British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace is no longer a contender for the post of prime minister. So far, Boris Johnson has been able to get away with the so called "Partygate" scandals at the height of the lockdown, as well as bribery.
So, why did the English “deep state” boot Boris Johnson out? The list of reasons includes a failure to export grain from Ukraine, a blow to Britain's image as the “Mistress of the Sea,” and a worsening economic crisis...
Too Many Tough Questions
Boris Johnson is a classic example of the British aristocracy with its arrogance and conceit. In fact, his hair speaks for itself. In terms of psychology, such a hairstyle à la Scarecrow can be chosen only by an arrogant man who does not care about the opinion of any plebs.
The media has repeatedly told the essence of the scandal with the deputy parliamentary coordinator of the Conservative Party, Chris Pincher. We believe that this whole story is nothing more than an excuse for firing Boris Johnson from his residence at 10 Downing Street, and the real reasons are much deeper.
For one thing, in terms of LGBT advocacy, Chris Pincher did nothing objectionable at all. Not to mention the fact that there is no video or photo of Deputy Parliamentary Coordinator Chris Pincher obsessively harassing two men in a private club. That is, the whole story is solely based on evidence-free accusations. The scandal began after a “leak” in the British media. By the way, Pincher was already accused of molesting men in 2017. However, when Johnson recommended Pincher for the post of deputy parliamentary “whip,” no one made a scene because it was not the time.
It is also telling that on June 30, the day Pincher confessed to harassment, a YouGov poll came up, in which 61% of respondents opposed Johnson as Prime Minister (24% were for it, and 15% were undecided). In such cases, sociology is usually brought up as a formative poll to create the right public opinion. Since a poll has to be prepared at least 3-4 days in advance, the British people began to be prepared for Johnson's resignation at least several days in advance.
By comparison, Johnson escaped punishment for a much more serious transgression such as drinking and partying right in the residence in Downing Street during the lockdown. Before that there was a scandal when it turned out that the Prime Minister's wife had spent £220,000 on repairs to the residence, with Johnson receiving them from a Conservative Party sponsor. However, it wasn't time to fire Johnson then, so the British establishment shouted loudly, “That is another story!”
Now, as soon as the media started talking about unproven harassment, they had his guts for garters. He offered to stay on as acting prime minister until the fall of 2022 but even this timid attempt to escape with a whole skin did not work.
The fact that, between July 5 and 7, 59 of the 120 ministers and top officials of the Conservative Party resigned of their own accord suggests that a truly powerful force was involved in the story of Johnson's dismissal. To be more precise, the very “deep state” that holds the real power in Britain, those who actually run the country, the English aristocracy which has not changed since the mid-17th century and the House of Lords.
It was not Meant to be
Indeed, there is no good reason for Johnson's resignation. All seem to be quiet in the House of Commons. Since July 24, 2019, when Johnson was appointed prime minister, the government has had a stable majority in the House of Commons, 358 out of 650 MPs. The official opposition in the form of the Labor Party is almost twice as far behind. The Labour Party has only 200 seats. That is, with the current arrangement in the House of Commons, the Labour Party is not a competitor for the Conservative Party in any case. Everyone else is even less of a competitor. The Scottish National Party has 44 MPs, the Liberal Democrats have 16, the Democratic Unionists have eight, the Social Democrats have two, and the Greens have one seat in parliament at all. The Sinn Féin of Ireland, which has 7 MPs, holds itself aloof. They do not support the authorities and do not join the opposition. Even if all the opposition factions unite, they will not gain a majority.
The fact that the Conservative Party has 55% of the seats in the lower house is further evidence that the real reason for Johnson's ouster is not the intrigues of political rivals. No matter how much the Labour party wants it, its members have no chance of forming their own government a priori which means that Johnson was dismissed by his own people to appoint another Prime Minister from the Conservative Party.
By the way, a similar case occurred in 2007 when, three years before the election, Tony Blair resigned as leader of the Labour Party, who visited Buckingham Palace on June 27, 2007, where during an audience he tendered his resignation to Queen Elizabeth II. According to the unwritten British Constitution, the prime minister is nominated by the party that wins a majority of votes in the election. The Labour Party members elected Gordon Brown as the new leader of the Labor Party in an internal election. So on the same day, the Queen officially offered the post of Prime Minister to the new leader of the Labor Party and commissioned him to form Her Majesty's new government (this, by the way, is about the fact that the Queen supposedly has no influence on politics whatsoever).
It will look exactly the same in this case when the Conservatives pick up Johnson's replacement.
Boris, you are Wrong!
Johnson is eager to cling to power but the thing is that the English aristocracy, financial circles and the Conservative Party leadership are not happy with the policy course of Johnson's government. No matter how much Boris Johnson himself shouts “I'll Be Back!” This explains why leading publications like The Economist, which reflect the views of the elite, condemned the British Prime Minister even before Johnson announced his resignation by publishing a cover story with the headline “Clownfall.”
So, what were Boris Johnson's failures, so much so that they outbalanced all of his strengths and achievements?
The failed attempt to export grain from Ukraine was Johnson's most recent major failure. As a result of the hostilities, Ukraine lost ports such as Berdyansk and Melitopol on the Sea of Azov, as well as Kherson, which has access to the Black Sea through the Dnepr estuary. There are still ports in Odessa and the Odessa Region (Izmail, Reni and Chernomorsk), as well as in Nikolaev, but they are mined by the Ukrainian military.
