Jack Straw believes that he cannot release the Cabinet records of why Britain went to war with Iraq, because it would cause too much "damage" to democracy.
We can't have the plebs knowing too much, you know. It might frighten the horses.
Ha! Because in a shock leak, Maturin Towers has obtained the said documents. Rather surprisingly, the main decisions were taken in a small annexe just off the main Cabinet office, rather than in the Cabinet office itself. Here is the transcript:
CIA: Mr Blair, we need you to support our invasion of Iraq to give us political cover.BTW, if I disappear in the next few days, you'll know why.
Blair: What's in it for me?
CIA: When the war's over, we'll make sure you get paid off appropriately.
Blair: How much?
CIA: Will £30 million do?
Blair: But how are you going to pay me, without arousing all sorts of terrible repercussions to me personally?
CIA: Here's the deal. When you retire from the Presidency...
CIA: ...Whatever. When you retire, we've got a few front organisations over here in the States who can stump up the money as laundered fees for speaking, payable over about five years. Later on, we can wind that down and just get a few world bodies to hire you on as a 'roving ambassador' or some such rubbish, until you want to stop working as our agent, no questions asked.
Blair: Nice one.
CIA: Do we have a deal?
Blair: Au certainment, monsieur.
CIA: Aren't you worried about the total fabrication involved here?
Blair: Any beardies cross me, Pilgrim, and I'll get MI5 to 'suicide' them.
CIA: What about the hundreds of inevitable British casualties in your armed forces?
Blair: They all knew what they were getting into when they took the Queen's shilling. Sod 'em.
CIA: You know Mr Blair, you really are a lot different in the flesh than you are on the boob tube.
Blair: Thank you.
CIA: Don't mention it. Can I get up off the sofa now?
Blair: Yes, I'll go through and tell the Cabinet what they've decided.
CIA: Excellent. The cheque's in the post.
Blair: (standing)...I do worry about one thing, though.
CIA: What's that?
Blair: Well, I've just sold out a thousand years of British independence for thousands of filthy silver coins. Will Jesus ever forgive me?
CIA: You think you're the first British President we've bought off like this?
Blair: Well, aren't I?
CIA: You're also either a lot stupider than you appear on the boob tube, Mr President, or you're a hell of an actor.
Blair: Thank you again.
CIA: For being stupid or for being an actor?
Blair: Whatever. I'll just convert to Catholicism after I give up the Presidency. That should wash my hands clean.
CIA: There you go. You really are one helluva guy, Mr President.
Blair: You better believe it, Pilgrim.