Polls tracking the perception of America in the UK put America among villians (and, of course, everyone’s favorite punching bag, Israel). BritainandAmerica.com says that almost all British politicians are driven solely by public opinion, so guess what? We just lost another ally.
Gordon Brown will soon succeed Tony Blair as Prime Minister. The ground has been well prepared for a switch in emphasis from Britain as America’s comrade-in-arms, to Britain as closer to Europe. Brown’s strategists, who have already spun that he will ‘stand up to America’, are counting on a halo effect in part from his painting himself as the man who brought our boys back from Iraq.
The failure of the US Embassy in the UK to make America’s case to the British public has contributed extensively to this disaster. Churchill’s last advice to his people was, “Never allow yourselves to be separated from the Americans.” A public relations catastrophe has let that happen.
How far we all have fallen. Churchill is one of the most revered figures in British history, and was even voted greatest-ever Briton in the 2002 BBC poll the “100 Greatest Britons“. Its not just in the UK, either. Churchill was the 10th most admired person by American’s in the 20th Century, according to Gallup, and in 1963 he became the first ever Honorary Citizen of the U.S.
We are supposed to learn from history, and from those wiser than us. How can someone so great, so admired be forgotten and his wisdom ignored only 60 years after he’s out of office? Can you picture Churchill rolling in his grave over the current state of politics in Britain and America right now?