The row peaked this week with Britain’s ambassador to the US, Sir Kim Darroch, finally handing in his resignation. That was only three days after the seasoned diplomat caused major embarrassment, when his secret memos to London revealed derogatory views about the Trump administration.
In the memos dating back to June 2017, Darroch slated President Trump as being "inept" and "incompetent", and, the diplomat advised, the US administration was “dysfunctional” because of infighting. The comments were indeed critical, but arguably not a sacking offense. Diplomats are expected to give such frank assessments to their superiors in confidence.
Trump, however, reacted furiously to the sensitive disclosures. He slammed the British envoy as “a stupid guy” and “wacky ambassador”.
But it was the White House’s unprecedented decision earlier this week to cut off official communications with the British ambassador that really put the kibosh on Darroch’s posting in Washington. The ambassador was forced to resign because of Trump’s snub – and from the way certain British politicians rolled over in the face of Washington’s fury.
It is the first time any head of state has refused to work with a British consular official, the top mandarin in Britain’s foreign office, Sir Simon McDonald, told BBC. And, furthermore, this astounding slap down to Britain’s international esteem is delivered by the president of the United States, supposedly the nation with whom Britain has a “special relationship”!
What the spat shows, in unvarnished terms, is Britain’s real, menial, position with regard to the US. Self-styled “Great Britain” is nothing more than a minion which can be treated with contempt and impunity by an American president.
The so-called special relationship which was coined by former British leader Winston Churchill following the Second World War is in reality not a mutual alliance, but one in which Britain serves as a lapdog to do Washington’s bidding. A top function for Britain over past decades is to support American imperialist wars and intrigues through providing diplomatic and military support for criminal adventures.
When British navy commandoes commandeered an Iranian oil cargo last week off Gibraltar, it was reportedly at the behest of Washington. That’s the typical subservient role Britain plays for US power.
British officials and establishment media have always fantasized about having a “special relationship” with the US. That notion plumps up Britain’s official ego as a still-relevant world power despite having lost its empire a century ago. By and large, Washington has indulged the British conceit by appearing to reciprocate with compliments and endearments.
During President Trump recent state visit to the United Kingdom he, of course, toasted and eulogized about America’s “great ally”. But scratch the rhetorical surface, and it soon becomes apparent that the US can flex its muscles and dispense with Britain as if were a flunkey.
When Trump excoriated the former British ambassador it was a blistering rebuke, which belittles Britain’s authorities.
Britain’s outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May initially sought to defend the envoy in Washington, saying he had the right to make critical assessments of political developments in the US and of the Trump administration. That’s what ambassadors are tasked to do.
Why someone leaked the classified communications is another matter. But the British government had an obligation to stand by their man in Washington as a matter of principle and sovereignty.
Boris Johnson, who is expected to succeed May as prime minister later this month, threw the ambassador under the bus in a TV debate this week when he refused to say if he would stand by the ambassador in the row with Trump. Instead, Johnson emphasized how he had “great relations” with the White House.
It was this lack of support from Boris Johnson, the anticipated new British leader, that reportedly prompted Ambassador Darroch to throw the towel in. It also shows how unscrupulous Bumbling Boris is in advancing his career by fawning and ingratiating himself with Trump.
Effectively, what Trump has demonstrated is his ability to wield a veto over London’s authority for appointing who its ambassador is in the US. Britain’s sovereignty has just been given a big poke in the eye. And what’s more, the British government can’t do anything about it. Trump has shown with his inimitable bullying manner just how pathetic “Little Britain” is when it comes to its real relationship with the US.
The inescapable conclusion is that Britain is a minion and flunkey for US imperialist power. When push comes to shove, its American master can dismiss Britain like a boring butler.
Views and opinions, expressed in the article are those of the columnist and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.