Monday, December 31, 2001
Bennett's Petard

I've been directed (by Iain Murray) to the indefatigable Jim Bennett's latest "Anglosphere" column in which he praises web logs. Saith Mr Bennett:

This pan-Anglosphere aspect to blogspace has permitted a much richer, closer and more critical examination of precisely who is saying what. The typical chattering class anti-Americanism of, say, the Guardian or The Nation is raked through point by point and torn to shreds within hours of publication.

All well and good, but in the previous sentence he says:

For every link to, say, the English edition of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, there are hundreds to the London Evening Telegraph or the Times.

As any Londoner would be able to tell their fellow Anglospheracist Mr Bennett, there is a London Evening Standard (very rarely with London appended) and a Daily Telegraph (only called the London Telegraph outside the UK), but no London Evening Telegraph.

Sorry, I just could not resist.

Pakistan and India, yet again

My developing obsession with the India - Pakistan stand off is getting me to wonder what the Anglosphere angle is. The Anglosphere is the idea that Britain and America share so much that we should forget strategic interests and look at shared cultural references as the basis for foreign policy or as Mr Bennett says "that the English-speaking nations of the globe constitute a community possessing a natural basis for cooperation on a wide range of issues". It is, as I will be the first to admit, the hot new foreign policy idea on the right in Britain rather than the "crackpot realism" that I wail on about.

Any way, both India and Pakistan have some claim to be within the Anglosphere. After all English is their de facto national language, more then Punjabi or Hindi. They both have a considerable amount of British civic infrastructure and through their substantial emigre communities they have strong living links with many of the "White Commonwealth" (plus the US) that forms the core of the Anglosphere.

So if culture beats geography in national interest, should we back India or Pakistan; or are neither fully within the Anglosphere?


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