Hugely exciting Ten O Clock News last night on the Arab Spring – or ‘Arab Uprising’ as the BBC now prefers to call it, the word Spring usually being associated with nice things like lambs and daffodils. They had George Alligator in Egypt and Lyse Doucet in Tunisia and some other bloke somewhere else. I like Lyse Doucet, she’s less credulous than most.
George Alligator, in a piece which was largely a string of clichés, said that Egypt’s democracy was ‘a work in progress’, at which point I fell off the sofa in hysteria.
Still at least they have now all come around to the view that the Arab Spring – oops ‘Uprising’ was, as most of us said at the time, bloody calamitous; far, far worse for the people of those benighted countries and worse, in the end, for us too. Did they really think it would end in nice Jeffersonian democrats empowering women and instituting a nice left-liberal secular democracy? I mean, I know The Guardian did, so I suppose it’s probable the BBC did too. Do you remember those broadcasts from a year or so back? Unquestioning of the motives of the rebels, uninterested in the real level of support they had across the country, just gung-ho for the cause. Well, now –look, you mugs.
Former Defence Secretary Liam Fox writes about the Arab Spring – with a rather similar conclusion – in the new Christmas double issue of The Spectator. To read that issue for free, download a trial for Kindle, iPad or iPhone by clicking here.