Blair: “the Arab Spring” is partly due to people’s desire for political change, but also largely due to the desire for economic change, because of people’s anger at corruption and the anger that some people have been in office for many years but can’t give a better life.

we hope that China will control the process of development with reason and wisdom, which is not only related to China, but also related to the world. The deep problem of




and “eavesdropping door” lies in how modern media deal with politics.




and “Arab Spring” are partly due to people’s desire for political change, but also largely due to the desire for economic change, because of people’s anger at corruption and the anger that some people have been in office for many years but can’t give a better life. These lessons are useful everywhere.

— Tony Blair’s book

was written entirely by myself for three years. ” Tony Blair was pleased with the autobiography and could even say “proud”. He began to write this book entitled “Journey – Blair’s memoirs” after stepping down as British Prime Minister in 2007. In the three years of writing the book, the Labour Party was no longer the ruling party and the Conservative Party came to power again. Blair is still active in the political arena, running for peace in the Middle East and the earth’s environment and climate.

Landon house, the publisher of journey – Blair’s memoirs, paid Blair £ 4.6 million in advance to win the copyright. A month before the publication of the book, Blair announced that he would donate all the advance payment and all royalties to the Royal Veterans Association and build a sports center for disabled soldiers to commemorate the soldiers’ “selfless dedication”.

“China’s royalty income is also part of the donation.” During the Beijing International Book Fair, Blair said at the new book press conference of the Chinese version of “Journey – Blair’s memoirs”.

in the preface of the Chinese version, Blair increased his views and expectations on Chinese politics. For example, “the Chinese leadership seems to have a more severe attitude towards dissent in the near future. Perhaps this attitude is because of the upcoming leadership change, but also to prevent the emergence of the ‘Arab Spring’ movement and plunge the country into turmoil”. He summed up three challenges for China: political reform to return more power to the people, economic prosperity benefiting the people, and harmonious social development.

on the afternoon of August 30, 2011, Blair received an exclusive interview with Southern Weekend reporters in Beijing.

in an interview with Southern Weekend reporters, Blair said he was happy to come to China: “I want to see more China. I’ve been in Beijing too long.” In fact, he just came to China a few months ago. In Blair’s view, compared with his first visit to China in 1989, the changes here are very huge: “not only the development of hardware, but also the newly built roads and buildings. It was impossible for us to have such a face-to-face conversation 20 years ago. So everything has changed and become better.” (Nanfang Weekend reporter Zhang yingtu)

at first, I wanted to please everyone at any time.

Blair hoped that his autobiography would tell “interesting” and “serious” major political events, so that those who did not know much about politics would also feel “fun”.

but when the English version of the autobiography was published in 2010, the British and American media could hardly find positive comments on the book.

the new Yorker believes that today’s retired officials usually drive out memoirs before public interest fades, and they are more concerned with confidentiality than disclosure.

the British guardian’s criticism is more direct: when he says that the world is full of contradictions, the labor party, the longest serving prime minister, is really talking about himself.

Southern Weekend: in the preface of the English autobiography, you said you wrote a “different autobiography”. Compared with the autobiographies of other leaders, what is the “difference”?

Blair: I have read some autobiographies of politicians. It is often “one day or another, I met with these leaders and discussed these issues”. I don’t want to write it like that. I want to write a personal account, which is closer to the reader and can let people understand what it is like to be a leader. In today’s world, people want to know more about their leaders, not as respectful as they used to be. From the perspective of leaders, what does all this look like? It’s also important for readers to have an understanding of this – I mean the perspective of being a person, not a politician. That’s the difference.

frankly, many of the autobiographies of politicians I have read are not very interesting. The actions of my government and I will always be written in history books, analytical articles and biographies. In terms of telling major events, in a sense, they can write what I can write; But in my position, they can’t write. Only I can write.

Southern Weekend: in an exclusive interview with the guardian, you said through your autobiography “what must I say and explain”. What do you want to explain?

Blair: I want to explain what it is like to be a modern leader and how an ordinary person handles unusual situations and makes unusual decisions. So I hope this book will talk more about the process of decision-making and the method of being an official, rather than the comprehensive chronicles of events over the years. I want to write a personal account rather than a political declaration.

