Under the guise of taking back control, the UK is taking itself out of the international order
In its vain-glorious quest for freedom the UK is retreating into obscurity
"No reform of the United Nations is complete without the composition of the Security Council changing to reflect contemporary realities of the 21st Century," India's Permanent Mission to the UN remarks. The Security Council is the UN's supreme power. It has five permanent members: Russia, China, the United States of America, France and the United Kingdom - and other seats that rotate between the world's other countries. From that list, it's a field of one for who India should replace.
Under the guise of taking back control, the UK is taking itself out of the international order while simultaneously discovering it has long been punching.
When The Mail on Sunday reported leaked diplomatic reports from Sir Kim Darroch, the British ambassador to the US, detailing Donald Trump's dysfunctional White House its headline read "Our man in US says Trump is 'inept.'" Nothing about the messages was particularly revelatory. They describe an incompetent American administration. Similar reports can be found by the thousand in the US' two most iconic newspapers, The New York Times and The Washington Post, and two well-publicised books authored by Michael Wolff.
Short of a grand conspiracy between Sir Kim and the White House press corps, the diplomat was doing a diplomat's job. Providing frank assessment of a foreign government and how best to further British interests in light of that assessment. So maladjusted is Trump, he exploded in response to the Mail story.
...handled. I told @theresa_may how to do that deal, but she went her own foolish way-was unable to get it done. A disaster! I don’t know the Ambassador but have been told he is a pompous fool. Tell him the USA now has the best Economy & Military anywhere in the World, by far...
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 9, 2019
He declared he would no longer work with Darroch, who was swiftly uninvited from a dinner with the president and the Emir of Qatar. The ambassador promptly resigned his post and, just like that, "our man" and sovereign representative to our closest ally was sacked by his charge. The UK no longer retains control of the hiring process for its most coveted diplomatic posting, so short is it of political capital.
One other factor in Sir Kim's resignation was the lack of an endorsement during ITV's Conservative leadership debate from Boris Johnson, the Tory who would be king, coronation due on July 24. He will assume control of a party, dogged by allegations of Islamophobia, careering toward a non-negotiated exit from the European Union.
Across the aisle from Johnson in the House of Commons, the Labour party is riven by its own racism scandal. This week Marie van der Zyl, the president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, said Labour's leader Jeremy Corbyn is "personally responsible for having turned a once great, anti-racist party into a cesspit of anti-Semitism."
The old order is collapsing as the UK withdraws from union with its nearest and most significant trading partner.
The most fantastic part of the self-immolation is that it is a product of little England's neuroses. Xenophobia and delusions of grandeur, a hunger to look upon the world map and again see a third of it daubed pink. But there is no glory in empire. It is a synonym for racism and conquest.
It is the nostalgia for blue passports, and golden days that never existed, which provide comedy in what are otherwise mortifying times. An island of the elderly who dream of Churchill, a man responsible for starving 4 million people to death in India.
This is what taking back control, and contemporary reality, looks like.