Monocolumn

A daily bulletin of news & opinion

13 November 2013

Sunday, 3 November, 7.00
Dear Diary – hello there! John Kerry here. At the gift shop at Andrews Air Force Base, the cute one in the lobby. Just picked up this notebook. Nothing better than fresh white space and a thick fountain pen, I say. I say lots of things, though. Anyway, feeling good, looking good. Packed the blue ties. Big week ahead. Off to the land of pyramids, Aladdin, and… Ah, no Aladdin? Beth says Aladdin’s from somewhere else. Nice one, Beth. Who called the footnote police? Ok, ride’s here – toodles!

Sunday, 3 November, 17.00
“The road map is being carried out to the best of our perception.” That’s what they made me say here in Cairo. “The best of our perception.” I still don’t know what that means but it worked wonders. “Perception”, an excellent word – like “Massachusetts” or “yacht”. Reading coverage on the BlackBerry now. Not good. Should have mentioned Morsi’s trial, they say. He’s locked in a cage and I was next to the man who put him there. What do they expect me to say? Screwed if you do, screwed if you don’t. I was never any good at subtlety. Except for that “perception” thing.

Monday, 4 November 4, 18.00
Leaving Saudi Arabia now. Did you know that they really wanted us to bomb Assad? Like, really. They sent every top prince in the royal deck to tell me so. I always thought they were joking. Seems I can’t do anything right here. What kind of friend says they’re taking a “major shift” away from us? I kept telling them I’m just the messenger. Texted King Abdullah to say I’m sorry. He sent back a weird smiley face – half frown, half smile. What is this? I’m sending back a wink. No response yet. Modern diplomacy scares me. This stop, the stuff of nightmares. Onwards and upwards. Flying now to Poland.

Friday, 8 November 8, 15.00
Warsaw, Jordan, the Holy Land – boring, boring, boring. But, hey, guess what? I’m in Geneva. Surprise! Yeah, I owed Cathy Ashton a favour. Need to preserve appearances on this whole Iran business. You know, I know, Noam Chomsky and my aunt know that this is all for nothing. But hey, what are you gonna do?

Monday, 11 November, 20.00
Was pumped for Morocco but Beth says it’s cancelled. Bummer. Claire Danes is there filming Homeland. Great show. Saul Berenson, man, what a guy. Getting Beth to invite him for coffee. Pen running out of ink, too many autographs signed. Until next time, diary.

Yours fondly,

John Kerry

Daniel Giacopelli is a producer for Monocle 24

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