Our man in the Middle East is once again in the limelight. (He is of course not our man; it remains to be seen whether he is his own man.) He remains though, a favourite subject, touching in us perhaps the same sort of horror-admiration we might experience at the antics of some dangerous animal. The Rex Features photograph the Guardian have gone with (shown here on the right) is a good one, showing a certain telltale crystalline hardness of the left eye. We will, I suspect, be seeing rather more of that.
But let us not become mesmerised just yet.
The Guardian article is officially about the resignation of one Mark Labovitch from Blair’s Firerush Ventures, an organisation which “gives its address as a PO box in West London” and was first mentioned by the Guardian as a source of mystery in 2009. Far from being the sort of earnestly transparent, hand on heart, God-fearing business vehicle one might well expect from the man that did the right thing on Afghanistan and Iraq and Libya and is apparently tired of apologising for simply doing what he felt was right, Firerush, like Windrush, its parallel vehicle, is like something out of a William Gibson novel.
Is this not how it goes these days? You do your bit in politics and the prize is, at top level, a multi-million pound business empire like Al Bla’ira’s, complete with regular appearances at the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi, “one of the most expensive resorts in the world.” (At lower level, you’re still working the expenses and second homes stuff like former Al Bla’ira girl turned women’s rights campaigner, the Rt. Hon. Harriet Harman MP.) It really is a simple matter of typing names into Google and it’s all there. Loads and loads of it. So much so that one might indeed think, well, so what? It’s the way it goes these days.
We might cough, if not exactly choke, chewing over news of Al Bla’ira’s lucrative deal with the Israelis, allowing Kuwaiti mobile phone company Wataniya to launch a network in Gaza. We might remember, as we explore its curious flavour, that someone called Tony Blair was once the British Prime Minister who did the right thing invading Iraq, was advised on Middle Eastern affairs by the colourful, multiply arrested Lord Levy, went on to become Middle East Peace Envoy and later, spokesperson for the Quartet appointed to oversee diplomatic relations in the Middle East. We might wonder why the Middle East Peace Envoy would say, “You cannot rule out the use of military force against Iran if they continue to develop nuclear weapons.” Or why the Quartet Representative would condemn as ‘deeply confrontational’ the Palestinian request of the United Nations to recognise an independent Palestinian state. You might, as the curious flavour turns rankling and foul, start to wonder if, while it is quite simply and frankly how it goes these days, you’re just gonna swallow it anyway.
This is where it gets interesting
Blair was elected into power by popular vote. In that distant era, people genuinely believed in him. Extraordinarily, people continue to believe in him – and Brown and Harman and Cameron and even Mandelson – to this day. I don’t believe (in) Tony Blair.
But I do believe in Al Bla’ira. Here is a baseless (“PO Box in West London”) and secret global network, linked by a powerful religion in which it’s followers believe “because they believe it compels them to believe in it.” Here is an organisation evidently opposed to our way of life – “openness, democracy, freedom and the rule of law.”
How do they get away with it?
What is happening now in the world at large is an ordering, a separation of light from dark, of that which ascends from that which descends. This is always happening, has always been happening. If you like, we can avoid any ring of prophecy and the like and say simply say that this separation process is currently particularly noticeable. Ironically, the hallmark of this fundamental separation is its exact opposite – mixing, concealment, masquerade – which is exactly the mission of Al Bla’ira. Here indeed is an organisation of darkness masquerading as the light.
In idle moments when I have other more pressing and probably more boring things to do, I try to imagine what goes on inside the mind of Al Bla’ira’s shadowy leader. Does he really genuinely believe he is doing the right thing? From our point of view he is possessed by dark forces, which keep him from the light, perhaps as a crack addict or paedophile is kept from the light. Or is he fully cognizant of the great damage he is wreaking upon human values in being a Peace Envoy that rattles the sabre? If he is, then is he able to do it because he truly believes there are no consequences? He is in this case literally godless, on a far grander scale but not unlike the unfortunate Reece Donovan, sent down recently for pretending to help the broken-jawed Malaysian student in riots in Barking, East London, while really stealing from him.
Al Bla’ira is playing havoc with our ethics on a far grander scale. Indeed, it is a threat to Our Way of Life. Thus far, its behaviour seems to demon-strate that there are no consequences. Crime pays. And the bigger the crime, the bigger the pay. But they get away with it because, ultimately, we still sort of want them to…
I am making two arguments here.
1. Outer reflecting Inner. It will only be when we each examine our own shadow, our own dark masquerading as light, that this diabolism will cease in the world at large.
2. One ring to rule them all and in the darkness bind them. Al Bla’ira is doing the Devil’s work, which is simply the binding together of That Which Must Descend.
Which is not to say, do nothing. But nor is it for me to say what to do other than, whatever it is, you enquire ruthlessly, brutally, as to whether it is dark masquerading as light.
Assuming, of course, you’d rather go up than down…