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Monday, November 02, 2009

For Tony Blair, it was always about the money

(Mail Online) -- Winston Churchill was friendly with rich men but never became wealthy himself. French President Charles de Gaulle retired to his house in northern France no richer than the day he came into politics. So how has Tony Blair been able to turn himself into a multimillionaire in two years?

Blair was reported yesterday to have been in talks with Tesco about helping the superstore establish itself in the Middle East, where he enjoys the official status of peace envoy while also pursuing private business interests. We are told he has made £15million since he stepped down as Prime Minister in 2007, although this might be a conservative estimate. Certainly, he is the first modern-day premier to become seriously rich after leaving office. At this rate, he could become a billionaire.

What is the source of his wealth? As a former PM, his knowledge and contacts are useful to big business. He has direct access to foreign leaders and can lobby them on behalf of private companies. He is paid £2million a year by the American bankers JP Morgan for part-time lobbying...

Would Blair have been snapped up quite so quickly by J P Morgan if, instead of becoming a hero to Americans for supporting Bush, he'd declined to support the invasion of Iraq? What if he'd refused, as Labour premier Harold Wilson did when President Lyndon B. Johnson asked us in the Sixties to join America in Vietnam?...Cont'd...LINK

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