As the Foreign Secretary laughs at his own “clear the dead bodies in Libya” quips, the rest of the world looks on, horrifiedby Steve Bloomfield / October 4, 2017 / Leave a comment
Every speaker at Conservative party conference has a line about Venezuela. It doesn’t seem to matter that the attack on Jeremy Corbyn doesn’t work—it is as if they are under contractual obligation. So, of course, Boris Johnson had a line of his own. And, of course he had a punchline at the end. And, of course—of course—it was a laboured attempt at mixing the word ‘crackers’ with the capital of Venezuela that everyone could see coming a mile off. But despite all that, the conference hall laughed. He delivered it well. After all, Boris is funny. Not “performing at Edinburgh” funny, but at the very least “great fun in the pub” funny, which—for a politician—is pretty rare. Humour, among other less amusing traits, has got the foreign secretary where he is today. For most of his career, comedy has been an enormous help. Not any more, though.
The signs were there that Johnson’s comedy stock was falling. Just last month it was revealed that he had astonished diplomats during a meeting on the humanitarian crisis in Yemen by saying “With friends like these, who needs Yemenis?”