As we make our way through the second decade of the 21st century it is a good time to review how we got here. It seems unusual that only 26 years ago Tony Blair was just coming into his first term as British Prime Minister. He was greatly supported by Gordon Brown as chancellor and an experienced cabinet that had spent many years in opposition. He also had a skilled Media manager in the shape of Alastair Campbell who continues in the media with theneweuropean.co.uk/contributor/alastair-campbell. from 1997 to 2008 the Labour Party remained a strong government with a large majority. It was to prove to be a particularly turbulent time for the young Prime Minister to deal with many events.
Within a month or so of becoming elected with a landslide majority Blair was to face the Enormous challenge of the death of Princess Diana. He was faced with the prospect of a nation in total mourning for a much loved public figure. He was able to display great empathy with the British Public and Campbell was able to coin the phrase “the People’s Princess”.
There followed several years of high optimism within the UK. As the end of the century and the Millennium approached the country felt a wave of renewed vigour through arts culture and what seemed a solid economic model. Blair’s second test came with the events of 9/11. His staunch support of the USA and the sending of troops to Iraq and Afghanistan began to test the Nation.