Thatcher details path to betrayal 1/36point

John Rentoul examines the excerpts from Lady Thatcher's latest book

The extent to which Baroness Thatcher feels betrayed by her successor's reversal of her policies and loss of her government's "sense of purpose" is revealed by the pre-serialisation trailer for her new book in yesterday's Sunday Times.

The second volume of Baroness Thatcher's memoirs, The Path to Power, covers her life before she became Prime Minister but ends with a section called "Beginning Again" giving her present political views.

Central to the betrayal is John Major's alleged selling out of the nation's interests, expressed by his desire to be "at the heart of Europe". She says she knew he would take a slightly more emollient line, "but I was not prepared for the speed with which the position I adopted would be reversed".

The new stance saw events move "swiftly, and as far as I was concerned, in the wrong direction". Now Britain faces a serious threat to national sovereignty in next year's Maastricht renegotiations: "The problem with John Major's alternative approach was that, although it initially won plaudits, it left the fundamental problems unresolved."

To the charge that she allowed Mr Major, as Chancellor, to persuade her to go into the European exchange rate mechanism in 1990, she says she never intended that to be a prelude to joining a single European currency - "quite the contrary".

As soon as she left office, she appears to have changed her mind about Britain's membership of the ERM. By mid-1991 she says she was "bending over backwards" to avoid publicly criticising Britain's continued membership, which she thought was "unnecessarily worsening the recession by a monetary overkill resulting from an obsession with the exchange rate".

She says she gave Mr Major "the benefit of the doubt for as long as possible" before she allowed her frustrations to become known. Mr Major's European policy, which has "not even" reunited the Conservative Party, which was one of the main reasons for replacing her.

And she is scornful about Mr Major's broader foreign policy. "The special relationship with the United States has been allowed to cool to near freezing point," while Russia has been encouraged to believe that it will only win respect in the West "if they behave like the old Soviet Union". She attacks the Government for allowing Serbian aggression to go unpunished. "There is hardly a moral principle or a practical rule which has not been broken."

Lady Thatcher also dismisses the Government's domestic policies. Britain is "moving rapidly in the wrong direction" in social affairs and law and order. "The family is clearly in some sort of crisis ... crime has risen." She backs a switch from welfare spending to crime prevention and detection.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: SAGE Bookkeeper & PA to Directors

£18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity has ari...

Recruitment Genius: Online Sales and Customer Services Executive

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An On-line Sales & Customer Ser...

Recruitment Genius: Accounts Assistant - Fixed Term Contract - 6 Months

£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the largest hospitality companies...

Recruitment Genius: Electricians - Fixed Wire Testing

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As a result of significant cont...

Day In a Page

Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

Something wicked?

Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
10 best sun creams for body

10 best sun creams for body

Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon files

Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games
Women's World Cup 2015: How England's semi-final success could do wonders for both sexes

There is more than a shiny trophy to be won by England’s World Cup women

The success of the decidedly non-famous females wearing the Three Lions could do wonders for a ‘man’s game’ riddled with cynicism and greed
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map
Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

This was the year of 24-carat Golden Oldies