The Bush Administration loses one of its biggest allies, as the Tony Blair era in Britain is coming to a close.
President Bush is about to lose his closest foreign ally, as Blair announced today that he will step down as Prime Minister of Great Britain next month. Mr. Blair leaves office with the war in Iraq casting a long shadow over his political legacy.
After just over a decade in office, Prime Minister Tony Blair believes the time to move on, is now.
“Today, I announce my decision to stand down from the leadership of the Labour party,” Blair said.
In 1997, at age 43, “boyish” Blair's victory put an end to 18-years of conservative rule. He called it “a new dawn.”
A close alliance with President Clinton led to military success in Kosovo in 1999. Blair won praise for his leadership. Later that year, he helped his country heal and won hearts with a simple phrase: “she was the people's princess.”
After September 11th, Blair sent a message to his new ally, President Bush.
“America has no better friend than Great Britain,” Bush said.
With the deepening crisis in Iraq, Blair's popularity has spiraled downward. Today, he called the situation there “unrelenting and costly.” He also made amends.
“Hand on my heart, I did what I thought was right,” said Blair.
Many agree Britain is significantly better off thanks to Blair. He says he has even higher hopes for the country's future.