Heseltine: There is no special US-UK relationship
The former UK Defence Secretary and Deputy Prime Minister was speaking on BBC1's Question Time.
Heseltine's view is an increasingly popular view. I readily agree that the UK-US relationship is not perfect but it is special. Our nation's fight together. We are the leading investors in each other's countries. We share a language and so much culture. Our intelligence services are closer than any in the world. Britain remains a power that punches above its weight and that makes Britain matter to America.
I was honoured to hear General David Petraeus speak to Policy Exchange recently. He ended his speech with a wonderful tribute to Britain and its armed forces:
"As I close, I should note that for an American military officer, particularly for one who’s an amateur military historian, visiting London is always a bit of pilgrimage. Many US military traditions have some British precursor, and that shared heritage forms part of the special relationship that we have long celebrated. Last year I had the good fortune to recall an important moment in that relationship when I visited the World War II Cabinet War Rooms with the great General Sir Mike Jackson. During our tour Jacko and I were graciously permitted access to the personal map and planning rooms used by Prime Minister Churchill, and as we read some of Churchill’s hand-written notes, we were transported back to that earlier era of extraordinary US-UK cooperation, and we were once again impressed by the extraordinary accomplishments of your country. It was another one of those times in fact when I’ve been tempted to agree with Cecil Rhodes’ wonderful observation that being an Englishman is the greatest prize in the lottery of life.
Well if Cecil Rhodes is correct, and I’m inclined to think that he is, then the second greatest prize in the lottery of life must be to be a friend of an Englishman. And based on that, the more than 230,000 men and women in uniform in the Central Command Area of Responsibility who work with your country’s finest on a daily basis are very lucky indeed, as am I.
Thank you very much."
Let us not forget that Heseltine's agenda is motivated primarily by a desire to immerse Britain inside Europe. His knocking of America is part of that ambition.