By Jason Moore

POLITICS can be rather ironic, can't it. On the one hand you have Tony Blair standing shoulder to shoulder with Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar while on the other hand you have Peter Mandelson, the architect of New Labour in Palma, helping his colleagues in the Spanish socialist party to remove Aznar's party from office at the next elections. Mandelson, as we know, is deeply respected and could give the Spanish Socialists the necessary edge to overcome the right-wing Partido Popular presently chaired by Aznar. But this is always something that has struck me about the Aznar/Blair friendship. One is a conservative with some policies which Blair would find distateful and the other is a so-called socialist whose rhetoric is not exactly what Aznar would like to hear on some keypoints. If the Partido Popular is removed from office at the next elections a very small part of the credit may go to Mandelson. Meanwhile the Spanish Socialist Party is totally opposed to war and think that Blair is just a lap-dog of the United States along with Aznar. Funny games politics.

Support the troops

WAR now appears to be just a few days away. The rights and wrongs of this conflict are no longer an issue for me because British service-people will soon be going into action. It would be wrong for me from the safety of an office in Majorca to criticise our troops at the frontline and the reasons for them being there. I feel they need our backing, and if anything should make Tony Blair proud is the loyalty and the sheer professionalism of the British armed forces. I've always been against this war but for the time being I will be keeping my thoughts to myself and wishing our troops a speedy return home.

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