Mark Andrews on Saturday: Scoffing Major, how to end the US stand-off, and a bad call on Prince Harry

Read the latest column from Mark Andrews.

Prince Harry was not invited to lay a wreath at the cenotaph this year
Prince Harry was not invited to lay a wreath at the cenotaph this year

Saw a chap at the supermarket struggling to carry 48 toilet rolls to the checkout. I didn't see what food he had in his basket, but let's just say I'm glad I'm not eating it.

* * *

Confession time: For a brief moment, about 10 years ago, I thought it was time to cut Sir John Major a bit of slack.

OK, I'm better now, and please accept my apologies.

The thing was, when the economy was tanking in a sea of debt, and memories of Maastricht, the ERM and Black Wednesday began to fade, there was actually a short window when he began to seem a benign, if rather dull, figure.

And maybe, if he had half a brain and kept his tongue still, that is how he would be perceived today. Boring, forgettable, but no worse than the parade of chancers from all sides we have had since.

Sadly, though, the silly old duffer doesn't seem able to keep his mouth shut. And every time he opens it, he reminds us how bad he actually was.

Sir John Major says Britain is no longer a Great Power

This week's pearl of wisdom is that he no longer regards Britain as a Great Power, and that we never will be again.

Well, there is no official definition of what constitutes a 'Great Power', but if it is acknowledged that the US is the world's only remaining 'superpower', then in footballing terminology the Great Powers are the ones that make up the European places. So given the UK is ranked fifth in the US World Power rankings, has the sixth biggest economy in the world, is the eighth largest military power, the fourth largest nuclear power, a member of the G7, and holds one of the five permanent seats on the UN security council, I would have thought we're in with a shout.

But if we really have fallen as low in the world rankings as Sir John believes, doesn't the man who led this country for seven years bear some responsibility for that decline?

* * *

Meanwhile, across the pond, there's little sign of unity breaking out in the fall-out from the US presidential election, even after Joe Biden was declared president-elect.

It's strange really, because you couldn't imagine a narrow poll victory causing such acrimony over here, could you? What is surprising, though, is that none of our more militant anti-Brexiteers have offered their preferred solution to the stand off. They must want a 'confirmatory vote', surely?

* * *

Yes, Prince Harry has become annoying since he started spouting woke drivel following his marriage to Meghan. But the decision to ban him from laying a wreath at the Remembrance Sunday was mean-spirited and petty.

It's also hypocritical when Prince Edward, who dropped out of the Royal Marines after just four months' training, turns out every year dressed in full military regalia.

* * *

Kate Bingham, the PM's 'vaccine czar', is in a bit of hot water after allegedly spending £500,000 of taxpayers' money on public relations, including a payment to Dominic Cummings' father-in-law. Jabs for the boys?

Most Read

Most Read

Top Stories

More from the Express & Star

UK & International News