Have I become far too cynical or did I just witness one of the most blatant and unconvincing bits of acting and spin ever broadcast? Alastair Campbell 'getting upset' at Andrew Marr's questions about the Chilcot Inquiry - and about Marr's introductory quip comparing the legendary dodgy dossier with Campbell's latest work of fiction - was something to behold. I note that this dramatic turn of events allowed him not to answer the question, and suspect that's why he 'got upset'. Now, I may be doing Campbell a disservice. That quip of Marr's would have annoyed me too had I been on the receiving end of it. But I've seen The Thick Of It & this could have been a scene from any of its episodes. (Anyhow, if anyone deserves to be on the receiving end of a few disservices it's surely the man who led the sucking-out of all honour from our political system under New Labour and has handed out more than a few disservices himself over the years.)
When Campbell talked of Marr's own views on the Iraq War, which no-one who listened to Start the Week's endless coverage of the Iraq War and its consequences at the time - and for a long time after - (I got so fed up with hearing about it and associated Muslim-related subjects, week in and week out, that I gave up on the programme completely) could be in any doubt about, Marr made this extraordinary comment: "I don't have an opinion of this." Like hell he doesn't. If he thinks he's kept his strong disapproval of the war hidden, he's a very deluded man indeed.
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