May has 'full faith' in UK ambassador who called Trump administration 'inept'

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The government has launched a full-scale inquiry to discover who leaked diplomatic emails from the UK’s Ambassador to the US that described the Trump administration as “inept”. (Subscribe:

In the Commons, MPs said the leak was unpatriotic and the culprit should face criminal sanctions.

Ministers gave their backing to the Ambassador, Sir Kim Darroch, but said they did not share his views about President Trump.

Donald Trump himself said Sir Kim “has not served the UK well”.


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the government's announced a full-scale investigation into how the unvarnished thoughts of Sikkim Derek our man in Washington ended up on the front page of a Sunday newspaper in a series of private messages updating the government here on President Trump sir Kim Derek described the Trump administration as uniquely dysfunctional faction rhythm diplomatically clumsy and inept number-10 insisted to resume visiting re F northward today had full faith in Kim Derek but she has only 15 more days in her job her successor may be influenced by this presidential reaction number ten said it had privately told the White House that the memos did not reflect the government's views and their publication was regrettable the Foreign Secretary echoed that at a press conference of course we've made it clear that I don't share the ambassador's assessment of either the US administration or relations with the US administration but I do defend his right to make that frank assessment and it's very important that our diplomats all over the world continue to be able to do so president Trump meetings to Kim Derick on the state visit last month when MP said he wanted the police to investigate the leak I have today written to the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police to ask that a criminal investigation also be opened into the leak one pro brexit Tory attacked took him down his so-called frankness which should be the issue but his lack of judgment which disqualifies him from his post I regret to have to say that I consider my honorable friends intervention deeply unworthy he is a diplomat of caliber and of integrity nothing in his reporting from the embassy could ever be construed as an attack on the President of the United States all of it war was reporting of the highest quality the government suggested a third country was not suspected of being behind the leak of Kim Garrett's letters home we United Jonathan and Charles Powell the brothers were advised Tony Blair and Margaret Thatcher on foreign policy for this week's politics we're next podcast was the government right to rule out to third countries involvement well it crossed my mind certainly I first thought this was a WikiLeaks type of thing and maybe involving the Russians but if the government said that they probably have reason to think it in which case they may have a pretty good idea of who the leaker is in my experience I don't know whether Jonathan feels the same leaking wire is a complete waste of time because everyone knows but then one can never prove it the whole series attacks on civil servants on the cabinet secretary on the former negotiator on the EU all of a part by Faraj and people from the brexit side who's he'd be keen to get rid of these people and that's what angers about Boris Johnson's plans to hug the Trump administration close now look incompatible with Kim Derrick staying in his job and end results some close to mr. Johnson will be only too pleased to see well joining me now is the chair of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee conservative MP Tom Tegan heart from the House of Commons and with me in the studio the chairman of the brexit Party MEP Richard theis Tom chicken heart first is calling the US president in echt insecure and incompetent the work of a great diplomat you think well reporting on the situation as he finds it without fear or favor not attempting to suck up to a foreign administration and reporting back to the government that sent him and that pays his bills is exactly the work of a diplomat that is half the job the other half of the job is promoting and soft soaping and and attempting to influence the administration that he's dealing with the broad right but reporting honestly is absolutely fundamental if a diplomat doesn't do that frankly there's no point in having them which she ties honest reporting I mean the reality is how can he retain any credibility whatsoever to continue in his job given that is basically humiliated and embarrassed us with our most important trading and security partner I mean I find it astonishing varnished excuse me he accused the president of the United States of being indebted to dodgy Russians he said he could never be seen as being competent that man is not unvarnished reporting that is a subjective judgment based on someone who's clearly it is true what he said quoting what others said that's that's quite different from saying that he had said it he was reporting was gossip at what in Washington around at the time that's what he was reporting and it was gossip around in Washington at the time it may have been false it may have been untrue but it was gossip around in Washington at the time that is correct look the reality is he accused this president that he would never be competent and he's humiliated and embarrassed us in front on the global stage how can you retain his post how come ministers truly say that they've got confidence in him when clearly he's got zero credibility the man should have offered his resignation as soon as this came out don't even hi is he unable to do his job now that Donald Trump has reacted so strongly well first of all I don't think Donald Trump has reacted particularly strongly and secondly after the WikiLeaks incident in 2011 when we read what American diplomats were saying about the UK I think we're in a very good position of saying look we know what diplomats do diplomats report honestly on behalf of their government to their capitals about the situation's they find themselves in and that's not surprising that is after all the job of a diplomat and several of the US diplomats in that period reported extremely rudely about several of the ministers who are still in cabinet today one or two of them are still in cabinet today so you know we took it on the chin knew that this was what diplomats did and recognized that you know that's just life and I'm afraid if you're a grown up country and you all grown up civilization you're used to dealing with free press and free interaction then I'm afraid this is what you should be used to if you want to act