Commenting on the demise of the New Labour project, from the re-election of Tony Blair in 2001 to the ultimate foreign policy disasters of Afghanistan and Iraq, he gives other prescient accounts of the government's by-passing of Cabinet, parliament, and the party, of the "war on terror", the debate about Islam, globalisation, and the changes in British society.
Although he is no longer in power or in parliament, Tony Benn remains a figure of enormous respect whose direct views, honestly expressed, have often awakened the national conscience. His latest diaries, human and challenging in turn, are enthralling.
©Tony Benn; (P)Random House
Shortlisted for the Channel 4 Political Book Award, 2007.
"Now in his eighties, Benn calls these seven years since he left Parliament 'a blaze of autumn sunshine.' Driven by his passion for debate and justice, he continues to travel the country promoting his strongly held and compassionate views. His honest interview with Saddam in Bagdhad; his searing analysis of the Iraq debacle (Blair's comment on paying the blood price was 'tribal'); his many friendships (including with Bill Clinton who, he muses, is young enough to be his son); he tells all with a warm spontaneity that makes the listener feel like a special guest." (Observer)
Tony Benn takes his time beyond the House of Commons to campaign for peace, engage the public, and to rediscover the big themes and challenges of our age. He is at all times human, witty and focussed on justice. It is also the first time his family and friendships are discussed in detail, which is heartwarming. We also learn of his love of Pizza.
Yes I would. Because it is honest, and there is something existential about it.
His voice is great. And also you can feel the passion for humanity.
Yes, but I would recommend that you savour it.
BUY BUY BUY
Tony Benn is one of the greatest politicians of our time and his diaries reflect the man from a political, social and personal perspective. A moving, often funny insight into his life in politics. One of the great parliamentarians and chronicler of recent historical and political events, simply a joy to listen to.
Expecting an insightful view into left-wing politics post-New Labour 1997 and the diaries include details of an easter egg hunt, his cups of tea and everything else that is so descriptive and just "nice". Not what I expected. Certainly the Campbell diaries were much more analytical.
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