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Water Beds

by | 10th, April 2006

‘ON Monday, Condoleezza Rice, the US Secretary of State, arrived in the UK with lots of baggage – chiefly the war in Iraq.

‘Those the holes I heard so much about?’

Rice was in Blackburn and Liverpool for the second of her dates with Foreign Secretary Jack Straw.

But Rice’s baggage was holding her back. She was not welcome at Blackburn’s Masjid al-Hidayah mosque. She was heckled at Blackburn’s Pleckgate high school. Poet Roger McGough declined to take part in a gala evening in Rice’s honour (so not all bad, then).

At least nothing could stop Rice attending the football match between Straw’s beloved Blackburn Rovers and Wigan. Sadly, there was something. TV deals meant the match was rescheduled, meaning Rice was shown around an empty stadium.

But such is the special nature of this relationship that Condi may not have noticed the lack of fans and vulgar chants about her and Bush.

And on Tuesday we saw that things between Condi and Jack were as special as ever. On board a flight to Kuwait, Condi offered Jack her bed.

This was ‘Bedgate’. And not wishing to spark a diplomatic incident, Jack gallantly took Condi’s bed and got his head down for the night. She bunked down on an aisle. And there was much love a mile up.

Down on planet Earth, the war on terror arrived in a cab on route to Tees Valley airport. On Wednesday, we saw Harraj Mann plug his MP3 player into a taxi’s onboard entertainment system and take the driver on a trip down memory lane.

Mann sang Procal Harem’s Whiter Shade of Pale. He belted out Led Zeppelin’s Immigrant Song. And he gave full throat to the lyrics to The Clash’s London Calling.

The driver had heard enough. He called the police. The cops raced to the scene and frogmarched Mann off for questioning. “What’s this about engines failing? When is the meltdown? War is declared! On whom?”

Mann was eventually released. But the message was clear – we were being watched. We live in uncertain times. The Government wants us to watch each other.

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Posted: 10th, April 2006 | In: Broadsheets Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink