One of the sites I most visit is ‘Downing Street Says‘, an unofficial site recording the official opinions of Downing Street and, I assume, The Prime Minister. One of the real benefits of reading the transcripts of the briefings rather than a journalist’s interpretation is seeing how the Prime Minister’s Official Spokesman tries not to express opinions. It’s no wonder people have a disregard for the political process in the country when you read,
Asked to explain why the Prime Minister was willing to express a view about the pictures relating to alleged US mistreatment of Iraqi prisoners when their investigations had not yet concluded either, the PMS pointed out that the Government’s view had been set out very clearly by General Sir Mike Jackson last Friday night when the pictures had first emerged. [source]
What I think most right-thinking people won’t understand (and I am sure the civil servants can explain it away very well) is why disgust can not be expressed every time the question is asked. If the British pictures are real then the such treatment should be strongly condemned. If the pictures are fake then the actions of those who made them should be discussed in the same terms. Why do they have to hide behind the diplomatic speak?
Really, there doesn’t seem to me much point in having a ‘Big Conversation‘ with the people if you don’t understand what one half of the room is saying.