George Michael's sexy video with Cherie 'a patriotic gesture'

The pop star George Michael will be seen making sexual overtures to the Prime Minister's wife in an animated video for his new single.

The song, "Shoot the Dog", reveals Michael with a new-found political conscience in lyrics that warn of the danger of the cosy relationship between Tony Blair and the US President, George Bush.

He turned to the makers of the animated political satire, 2DTV, to produce the video in which he is depicted on a bed in a leopard-print thong approaching Cherie Blair.

Other scenes in the contentious video depict the Prime Minister as a poodle to Mr Bush while in another dig at the Government, Mr Blair is seen as a ship's captain happily steering Britain towards the United States.

Michael said yesterday that he was under no illusions that his opinions were more important than anybody else's and he knew it was possible the single would be banned from the airwaves.

"I am first and foremost a singer-songwriter and lucky sod, and I'm fully aware that people don't really like their pop music and politics mixed these days," he said. "I have strong opinions on Britain's situation and I feel that in a time when public debate is being suppressed, even something as trivial as a pop song can be a good thing."

The former Wham! frontman said it was his love for his country that gave him the desire to "defend" it now.