The Spectator‘s editorial ‘Bravo Boris’ (11 August) suggests that the treatment meted out to Boris Johnson by the Prime Minister and the party chairman makes a leadership challenge more likely. That is correct. This duo have demonstrated a breathtaking lack of political sophistication. Not only have they promoted Boris Johnson’s chances of the leadership, but they have also diverted the media spotlight from the Labour party’s very real anti-Semitism to a fictitious Tory party Islamophobia.
Mr Johnson plainly argues a position that is more liberal than those of many European governments, including those of Denmark, France, Belgium and Germany. Despite this, the Prime Minister and the party chairman have allowed the left-wing press and the Labour party the opportunity to conflate Boris’s — perhaps rude, but certainly not hateful — remark about burkas with the most ugly prejudice to be aired by a group of British politicians since Oswald Mosley and his British Union of Fascists marched through London.
David Soskin was an advisor to John Major. His letter appears in this week’s Spectator