Iran-the Welsh connection
Huttonian was up well before the sparrows to be interviewed on Good Morning Wales-BBC Wales, a programme which kicks off at the excruciatingly early hour of 0600. Top of the news as the Iranian 'hostage' drama is the big story in the Principality at the moment as three of the sailors/marines are from there and there is enormous public interest on their predicament. It is sobering for any 'expert' or commentator to realise that at least three families are listening with the keenest interest and in a high state of anxiety to every word that is said. There is the temptation therefore to strike a very optimistic note, focusing purely on the positive and to imply that their 'loved ones' ( ugh I hate that expression) will be home safe and well-and soon. Thankfully I could be reasonably hopeful given the apparent wish by both parties to cool the rhetoric and to restrict the argument to one issue-the return of the detainees. Also Mr Blair's statement that direct talks are to be underway soon is a good omen for a reasonably speedy resolution.
But given the erratic nature of Iranian politics and the difficulty of determining whom exactly in Tehran is calling the shots there is a lot of scope for a pear shaped prognosis. Much will depend on the Iranian presidents press conference today as Mr Ahmadinejad (try saying that through a mouth full of Meusli) has the habit of letting it all hang out in front of the microphone (rhetorically speaking) and saying something provocative that will need a sharp response from Mr B-and worse another unhelpful supportive comment from George W Bush-with friends like that.....
If there is one thing that GWB does well is raising international tensions with a few well chosen remarks at awkward moments.
So please shut it.
For all our sakes