HM Ambassador to the US and those leaks

Fair enough. I should have said that in a couple of years, the same kind of flapping, short attention span, inconsistency and laser self-interest that Boris has shown previously, will not have changed just because he is PM. I also think the Conservatives are doing it based on a desperately poor assumption: that he is a voter draw. This is based on very, very old data, in a very unrepresentative part of the country (London), and before he became a polarising figure due to Brexit.

If there is any group I wouldn't poll to understand what the majority of the population are interested in, it's the Conservative membership.
When you say ‘Conservatives’, are you talking about the parliamentary party or the general membership?

I reckon most of the MP’s are a lot closer to your assessment than the rank-and-file.

I also reckon a lot of those rank-and-file aren’t thinking past 31/10/19.
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
I mean, it does, for the reasons that I said above. Regardless of whether Darroch's position was tenable, if your shtick is strong global leadership, you don't let foreign leaders dictate your embassy staff. You support them, wait until it dies down, and then quietly find a way for them to leave early. That is how the game is played. It's not trying to win an unwinnable hand, it's refusing to let the other guy get a clear win in public. Boris basically just surrendered immediately.

It's basically absurd that you're claiming it's not. If this was either any other world leader, or another politician who you didn't happen to be supporting this month, you would call him a surrender monkey. It's 100% clear from your previous posts that you understand the value of posture and strength/weakness on the international stage. Be consistent.

Sure, lots of people aren't objective. It's not remotely clear to me that was Darroch's problem. Can you show evidence, or is this an assumption based on your own biases: that all contrary opinions must emanate from opposition to Brexit or conservatism?

Questionable. If he had published this stuff himself, sure that would have been professionally inept. This is well within the normal running of DIPTELs, however. If you read the comments, he's confirming / denying media reports. This is a standard and useful multi-source approach: "you will have read all the media saying X about Smashganistan, and our internal discussions accord with this view". Of course it's an opinion, but that's (part of) what diplomats are paid to do: relay informed opinions back home. It's a separate source of confirmation / denial of other reporting.

Also, the idea that his language should have been more diplomatic is straight up wrong. Diplomats are paid to be diplomatic to their hosts. They are equally paid to be honest to their government. There is a much better case to be made that Trump should have been less sensitive. He acted, characteristically, like a child having a tantrum to a perfectly routine, if unflattering, assessment. Should we grovel to every national leader who reacts that way to what our diplomats think of them? Putin? Khamenei? Kim? Xi? Again, you taking this side is absurd. You have values. Apply them consistently.
What do you mean 'Boris folded immediately'? The fate of Darroch wasn't in Johnson's hands, it was a question for PMTM and the FCO. As it was, Darroch decided to resign and took the decision out of everyone's hands. Why should Johnson burn up political capital trying to defend the indefensible?

In terms of writing style, as has been pointed out many times in this thread, there is a professional way to go about it and professionals should apply it, particularly in the age of Wikileaks. It is perfectly possible to make your meaning clear without causing massive embarrassment if it ends up in the wrong hands, it just requires a bit of care and thought.

By contrast, Darroch seems to have reverted to highly subjective and emotive adjectives such as 'inept' and 'chaotic' without giving any meaningful context which would allow the reader both to evaluate his assessment and consider the appropriate action. Such descriptions are dangerously loaded and vague to the point of utter uselessness for practical policy development. That's part of the reason I believe his views were clouded by his politics - the mistake in question is not that of a dispassionate observer and suggests a variation of the old saying: "Speak in anger and you'll make the best speech you'll ever regret".

For whatever reason, Darroch made a rookie error, unforgivable for someone in his position, and he had to go, hence he himself took the initiative and resigned. The idea that this is somehow kow towing to Trump is simply hysterical nonsense, as is the suggestion that it is on a par with doing the bidding of Putin, Khamenei, Kim and Xi, unless you somehow believe that they collectively represent our most important strategic ally.
 
What do you mean 'Boris folded immediately'? The fate of Darroch wasn't in Johnson's hands, it was a question for PMTM and the FCO. As it was, Darroch decided to resign and took the decision out of everyone's hands. Why should Johnson burn up political capital trying to defend the indefensible?

In terms of writing style, as has been pointed out many times in this thread, there is a professional way to go about it and professionals should apply it, particularly in the age of Wikileaks. It is perfectly possible to make your meaning clear without causing massive embarrassment if it ends up in the wrong hands, it just requires a bit of care and thought.

