19 JANUARY 2002, Page 27

Blair's bad taste

From Mrs Katie Grant Sir: Charles Moore (Diary. 12 January) thinks that Tony Blair's words of sympathy to the Browns for the loss of their baby, while sounding 'surreal' in Afghanistan, would 'sound right' on television back home. They did not. The confusion of Hamid Karzai, as Blair talked in the same way, in the same terms and in the same highly charged manner about the Brown's domestic tragedy as he talked about 11 September and the subsequent horrors endured by Afghan mothers and fathers, was palpable. Those of us listening at home were not confused. We were appalled. It was the most inappropriate piece of emotional incontinence I have ever witnessed, and had most Britons squirming with embarrassment.

Katie Grant