Anti-war protester to be war museum pin-up

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The Independent Online

For the past five years, Brian Haw has been jeered at, kicked, spat on and arrested while conducting his own one-man anti-war campaign in Parliament Square.

But after more than 2,000 days of heckling the Prime Minister for his campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, Haw could be about to receive an unlikely tribute from London's Imperial War Museum.

The museum is considering exhibiting a portrait of Haw that was recently completed by the award-winning British artist Nick Botting.

How an image of Haw, a dedicated pacifist, will appear inside a war museum is anyone's guess. But Botting tells me he has written to the museum and is optimistic the work will be shown.

"I am extremely hopeful that they will take it on, and they have told me there is a very reasonable chance it will get in," he tells me.

"They are a sympathetic museum, and I explained to them that I thought Brian was key to our time."

Ironically, the news of the tribute comes the same week that Haw finds himself back in the dock. He's currently being prosecuted for the size of the placards he erected in Parliament Square back in May.

"He's not a vain man, and he felt very uncomfortable while he was sitting for me," adds Botting. "But I told him the painting might help his cause."

Zara gets dragged through the mud

Zara Phillips's week got off to a shining start on Sunday evening when she was surprisingly crowned BBC Sports Personality of the Year.

Unfortunately, the honeymoon may come to an end before it's even begun. Phillips has come under fire from the Campaign Against the Arms Trade after she recently accepted a contract to pose in a mud-spattered dress as the "face" of Land Rover.

The company is a bête noire of the anti-arms trading lobby because of its sale of vehicles to countries such as Uzbekistan, where they were used to crush a peaceful protest in May 2005. It also lists itself in the British Defence Equipment Catalogue 2006.

"We're very disappointed that a public figure such as Zara Phillips would chose to endorse Land Rover," says a spokesman for CAAT. "It's an unethical company which sells equipment to oppressive regimes."

Harry Enfield and chums

Are the former scriptwriting partners Ian Hislop and Harry Enfield on each other's Christmas card lists?

Last week, Enfield announced that he and Paul Whitehouse are to return to the BBC with their first programme since Harry Enfield and Chums appeared in 1994. That show was written with Hislop, but they don't appear to have asked him to contribute this time round.

"I didn't know anything about this," the Private Eye editor tells me at yesterday's Oldie literary lunch at Simpson's-in- the-Strand.

"It's 10 years ago since I did anything with them." He adds: "It's great that Harry is working with Paul Whitehouse again."

Perhaps Hislop's legacy will live on: he created Enfield's hapless thicko toff, Tim Nice-But-Dim.

Bigmouth

David Cameron popped up over the weekend at Wembley Arena to see the Eighties crooner Morrissey perform in concert.

My mole in the mosh pit spotted Cameron with three male chums, looking "like a scruffy indie kid" in converse trainers and a T-shirt.

Apparently no one in the 10,000-strong crowd appeared to recognise the Tory leader, which was probably just as well.

The biggest cheer of the night came during Mozza's rendition of "Irish Blood, English Heart", when he sang the lyrics: "I've been dreaming of a time when the English are sick to death of Labour and Tories."

Reid brings tidings of PC joy

John Reid appeared on the GMTV sofa recently, cuddling up to Middle England with a declaration that he was "sick and tired" of the PC brigade hijacking Christmas. "Like the vast majority of people, I'm sick and tired of this sort of mad political correctness that said you can't wear a crucifix on British Airways, or you can't put up decorations for Christmas, or you can't call Christmas 'Christmas'," he said.

By coincidence, a copy of an official Christmas card from "the bruiser" has just landed on Pandora's desk.

Strangely, the card shows no religious imagery at all, instead just a solitary Christmas tree standing in Trafalgar Square. Turning inside, I'm greeted with a politically correct message: "Seasons Greetings."

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