By contrast, Darroch seems to have reverted to highly subjective and emotive adjectives such as 'inept' and 'chaotic' without giving any meaningful context which would allow the reader both to evaluate his assessment and consider the appropriate action. Such descriptions are dangerously loaded and vague to the point of utter uselessness for practical policy development. That's part of the reason I believe his views were clouded by his politics - the mistake in question is not that of a dispassionate observer and suggests a variation of the old saying: "Speak in anger and you'll make the best speech you'll ever regret".

For whatever reason, Darroch made a rookie error, unforgivable for someone in his position, and he had to go, hence he himself took the initiative and resigned. The idea that this is somehow kow towing to Trump is simply hysterical nonsense, as is the suggestion that it is on a par with doing the bidding of Putin, Khamenei, Kim and Xi, unless you somehow believe that they collectively represent our most important strategic ally.


Darrochs mails are nothing but rants.
They could be condensed into one liners…

'Trump's a c**t, I hate him! I hate him!'
 
Apologies if this is being discussed in another thread but I can’t find it.

HM Ambassador to the US has criticised the Trump Whitehouse in confidential memos that have been leaked causing a predictable spat.

Leaving aside that whilst we need diplomats to be truthful it was perhaps unwise to be quite so undiplomatic one cant help wondering who leaked it and why.

I t was obviously going to cause problems. Was it a disgruntled civil servant (or minister) who is anti-Trump or anti-BREXIT, hacked by a foreign power or just greed.

Trump says US will no longer deal with UK ambassador
The leak will be a presidential directive from the Oval Office for some favoured journo to receive the scoop.
 
Darrochs mails are nothing but rants.
They could be condensed into one liners…

'Trump's a c**t, I hate him! I hate him!'
Did you actually read them, they also included helpful tips on how to manipulate him which Boris seems to have taken on board considering the things he said about Trump prior to his election.
 
Did you actually read them, they also included helpful tips on how to manipulate him which Boris seems to have taken on board considering the things he said about Trump prior to his election.
Of course he didn't. This is @meerkatz; @PhotEx; @SOI; the man who (thinks he) knows better than all.

In reality he's an old opinionated civvy sailor, with a ferocious google habit.
 
What do you mean 'Boris folded immediately'? The fate of Darroch wasn't in Johnson's hands, it was a question for PMTM and the FCO. As it was, Darroch decided to resign and took the decision out of everyone's hands. Why should Johnson burn up political capital trying to defend the indefensible?

In terms of writing style, as has been pointed out many times in this thread, there is a professional way to go about it and professionals should apply it, particularly in the age of Wikileaks. It is perfectly possible to make your meaning clear without causing massive embarrassment if it ends up in the wrong hands, it just requires a bit of care and thought.

By contrast, Darroch seems to have reverted to highly subjective and emotive adjectives such as 'inept' and 'chaotic' without giving any meaningful context which would allow the reader both to evaluate his assessment and consider the appropriate action. Such descriptions are dangerously loaded and vague to the point of utter uselessness for practical policy development. That's part of the reason I believe his views were clouded by his politics - the mistake in question is not that of a dispassionate observer and suggests a variation of the old saying: "Speak in anger and you'll make the best speech you'll ever regret".

For whatever reason, Darroch made a rookie error, unforgivable for someone in his position, and he had to go, hence he himself took the initiative and resigned. The idea that this is somehow kow towing to Trump is simply hysterical nonsense, as is the suggestion that it is on a par with doing the bidding of Putin, Khamenei, Kim and Xi, unless you somehow believe that they collectively represent our most important strategic ally.
Other phrases he could have used " volatile " " lacking depth of experience " "requiring a clearer direction " come readily to mind .
Anyway , he's yesterday's man , and I won't be buying his book
 
Most definitely - SECRET as a minimum probably and therefore sent over a SECRET system. Which means that in order for it to be leaked to someone outside of the FO someone will have had to have printed it off first, which implies intent. Bet they're sweating now; and rightly so.
OFFICIAL-SENSITIVE apparently

Sir Kim Darroch's diplomatic memos 'leaked in revenge for alleged failure to promote pro-Brexit Britain'
"The correspondence - marked ‘official sensitive’ - was leaked to Ms Oakeshott via a third party. "
 
If the US Ambassador to the Court of St. James's were any sort of a Gentleman, he would immediately leak his own assessment of the UK Government, including his views on the current and likely forthcoming Prime Ministers. This way we could have the dispute about the kind of language used in such missives resolved, while, no doubt, being highly entertained.
 

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