STOTTY ON SUNDAY: PHONEY WARRIOR.
IMAGINE what would have happened if Winston Churchill had turned his famous V for Victory two fingers round to President Roosevelt when the US dictated the role of British troops on D-Day.
There can only be one commander in an invasion coalition and it must be the country with the largest number of troops and greatest firepower.
So the bitter resentment and suspicion over the movement of British troops in Iraq is militarily unjustified. But the row has nothing to with that, or even the safety of our troops. They will not be under any greater threat in the area they are about to take over than they are in Basra.
It is about the deep lack of trust in Tony Blair. His reasons for invading Iraq, his failure to accept that he took us to war on a false prospectus and the disastrous strategy of allying himself so closely to a President who, as every day passes, shows graphically he had no idea what he was doing. (The latest revelation - by one of his right-wing religious supporters - is that Bush believed there would be no US casualties).
However hard Blair tries to convince the country the US move on Fallujah has nothing to do with the presidential election, few will accept his assurances. His credibility is shot through. There aren't many who will believe the two are not connected, and why should they?
Blair is paying the price of not only misleading us into war, but for treating us like fools when it became clear he had.