like a child of course you can throw a fit and walk away well the reality is you know this is an experienced diplomat who knew that this his emails would be seen by dozens if not hundreds of people when you write an email you've got to think what would this look like if actually it came out and these are not emails these are private communications between an envoy of Her Majesty's Government to her majesty's government that a distributed gossip they'll know these are these are widely throughout the civil service that's not true it is true true that's not true the dip tells which are the widely distributed ones and not the ones that contain what you think is fallacious this was not this was a first level of security was it taught what was love as the letters that went to the letters that went to the cabinet secretary and that went to the defence actually the foreign secretary others would have been seen by only tens of people maybe five or ten people and the very fact that this is so incredibly unusual tells you how reliable our system used to be and the very fact that this is being so politicized and that our civil services being drawn in in this way into political game playing by cheap politicians is absolutely outrageous it's a complete disgrace it is a disgrace that this man has not offered his resignation given he's embarrassed and humiliated our nation you should go have you got an ulterior motive here because Nigel Farage I have absolutely open up to a motive I want an ambassador in Washington promoting a post brexit Britain helping to negotiate a free trade deal this ambassador this embassy has been not very successful in that my student he goes what we need we I would like to have a business person doing it you know which is what about you well let's see do you like time terror of the brexit party I'll tell you what I think did you I could do a substantially better job than frankly you know Kim Derrick was done in promoting a post bricks had bitten the opportunities in promoting free trade years won't fully failed us and he should go Tom didn't how do you feel about the prospect of Nigel Farage or indeed Richard twice in the embassy in in Washington well I don't think there's much question about that so I don't see any point in commenting on it I think what's much better to focus on is the very fact that we've got a very serious problem in a culture of leaking in our country at the moment we've had two major leaks in the last year and frankly both of them are completely unacceptable we need to get the police involved now as a police inquiry Tom going to help promoting a post brexit Britain with our most important and tracking and security part that is much more important than an inquiry into a few cables and I think I think what's incredibly important is not the relationship or the potential damage to the relationship with the United States which as we've seen is very deep and very strong but much more important than that is the ability of British envoy's whether they be civilian or military to know that the communications they have with Her Majesty's Government are treated in the way that they should because if they do not communicate openly freely and frankly with the unvarnished truth that is absolutely necessary then you have policymakers in Westminster making decisions based on false information gossip or hearsay and rather than on the actual detailed knowledge of commanders and I hold out for military officers today okay is the problem in the Conservative Party might Boris's Boris Johnson's team be behind this leak do you think I doubt that in norm I suspect that this is the work of somebody rather foolish who is Cavalier and entirely selfish the Conservative Party they are focusing on the they're focusing not on the right thing they're focusing on who leaked it what they need to focus on is actually who is who is the right person now to lead our embassy in the United States as we move forward under a new primer might the probe exit journalist Isabel Oak short I've got our hands on these emails easily know I'm doing I think it's fair to say that the civil service is widely known has been massively massively printable Pro remain many senior servants have been trying to stop brexit and I suspect that there are a small number of civil servants who are actually Pro brexit and you know they're that they're trying to sort of even the score maybe that's how this has come out is incredible the civil service would leak this where else does it come from tendu you can happen I'm not gonna speculate as to who may or may not have leaked things like this but I do think the politicizing people who execute the orders of elected representatives is a little silly I think what we should focus on is why orders haven't been given clearly enough or maybe why individuals aren't being given the instructions they require that the idea that somebody who is ordered to go to Brussels for example and promotes Britain's interests in Brussels is then criticized as being Pro or round to European it's nothing to do with that that's their job that's what they're paid to do just moving why we've got you in here just moving on to a slightly different subject European Parliament committee recommended quote the harshest penalty after Nigel Farage failed to declare 450,000 pounds worth of donation to do with the parents that nonsense typically brought up by channel 4 we're talking about a serious matter of state with our most important trading partner and for you to cheapen this enjoyed and that was of your opinion it's not our biggest thing that trading partner tom is the United States and it's our biggest biggest most important security partner and there are figures single foreign direct investor into this country Nigel Farage has been found in breach of European Parliament rules that's a matter for Mr Farage and the European Union nothing to do with this interview about our most important relationship and whether or not the US ambassador should retain his position in in my view sorry woody Johnson's doing a very good job I just see no reason why the UK the UK ambassador either in in Washington arms is it right though that elected politicians get sizable donations from very rich businessmen and don't declare them is that right that's got nothing to do with what we talk about we talk about what I'm talking about this well I'm talking about our most important trading relationship we've had a good chat about that some atomicity you know we're talking about here leaks for the US and the UK trading relationship and that is much much more important than a few scurrilous allegations from channel 4 against a member of the European Parliament Richard theis Tom T can tap thank you very much for joining us