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Bishops slam Bush and Blair

TWO SENIOR Church of England bishops criticised the Prime Minister’s leadership skills this week in separate interviews to mark the beginning of the New Year.

The Archbishop of York called on Tony Blair to listen more to “the people”, while asking Christians to pray more for the Prime Minister. In an interview in The Times, he said in reference to Iraq: “One of the qualities of a good leader is that they have to be really attentive to the views of the people. It seemed at one stage that that was not happening.”

The new Bishop of Durham, Dr Tom Wright, added his criticism in an interview in The Independent. He accused Mr Blair and President Bush of acting like “white vigilantes going into Brixton to stop drug-dealing”. He did not deny there was a problem to be sorted out, but said that Mr Blair and President Bush “are not credible people to do it”.

He also accused American conservatives of supporting “a very strange distortion of Christianity”, and called for the creation of a UN army to settle international disputes.

Dr Wright spoke on similar themes in his sermon on Christmas Day, which was broadcast on BBC Radio 4. He described Mr Blair and President Bush as people who “still invoke Jesus to support plans that look much more like those of [the Roman Emperor] Augustus”.
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