D Day royal snafu another blow to Brown

It’s bound to be taken as another sign of Gordon Brown’s lack of political nous that the normally impeccable diplomatic machine got snagged over something as obvious and appropriate as the Queen’s presence at the D Day commemorations on Saturday. It should never have been on to allow Sarzoky to grandstand with Obama at Omaha Beach with only Gordon tagging along. How amazing that it took Obama to sort out an invitation for Charles in the end. To bend over backwards to be fair to Sarkozy, he may have taken his cue from the low level British approach to the event. At first the MOD didn’t want to fork out the money to subsidise the dwindling body of veterans to make what will be for some a last pilgrimage for the 65th anniversary, when huge ceremonies had already been held for the 40th, 50th and 60th. Poor Gordon, it was he who ordered an MOD about turn to support the veterans but as usual he fumbled the follow through. BTW, nobody is talking about the Canadians who deserve to be remembered equally for their great contribution to the invasion.

Former BBC journalist and manager in Belfast, Manchester and London, Editor Spolight; Political Editor BBC NI; Current Affairs Commissioning editor BBC Radio 4; Editor Political and Parliamentary Programmes, BBC Westminster; former London Editor Belfast Telegraph. Hon Senior Research Fellow, The Constitution Unit, Univ Coll. London