I note in today’s Guardian an article claiming that the UK government is trying to undermine the BAE bribes inquiry being held by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. This reminded me of the key role played by Lord Goldsmith – UK Attorney General - in several crucial issues. Firstly there was the advice on the legality of the Iraq war for which he had to exhume the body of the only lawyer who had supported the war. This was followed by the bribes inquiry which Lord Goldsmith halted on the grounds of national interest and, coming up soon, the cash for honours inquiry. What will his advice be on cash for honours?
Below I append the key telephone conversation between Tony Blair (TB) and Lord Goldsmith (LG) during which cash-for–honours was discussed.
TB: Hi, Pete. It’s Tone. How are you? Tell you what it is, Pete? You know this cash-for-honours thing. My best friends in No. 10 are going to be charged. Can’t have it. Think what that will do to my reputation.
LG: Rock bottom already, Prime Minister. Won’t change a thing.
TB: Don’t joke, Pete. There’s nothing in it. It’s a stitch up. That bastard Brown’s behind it. He can’t stand the success I’ve had; can’t stand my being the nearest thing to God. Anyway Pete, to business. I need your help. None of this is true. Everything has been planted but it’s gone so far now that the CPS are bound to prosecute my friends. I can’t have that, Pete. These friends, if they come to court I’ll be embarrassed. I can’t allow these trumped up charges to affect my legacy.
LG: I understand exactly, Prime Minister. I’ll do my duty on behalf of your interest - er sorry the national interest. You can count on me. I’ve done this before and may I say that you have the best legal nose I’ve ever come across. Whatever you thought was in the national interest has been legal. Amazing!!!
TB: Great. I knew I could count on you but you do remember these photos I mentioned before about you and ….. at that party …….
LG: How could I forget, Prime Minister. Best sex I’ve ever had!
TB: Pity if your lovely wife found them.
LG: Yes, yes. My lovely wife. No need Prime Minister. No worry. Consider it done.
TB: I knew you’d see it my way. Oh, before you go, just one more thing. You know I was pushing my wee boy Dave to stand against the big bastard next door. No balls, Pete. He’s got no balls. We need to do something, anything to get him to stand. Any ideas?
LG: There’s one way. That photograph of me and ….. Well imagine if it was touched up professionally so that it was David and not me. Show it to him. He’ll do the right thing. Before you can say “Your marriage, Dave. Such a shame.” He’ll have declared himself a candidate.
TB: You’re brilliant, Pete. I can see why I planted you in this role. Remember now. No charges, national interest, stitch up……
LG: Prime Minister could you destroy the photo of me? Prime Minister, are you there? Prime Minister? PRIME MINISTER.!!