I named this book “journey” for a reason: at the beginning of being in power, I was a politician, but in the end, I completely became another politician. At first I wanted to please everyone at any time, but in the end I found I couldn’t. You have to make those decisions. You have to take responsibility. In those situations, it could be very difficultDifficult, but as a leader, taking this responsibility is an indispensable part.

Southern Weekend: did you circle taboos and taboos in advance in your autobiography writing?

Blair: of course, sometimes you don’t want to write about people who annoy you. Sometimes it involves government secrets. Generally speaking, those who have read this book feel that it is a rare and straightforward biography of political figures.

Southern Weekend: what supports you to keep those secrets? For me, I really want to reveal the secret to you.

Blair: we must learn to be cautious in our words and deeds. For everyone, secrets are part of life.

Southern Weekend: is it difficult to keep a secret?

Blair: it depends on what kind of secret it is. As a political leader, those secrets that harm the country must be kept. Gossip and gossip are not so hard to keep.

you can’t tell the public: Hey, I’m still learning to do

on May 2, 1997, Blair walked into No. 10 Downing Street for the first time and became the youngest prime minister in British history. Previously, Blair has been working as a lawyer since graduating from Oxford University. After joining the Labour Party, he served as a member of the opposition party and a minister in the “shadow cabinet” for a long time.

“I have never held any government office, not even the most junior assistant civil servant. The prime minister is my first and only job in the government.” Blair said it was reality that made him step by step into Downing Street.

Southern Weekend: your first job in a government agency was Prime Minister. What was the most difficult thing when you first went to work?

Blair: learn, learn how to do this job well. This is part of what I want to tell in the book, because I can’t say at that time – as a prime minister, you can’t tell the public directly: Hey, I’m still learning to do.

Southern Weekend: what have you learned?

Blair: it’s important to realize that some policy issues today are very difficult. For example, I have made important reforms in health care, education, law and order, and immigration policies. In all these areas, it is difficult for you to give technical and policy answers. Therefore, I think I didn’t really start to understand how to effectively change these social systems until my second term. Experience is a teacher.

Southern Weekend: you call yourself a “reformer” rather than a “politician”. How do you explain this sentence?

Blair: I firmly believe that it is an important proposition for me to make social justice suitable for the general environment of globalization. Because the main feature of today’s world is that changes are very fast, people and countries must adapt to changes. Therefore, I make the labor party more modern, and I make my country more modern.

I firmly believe that if we want to succeed in today’s world, we must be prepared for modernization. Therefore, my ruling idea is still a belief system based on the concept of social justice, but it is largely applied to the modern world in a modern way.

it’s troublesome to kill Saddam Hussein and keep him.

the Iraq war is the most controversial decision made by Blair during his ten years in power. In the journey, “9 / 11” and the Iraq war occupy a considerable space. Reading these chapters, you can see Blair’s detailed explanation, but you can’t see his apology.

“I don’t seek agreement. I just hope you can understand that the debate on the pros and cons of this policy was and is still more balanced than those who follow the rules of traditional wisdom – those Islamic extremists who caused the tragedy of 9 / 11 have always been regarded and will still be regarded as the biggest security threat in the 21st century.” Blair said he felt “disgusted, angry and painful” when John Chilcote, chairman of the Iraq war Investigation Commission, asked him “whether he regretted launching the Iraq war”.

Blair wrote in his autobiography that he had tried to contact the families of the soldiers killed in battle. “I feel that mourning and compassion are not enough. They are dead, but I, the decision-maker who caused their death, are still alive.”.

Southern Weekend: let’s talk about “9 · 11”. Do you think this event has changed the pattern of the world?

Blair: Yes, for me as a leader, of course.

Southern Weekend: in what way?

Blair: in terms of national security. For me, the most important thing about the “9 / 11” incident is that 3000 people died, and if they could kill 30000 or even 300000 people, they would do the same. How dangerous terrorism is, my view changed at that moment. Over the years, my view of this incident has gradually changed, but at that time, this had the greatest impact on me – they will kill as many people as they can.

Southern Weekend: ten years have passed. What do you think of it today?

Blair: the struggle continues. Unfortunately, it is true. Over the past decade, my view has also changed. I realize that this is not just a matter of a small group of extremists and terrorists, but also a more grand statement about culture and religion – that is, we (the West and the Arab world) are in conflict in the most fundamental culture and religion – needs to be questioned and defeated. Many people believe this statement, Although only a small number of them are terrorists.

