by Jerome a Paris
Sun Feb 10th, 2008 at 04:01:01 PM EST
This was just posted on the FT's website, and will certainly be in tomorrow's edition.
Europe needs Blair's leadership and ability
By Denis MacShane
Mr Blair remains the biggest leader Europe has produced since the era of Thatcher, Mitterrand, Kohl and Delors. He speaks French. Americans listen to him. He is still young. The world would respect an EU whose titular head was Tony Blair. Whether he wants to submit himself to the dreary bargaining needed to get anything done in Brussels is another question. When he and I entered the bunker-like office block housing the European Council in Brussels, Mr Blair groaned and visibly wilted at the hours of numbing talks that lay ahead to move Europe forward.
Yet he was better than most at making the EU do things it needed to do. Will he want five years of hard EU grind again? Having created the post with its challenging title - president of Europe - the task of finding someone to do the job is far from easy.
This sounds like a "Europe does not deserve someone so great as Blair" excuse-laying for when Blair does not get promoted.
The world would respect an EU whose titular head was Tony Blair? Groan. What world? That of the English-speaking millionaires, the only one that seems to deseve mention these days?