'd love to see it). There is is one significant discrepancy, though. Towards the end of last July, Blair's relatively unpopularity sunk even further while Bush simply remained unpopular. Why would Blair drop and Bush not?
Well, that's about when the Israel problem started to again spiral out of control. Bush's "see no evil" attitude fits in well with American's general apathy towards anything other than Britney Spears and the like. Blair's decision to once again play "monkey see, monkey do" with Bush tremendously angered Britain. American opinion didn't change, but the British are just about fed up and now Blair is trying to control a revolt within his own party. So how does he handle it? Well, first he goes on holiday. Then, after an investigation allegedly lasting months, a major terrorism ring is busted. Hey, look over there!
Now I'm not suggesting that a major terrorism ring wasn't busted. I'm suggesting that the timing on this looks a wee bit too coincidental. In fact, some Brits I've talked to are muttering the same thing. From the article I linked to, here are two successive paragraphs, the first referring to an alleged "go order" which was intercepted:
According to [some government] sources, the message was intercepted and decoded by either British or US intelligence in the past 72 hours, spurring counterterrorism officials to intensify the investigation against the alleged plotters.
Mr Clarke suggested yesterday that the alleged bombers may not yet have created the bombs they intended to use.
So a go order may have been given to terrorists who may not have built bombs. It's interesting reading about this because there seem to be an awful lot of "anonymous sources" talking to the media about what happened behind the scenes and in intelligence circles. Frankly, I don't know what to believe, but just as more terror alerts seem to come out as Bush's approval drops further, so to do I find it curious that during Tony Blair's greatest crisis comes one of the strongest successes in the "war on terror".
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know why more terrorist attacks are being planned against the US and the UK. It does take a bit of time to read history to find out why they might be pissed off at us in the first place (and they have real grievances). They've certainly not been angels, but you know, why do Blair and Bush have to be Old Testament "eye for an eye" kind of guys instead of New Testament "turn the other cheek" inspirations?