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End of the affair

War in Iraq has exposed the"special relationship" as a liability that has damaged British interests in Europe and the Muslim world. Inside the British establishment the special relationship is now supported only by prime ministers, submariners and code breakers. We must become just good friends

Whatever other casualties the Iraq war produces, whatever difficulties and opportunities appear in the aftermath, one thing is clear. Even in victory the principles on which British foreign policy have been based since Suez are now amongst the walking wounded.

Tony Blair and his predecessors—with the exception of Edward Heath—have often told us that the most important of these principles is to preserve Britain’s unique “special relationship” with America. American technical and logistic support for our highly competent military and intelligence agencies gives us a special weight in Nato. Our influence in Washington enables us to bridge the gap between…

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