Southern Weekend: do you think the Middle East issue is just a western issue or a global issueSexual issues?

Blair: some elements of the Middle East issue apply everywhere. I think the “Arab Spring” is partly because people yearn for political change, but also largely because of the desire for economic change, because people are angry about corruption, and because some people have been in office for many years but can’t give a better life. These lessons are useful everywhere.

Southern Weekend: do you think it is really necessary to start the war in Iraq?

Blair: I thought it was necessary when I made the decision. If you look at the Middle East today, I would like to say that it is better than when Saddam was in power. If Saddam still ruled Iraq, the situation would be very complicated. The situation at that time exceeded my previous prediction of danger. After the end of the Iraq war, I think what to do is to make the local people comply with the resolutions on chemical and nuclear weapons made by the United Nations.

the debate on the Iraq war will continue for a long time. Maybe anything can come to this.

Southern Weekend: what are the gains and costs of this war?

Blair: This is a good question, because we should see the pros and cons of one thing. It took us only two months to end Saddam’s rule, but then things became extremely difficult. It’s hard because… It’s not accidental, but because… It’s still the extremist forces that have created chaos. It is important that we now see that before the Iraq war in 2003, when Saddam was still in power, the situation was also very bad, and hundreds of thousands of people died in his repression. There were millions of casualties in the Iran Iraq war.

sometimes you just come to a turning point in history. You have to make a decision, but the consequences are difficult anyway. It’s troublesome to kill him, and it’s troublesome to keep him, especially for those he persecutes. It is sometimes forgotten that, as of 2002, the child mortality rate in Iraq was comparable to that in the Congo.

Southern Weekend: what do you think of the current situation in Libya?

Blair: many political leaders tried to resolve the deadlock between Gaddafi and the international community, and I was one of them. In 2003, he gave up his plans to manufacture chemical and nuclear weapons, stopped financing terrorism and began to help combat terrorist forces. Libya returns to the international community. But when he began to kill a large number of people, the western countries felt the need to intervene. In fact, the Arab countries stood with us. I hope Libya now has a different government system and has the opportunity to build a better future for its people.

but it was also a difficult decision. Intervention will have a consequence, and non intervention still has a consequence. In essence, I was… I sought a policy of “enlightened intervention”. I always remember in the early 1990s when we said, “well, let’s not get involved in the conflict in the Balkans and let them solve it by themselves.” But 350000 people died in the subsequent situation, right at the gate of Europe. So it’s really hard to make such a decision. I just want to say: we should all take a modest attitude, understand and respect each other’s views, both those who make decisions and those who criticize decisions.

I’m not the first politician to deal with Murdoch.

Murdoch supported the conservative party before 1994, and then began to support the labor party. British public opinion claimed that the change took place after the two had a dinner. On the eve of Blair’s election for British Prime Minister, Murdoch’s media published a huge news headline – “please vote for Blair of the workers’ Party” on the front page.

in July 2011, the “eavesdropping door” of the news of the world became the focus of global news. Blair told British media that he had never been monitored by the news of the world.

Southern Weekend: Prime Minister Cameron has repeatedly claimed that the London riots are a sign of the moral decline of British society. You condemn Cameron’s remark as a “cry of arrogance” and ignore the real reason. What do you think is the real reason for the riots?

Blair: first of all, I want to clarify that I have no intention of criticizing Cameron. It’s just that we need to be cautious about the problems in London. When people in China and the rest of the world ask me what’s going on in Britain, I find it alarming. That’s just a few people, and I think there are social problems to be solved, but they can’t represent Britain, or even the young people of Britain.

the problem we want to solve also exists in other developed countries: a small number of young people in society often come from problem families, so they are trapped in drugs, crime and gangs, and form their own subculture in society. This is the reality of Britain and most developed countries. I think we should solve specific problems rather than typical problems. Most British young people are still hard-working, decent and responsible.

Southern Weekend: according to British media reports, Murdoch’s political views changed after having dinner with you in 1994. Is this true? What do you think of “eavesdropping door”?

