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The William Hague-John Kerry press conference

By Bronwen Maddox  

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office ought to iron the American flag it brings out for such events. The UK one too, while it’s at it. The crumpled state of the draped banners behind William Hague and John Kerry as they climbed onto the podium (half an hour after the advertised kick-off) was a symbol of the state of the transatlantic relationship a week and a bit after the Commons declared that Britain was not going to join the US in any Syrian conflict.

They did deny that; the relationship was both “special and essential”, said the Secretary of State. They…

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