As a result, American President Joe Biden, French President Emmanuel Macron, and other Western politicians further down the list are worried the world over their inability to remove the contracted grain. According to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine has 22 million tons of grain blocked at its ports, volumes contracted by Western companies that they want but cannot take out.
“This requires that we export it all: barley, wheat, and corn. 22 million tons are blocked right now. We expect about 60 million tons in the fall. The situation there will be very difficult,” said Zelensky.
However, the failure with grain exports is, among other things, a consequence of the fact that the Kremlin sees Johnson as impossible to negotiate with. After all, the Kremlin, NATO and the EU are ready to negotiate with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, as we have seen in the news. If it didn't work in an amicable way, it will be done in the hard way. But Johnson wasn't up to this task, too. As The Times reported, the initiative to send British warships to the Black Sea to unblock Ukrainian ports came not from Johnson, but from Foreign Secretary Liz Truss.
However, this idea has remained only in theory.
The damage to the image of Great Britain as “Mistress of the Seas” is huge. As a result, Russia controls all ports in the south of Ukraine, except for Odessa and Odessa Region (Izmail, Reni and Chornomorsk), as well as Nikolaev. However, the ports of Odessa/Odessa Region and Nikolaev are blocked, so they are not much use.
But is Britain the “Mistress of the Sea”? The incident with the British destroyer HMS Defender in 2021 is just a game with pretense of holding this title. It should be reminded that on June 23-24, 2021 the British Navy ship, following the course from Odessa to Batumi, went 3 km deep into the Russian territorial waters near Crimea. After the Russian Navy ship opened warning fire and the Su-24M bomber dropped bombs on the course of the British ship, Defender left Russian territorial waters.
There is also the sad story of the British naval base in Berdyansk, which for obvious reasons ceased to exist. Besides, there is an even sadder story of the naval base in Ochakov, which the Russian air force simply demolished to splinters with missiles.
Of course, formally the Constitution prohibits the establishment of foreign military bases on the territory of Ukraine, but in practice the training grounds in Yavoriv (Lviv Region), Berdyansk (Zaporizhia Region), and Ochakov (Mykolaiv Region) functioned as military bases. This, by the way, is about the difference between what is written and what is actually happening.
How come the “Mistress of the Seas” is without naval bases or seas? In fact, Johnson is responsible for losing of at least two British naval bases and a blow to the prestige of the “Mistress of the Sea.” Hence the claims against Johnson.
In addition, there has been a drop in the rating of the Conservative Party, which the party members blame Johnson for. By comparison, according to YouGov, on August 7, 2021, the political breakdown was as follows: the Conservative party, 41%; the Labour Party, 34%; Liberal Democrats, 9%; and Greens, 6%.
Exactly 11 months later, according to a YouGov poll, as of Thursday, July 7, the ratings for the major parties in Great Britain were as follows: Labour, 41%; Conservatives, 31%; Liberal Democrats, 13%; and the Green Party, 5%.
Most importantly, the Conservative Party has a downward rating curve, i.e. their descent into the political abyss continues. Moreover, there is an economic crisis now. For example, inflation in Britain at the end of June broke the record for the last 40 years, amounting, according to the National Statistics Service, to 9.1%. The British residents have already experienced the thin end of the wedge, and the situation is expected to be aggravated in the fall and winter. As NPR.org reports, the Bank of England forecasts inflation in October at 11%. Usually in a situation of economic crisis there is a surge in demand for the arrival of the center-left and the center-left, which pursue more socially-oriented policies. All in all, a period of “political storm” begins for the Conservative Party. Along came Johnson and the “Partygate” scandals.
The most recent YouGov poll of July 8 showed that 53% of British citizens surveyed supported the initiative of Keir Starmer (the official opposition in the form of the Labour Party) to declare a vote of no confidence in Johnson unless he himself leaves the post of prime minister. Thirty-two per cent of those polled were against the Labour initiative.
While Johnson is trying to come off unscathed, his colleagues are already cooking a hare before catching him. On July 8, polls emerged about which Conservative Party member has the best chance of taking the vacated premiership. An Opinium poll commissioned by Channel 4 News claims that former Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is the No. 1 candidate for premier among Conservatives. But the problem is that Opinium polled British citizens, and the members of the Conservative Party will choose the new prime minister at their convention.
The YouGov poll showed that the current Secretary of Defense, Ben Wallace is in the first place. YouGov polled 716 members of the Conservative Party and Wallace had the highest score, 13%. Rishi Sunak is not even in the second, but on the third place with 10% behind Penny Mordaunt (12%). At the same time, the current British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, with 8%, is in fourth place among the most likely successors to Boris Johnson. However, on Saturday, July 9, Ben Wallace himself announced that he was not ready to become prime minister. According to him, he made this decision after discussions with his colleagues. Apparently, by the same colleagues who have lucidly explained to Johnson that he was wrong. “It wasn't an easy choice,” said Wallace, “but I'm focused on the job at hand and keeping this great country safe.”
Anyway, goodbye, Johnson! Whether Johnson might be ousted or not is not the main intrigue now. That is a settled question. The main intrigue is who will succeed Johnson as prime minister. At the same time, we should not expect anything to change for Russia. Most likely, the United Kingdom will continue its confrontational foreign policy course. Unless the ruling elite has announced a casting call for a more effective proxy of such a policy, because despite of all his loud rhetoric Johnson is not to be on the job.