Blair: I think the anxiety about media means such as telephone tapping does exist and needs to be solved. But as always, I also think you often hear a lot of unreliable exaggeration in this situation. First of all, I am not the first politician to deal with Murdoch; Secondly, for those of us who have been dealing with the British media for many years – I have suffered a loss – it does not mean that you put aside the “evil Murdoch kingdom”, and the rest is all good media. I’ve dealt with them all. “Spekds”, “spkds” is not the core problem in my opinion. Telephone tapping is of great importance. We have to deal with this kind of bad behavior, but the most important thing isIs to return British journalism to the essence of journalism. You just cover the news, right? Don’t mix news and commentary. Now many British media set a position first, and then… British politicians need to try to deal with the media because the media are hostile to them. They are either unable to convey their position or distorted. The deep problem of




lies in how modern media deal with politics. I think this incident involves many more levels than the obvious illegal acts of several journalists.

Southern Weekend: “eavesdropping door”, you told the British media that you had never been eavesdropped by Murdoch media such as the news of the world. Why are you so sure?

Blair: because I don’t have a cell phone. Many people asked me if I was bugged. I said it was impossible. I’m very sure. Because I didn’t have my first BlackBerry until my term of office expired.

in the past, you may only read what you typed

in 1997, as the new British Prime Minister, Blair attended the handover ceremony of Hong Kong’s return to China. “The hosts told me that they would always remember my efforts for Hong Kong’s return to China.”

in 2008, Blair attended the opening and closing ceremonies of the Beijing Olympic Games, “For many Westerners, China seems to have become the center of the world stage overnight. Whether it’s the Olympic Games or the Shanghai World Expo, the two events hosted by the Chinese are flawless. But what I’m most interested in is the young volunteers who are polite, modest and try their best to show the best of China.”

Southern Weekend: you are a key figure in London’s successful Olympic bid. What do you think of next year’s London Olympic Games?

Blair: we will not follow Beijing. The Beijing Olympic Games are too spectacular to be imitated. London won the Olympic Games because we showed a new side of London. It is not only a great historical city, but also a great modern city. It is an open city with multiple beliefs and cultures. In 2012, London will have the opportunity to show its vitality and interest. It not only has a long history, but also has a bright future. A few weeks ago, I just went to the Olympic site and felt very excited. They did a great job. I hope more Chinese people can come to the London Olympics and enjoy it.

Southern Weekend: what role does China play in world affairs in the eyes of Europeans?

Blair: This is a change in history. In the middle and late 20th century, when I grew up, the West dominated the world. You have the Soviet Union, but it disintegrated later. The West has written history for centuries, and the 21st century will be completely different. For the first time in our history, we share power with others and form partnerships with the East. China’s role… Is a dramatic awakening of new geopolitics, which is not easy for the West and the East – we must accept the fact that China will… China has become a powerful force and may become a dominant force in the 21st century. Global issues cannot be separated from China’s participation.

at the same time, we hope your development will bring harmony, stability and world peace. This is also not easy for you, because if China wants to participate in the huge process of economic development, it is bound to bring political and social problems. We hope that China will control this process with reason and wisdom, which is not only related to China, but also related to the world.

Southern Weekend: are you worried about a war between China and the United States? “I hope this war will never happen. I think the leaders of both countries are smart enough to deal with their own problems. In addition, Europe should also strive to maintain its status and influence, because Europe can also play a certain role in today’s world pattern. I don’t want to leave all the world problems to the G2 (China and the United States). Other countries, such as India, Brazil and Russia, are very important. It is difficult for Europe to adapt psychologically to such changes. We have never faced a world as important as China and the United States before.

Southern Weekend: two months ago, you met Wen Jiabao in London. What did you talk to him about?

Blair: our conversation often revolves around the political situation and the world economic situation. I have a good relationship with him. I find it easier and easier to communicate with Chinese leaders now. I just met the foreign minister today. Now I’m going to accept your interview. In the past, when meeting with Chinese leaders, he may just read something with a written manuscript, and your interview may only read an outline. Now there are more and more informal conversations.

Southern Weekend: what are you busy with after leaving Downing Street?

Blair: busy with some very specific things. I am the special envoy of the Quartet for Middle East peace. I established the Blair Faith Foundation and a sports foundation. I do charity in Africa and do some work for global climate change. I also need to do some business to have the money to maintain what I said earlier.

I find that I can now go deeper into various problems. I have less power, but more influence.