19 December, 2006

Cash for honours: promotion and peace.

John Yates, the intrepid Scotland Yard detective in charge of the cash for honours investigation has been formally promoted from Deputy Assistant Commissioner to Assistant Commissioner. According to the BBC , he is now officially number 3 honcho at the Yard. Given that, these days, the top man, Ian Blair, seems to spend more time spouting sociological drivel than actually policing anything, arguably that makes AC Yates Britain's second most senior operational copper.

I can find no comment from the Prime Minister but the Daily Telegraph points out that Yates' appointment would have required the support of the Home Secretary. Meanwhile, the same link says, in the cash for honours nonsense, a peace of a sorts has come to the Middle East:

Mr Blair yesterday showered praise on Lord Levy, Labour's chief fund-raiser and his Middle East go-between, after a weekend of damaging speculation of a rift over the cash for honours affair.

Mr Blair said Lord Levy, who accompanied him to Ramallah for talks with Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the Palestinian authority, had performed "an excellent job" and been "immensely helpful" in his role as Middle East envoy.

Acknowledging the compliment, Lord Levy nodded in gratitude.

But in a sign that he has become a more controversial figure, he was placed in the second row of the press conference behind other government officials. During a trip to the Middle East in September, he sat prominently next to Jonathan Powell, the Prime Minister's chief of staff, in the front row.
You're not my friend any more, I don't want to sit with you. God help us. I wonder what the Palestinian terrorists thought of it all.

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