8 FEBRUARY 2003, Page 24

Bush and Blair

From Mr Andrew Rawnsley Sir: I'm always flattered to be quoted in your pages, but much less so when the quotation is inaccurate. Contra Christopher Caldwell (The fruits of victory', 1 February), 1 have never written that 'America cannot act without Tony Blair'. What I have written is this: without British support for military action against Saddam Hussein, the White House would be horribly isolated, not just in the gaze of the world, but also in the eyes of American domestic opinion. All the polling suggests that a large majority of Americans don't want to go to war without the British. That gives Tony Blair leverage on George Bush.

The next time you invite a 'senior editor' of an American publication to write for your pages, perhaps you should employ a fact-checker.

Andrew Rawnsley

The Observer, London Eel