Well, my diary collaborator, WG, got back from his holiday yesterday but when I contacted him all l got was a few grunts, I suspect he was a bit jet lagged! He wasn’t the only one back from his hols, so was Bozzie, as he finally gave in to all the people moaning about him not being in London to deal with any fallout following the bumping off that Iranian general by the GKP. I must admit it’s nice to have it a bit busier on the Estate but Bozzie’s very grumpy about his holiday being cut short. The crazy welsh mutt has been going mad and rushing round yapping, he’s clearly happy to be out of dog prison.
I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s a pretty poor bunch that are running for the Labour leadership. Of course, we won’t know who is actually on the ballot until the nominations are complete next weekend. Keir Stoma is the current leader, but that means nothing as anyone who gets 22 nominations goes through the first phase. It’s only then that the union block vote takes effect. Stoma is a good left wing pro-European, as are all the others in the running. Personally (can I say that as a cat) I don’t think Clive Lewis will get enough nominations and Lady Nugee might struggle as well. I would love to see the Momentum dream team of Becky Wrong-Daly and Jess Phillips as Leader and Deputy Leader, imagine the fun Bozzie could have at the despatch box.
Finally got in contact with WG, he has a streaming cold and chesty cough so it looks like it might be another abbreviated diary this week. Parliament opens today and there are two main things on the agenda. Firstly, a government statement on the situation in Iran and secondly the debate on the 3rd stage of the E.U. Withdrawal Act. Bozzie has such a big majority that it’s a bit of a waste of time any opposition amendments being tabled, they just aren’t going to get anywhere.
Bozzie upset the opposition this afternoon by not making the statement on Iran himself, instead he sent his security minister. I heard him telling Dom that if they didn’t like it they could lump it! He said he wants to be more like the chairman of a board, give ministers general guidance and let them take more responsibility. He said it’s going to be true rule by cabinet. Today was the funeral of the Iran general killed by the US drone strike. I doubt they managed to find much of him to put in the coffin. It was typical of state organised Muslim funerals, hundreds of thousands of wailing mourners throwing themselves at the cortège. Like so many of these Middle Eastern things it was total chaos. It was reported that 24 mourners died in the crush. I can’t see a similar outcome in the West.
I woke this morning to find Bozzie in the kitchen with both the radio and TV tuned to news channels. It seems the mad Iranians launched ballistic missile attacks on some American air bases in Iraq during the night. Fortunately, the bases are so large and sparsely populated that no one was killed or even injured. A good thing, because the GKP had promised to retaliate if any Americans suffered so much as a scratch. Bozzie stood up at the first PMQ’s of the year and wiped the floor with the Tramp. It wasn’t hard, his heart just isn’t in it these days. Why the Labour Party is taking so long with its selection process I don’t know. Having a dead duck opposition is just what Bozzie wants.
As the day wore on it emerged that it had been busy in Iran, there had been two small earthquakes and a Ukrainian airliner crashed near Tehran killing all 176 people on board. One or two commentators suggested that the plane had been shot down but the Iranians immediately said it was down to mechanical failure.
Up fairly early this morning due to noisy yapping. I never did find out what was wrong with the mutt, perhaps he just needed to get out in the garden for a poo! Anyway, Bozzie had LBC on, listening to Mr Ferrari, who was still talking about the dead Iranian general and how the Iranians were still saying that the plane had suffered “a mechanical failure”. However crazy it may seem some callers seemed to think that Soleimani was a good guy and everything was the fault of the GKP. Not a very busy week on the estate. In Parliament they were still busy discussing the 3rd reading of the E.U. Withdrawal Bill. Keir Stoma got the backing of Britain’s biggest trade union (Unison), making him favourite to be the new Labour leader.
The major story in the news is about Ginge and Whinge. They’ve decided that they want to give up their royal duties, live half the time in the U.K. and the other half in North America. Not really something for Bozzie to get involved with, it’s down to the royal family to sort out.
The British and Irish governments have tabled an agreement to return devolved powers to Northern Ireland. It’s been 3 years since there was any devolved government there, due to a major row between the two biggest parties, the DUP and Sinn Fein. The two main Northern Irish parties both lost seats, a Tory majority means the government no longer really needs DUP support. With their positions eroded they will probably have to agree to disagree, at least in the short term.
The Canadian PM has said that intelligence reports indicate that the Iranians shot down the airliner. The Iranians continue to claim it was mechanical failure. Photos of the wreckage on the internet appear to show punctures to the aircraft’s fuselage, which would be consistent with missile damage. The Iranians have recovered both the cockpit voice recorder and the flight data recorder but have refused to follow normal procedures and hand them over to either the planes manufacturer or British or American air accident inspectors (recognised as the world experts) for decoding. Hanging on to the CVR and the FDR is in itself suspicious but reports are coming in that the Iranians had started to bulldoze the crash site before international inspectors have a chance to see it. The Iranian Ambassador was on the radio this morning saying how ridiculous and insulting it was for the West to be suggesting that Iran had shot down the plane.
While the eyes of Parliament were all on the E.U. Withdrawal Bill and Iran Bozzie and Dom shot off to Chequers for a discussion on the reshuffle that is coming when we leave the E.U. at the end of January. I hear that the agenda included how big a reshuffle would be needed, who among the new MPs looked good enough to take a chance on making junior ministers and which were the most important bills for the new year and in what order they should be presented.
Bozzie is still away at Chequers with Dom and the lady who runs the party business. I hear that it’s her job to write to every minister, to lay down the priorities for their departments for the coming parliamentary session once said priorities have been decided! This is all part of Bozzie’s cabinet government trial. He wants to be the chairman of the board and all his ministers to be divisional directors.
lt’s not all bad, Bozzie not being here, the Little Otter has bought me some cat treats, I think she must have seen them advertised on the TV. They’re little crunchy things and they’re my favourite Chicken flavour. They’re really scrumptious; I could eat a whole bagful in one sitting. Just as well she only gives me a dozen or so once a day as she says I mustn’t get fat. She’s a bit obsessed with people getting fat, she’s always talking about Bozzie’s weight. The mutt will have to watch out, he’ll eat anything! A big surprise this morning. The Iranians have admitted that they shot down the Ukrainian airliner. After spending days denying it they’ve finally been forced to admit that they hit the plane with a surface to air missile. Of course, they’ve tried to make it look like they weren’t totally to blame by claiming that the plane was flying towards a sensitive area. The odd thing was that the plane was operating under air traffic control orders and was squawking its identification, as all civilian aircraft always do. Will they now release the CVR and the FDR, as the Ukrainians have requested?
The death of Qaboos bin Said Al Said, the Sultan of Oman was announced today. It’s traditional in the Middle East to hold a funeral very quickly. As Britain has a very close relationship with Oman I suspect that Bozzie will have to interrupt his weekend at Chequers and fly out for the Funeral, should it be announced for tomorrow.
That’s your lot for this week, I hope to be back on Monday.
© WorthingGooner 2020
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