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Commentary Last Updated: Jul 21st, 2006 - 00:44:26

Bush-Blair exchange: more �honey sweet� curiosities
By Larry Chin
Online Journal Associate Editor

Jul 21, 2006, 00:37

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This is a follow-up to "Were plans for a Middle East war escalation exposed in Bush-Blair exchange?" (7/19/06), spurred by the input of Online Journal reader Ann Kroeber (thank you, Ms. Kroeber).

Ms. Kroeber correctly pointed out that more than one transcript of the Bush/Blair recording at G8 has been published, and cited the version from the BBC. I noted when the story broke, and suggested in my article, that inaccurate and conflicting versions are out there (perhaps by design). I worked off the Washington Post version, which seemed to be more complete than most.

That said, the BBC version does contain this curious passage, which has been blacked out of many US versions. It is audible on broadcasted versions that are out there. It goes as follows:

Blair: Look -- what does he think? He thinks if Lebanon turns out fine. If you get a solution in Israel and Palestine, Iraq goes in the right way.

Bush: Yeah, yeah, he is sweet.

Blair: He is honey.

Two issues:

  1. Who is the �he� that Bush calls �sweet,� and Blair calls �honey�? It came in the portion of the exchange after Blair asks, �Who? Syria?� and Bush responds, �Right.� Based on the context, I conclude that the �sweet honey� is Syrian president Bashar Assad. Or are they talking about someone else entirely? Perhaps Kofi Annan? Someone else?

    And how is this third party �sweet honey�? On a policy level, or a personal level?

  2. The passage that the BBC published as �If you get a solution in Israel and Palestine, Iraq goes in the right way� is �If we get a solution in Israel and Palestine, Iraq goes in the right way, he�s [inaudible]� in the Washington Post. The �honey� line by Blair is missing altogether in the Post version. Why?

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