Monday, 7 March 2011

Bond Practice Run Contingency: Obreption

By our Security Staff

Over the weekend, it emerged that a secret diplomatic mission with an escort of 'special forces' tough guys got themselves ‘arrested’ by the eastern Libyan provisional authority.  According to diplomatic sources there was a misunderstanding, but there has been much laughing by the navy and a lot of schadenfreude about this ‘practice’ run in preparation for the real thing.  There were many non-comments and, being the weekend, there was a lack of full-time journalism, so it took a while to realise that the brave boys of the 'special forces' had wandered into a radio set in Birmingham based on that well-known soap opera The Archers. 

This story combined with a royal story about Prince Andrew, Duke of York, took the heat off Nick Clegg -  for now.    In parliament (House of Commons), William Hague (Foreign Secretary) made his statement and his shadow, Douglas Alexander, replied.  This can all be heard on BBC Parliament reports, though Douglas Alexander had written a piece for the Guardian on Sunday  March 6th.  

There were some interesting posts on this blog, though sadly mine was removed and I am now subject to pre-moderation.  They seem to be quite strict at the Guardian, and it may be that the middle class liberals found me a bit too waspish for a lunch time bit of Realpolitik.  The following has been self-censored, though I did treat it quite seriously – or so I thought.

“Douglas Alexander’s post has a tinge of Edward VIII in that ‘something must be done’.  In the case of the coalition government, they simply didn’t have a clue on what had to be done.  When the Bahrain uprising was at its peak, I mentioned that Bahrain was a Sunday school picnic compared with what could happen in the eastern province of Saudi Arabia.  While most people comment on the oil, we tend to forget the cities, the water supplies, the power stations, the British expats (tax payers or not), the Commonwealth expats from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, let alone US and European expats.  If Libya proved to be a disaster for British foreign policy, I would like to know who is dreaming up contingency plans for the Saudi ‘event’.  The Shia minority are in the eastern province and after some trouble in the late 1980s with security in Jubail, they were severely restricted from access to high tech jobs.   I know it’s not Mr Alexander’s job to handle this now, but I am unconvinced concerning noises coming from Washington and London.  This sets the ‘fuel stabiliser’ in context – a gimmick from Osborne.  Alan Duncan, who does understand oil, probably has a better view of it:  £2 a litre and up!”

Actually, nothing was censored and I remain mystified as to what was offensive about my comment.  It was hardly a national security issue.  It merely highlighted what had been said concerning the 2005 London bombings: “a contingency plan is only as good as the last time it was exercised.”  

Any further study should refer to that instructive film used for training purposes only – i.e. for the camel – starring Phil Silvers and Kenneth Williams - Carry on Follow that Camel.  



  1. I can see why your comment was pulled - fancy trying to start an uprising in Saudi! Whatever next will obreption think up for the news hungry media?

  2. Guru ji, do you have any suitable pictures of muscular Hindutva? I hear that a Bollywood Moghul is looking for a synchrotism 3D movie loosely based in the Deccan with a Britisher and Lord Ram types. The concept is a bit of Slum Dog, a bit of Brokeback Mountain and a bit of Carry on Up the Khyber. Please help us with the casting.

    Anon from Bangalore

  3. Dear Obreption

    Seeing that it is Ash Wednesday, don't you have a story for us about all these Anglicans coming back to Mother Church - or failing that, a good story about an ash-ram. You realise that your many handed goddess of last month was really Saraswati. Are you sending us subliminal messages? I am sending you a story from the Chronicle here in Houston. The Guru Prakashanand SARASWATI appears to have vaporised!