"With Iraq inevitably casting a shadow over his legacy after a decade in Downing Street..." Daily Torygraph
"With Iraq inevitably casting a shadow over his legacy after a decade in Downing Street..." - Sky News
"Iraq will cast shadow on Blair's legacy" - USA Today
"Iraq war casts long shadow over Blair's tenure" - St Petersburg Times
"How Iraq cast a shadow over Blair’s foreign policy" - FT
Blah blah blah blah blah.
Two million people lifted out of of poverty? Overshadowed. Half a million children lifted out of child poverty? Overshadowed. 20% cut in unemployment? Overshadowed.
The question is: for whom are these achievements overshadowed by the war? I believe that it is not the proverbial citizen on the Clapham omnibus, but the cosseted denizens of the media village and the middle class chatterers who set their life by them. For most people, if Blair’s legacy is overshadowed by something, it is the fact that our schools and our hospitals are still fucked – the sort of day to day concerns that actually make a difference to our lives. It is only for a narrow elite that guilt about distant, abstract suffering trumps the tangible suffering of those nearby. In other words, if
It is probably vain to hope that in the long run the removal of the Taliban and the Ba’athists might be seen as the high point if Blair’s legacy, but it is instrucitve that in the week that the West’s liberal press considers this his worst mistake, the democratically mandated government of Iraq calls for Gordon Brown to keep our troops in Iraq.
(And what, by the way, is Jimmy Carter's presidency remembered for?)