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London’s “Special Relationship” with Washington: A History of U.S.-British Collaboration In War and Covert Actions

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An article in today’s Christian Science Monitor begins: “Eleven years ago, as then-President Bush contemplated the enormity of expelling the Iraqi Army from Kuwait,Britain’s then-Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher famously urged him not to “go wobbly.”

“He didn’t, and Mrs. Thatcher’s successor, Tony Blair, is now repaying the new President Bush in spades as America’sfirmest and most outspoken ally in the war against terrorism.

“Rarely has the “special relationship” that binds London and Washington been so special, and rarely has Mr. Blairthrived so forcefully as over the past three weeks of preparations for retaliation against those held responsible forthe attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.When Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld toured Oman, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Uzbekistan in a relativelyunsuccessful attempt to secure military support, Prime Minister Blair embarked on a tour of his own. He traveled toPakistan, where he encouraged President Pervez Musharraf to cooperate with the U.S. against Islamabad’s former ally,the Taliban. In the past three weeks Blair has attempted to rally French, German and Russian leaders.

When the U.S. wrote to U.N. Security Council last night to warn that it may attack countries other than Afghanistan,British Prime Minister Tony Blair also suggested for the first time that the war would be widened to include Iraq andother states once the operation against Osama bin Laden and the Taliban was completed.

When countries around the world called for proof linking Osama bin Laden to the September 11 attacks, Britain drafteda summary of evidence and released it to the public.

Britain is the only country which has participated in the U.S. war on Afghanistan.

We’re joined right now by Mark Curtis, a British author whose most recent book is ??The Great Deceptions:Anglo-American Power and World Order.


  • Mark Curtis, author on British foreign policy. His most recent book is ??The Great Deceptions:Anglo-American Power and World Order.

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