After Brexit and the brutal fight against Covid still open, Boris Johnson tries a change of pace. The British premier has fielded a cabinet reshuffle replacing four ministers. Dominic Raab, the foreign minister and negotiator for the exit from the European Union, also changes his role: not to give a welcome to a long-time friend, Johnson has moved him to justice. In his place, in one of three crucial positions for the executive, 46-year-old Liz Truss.
In August, Rahab was overwhelmed by controversy over overstaying on vacation in Crete while managing the army’s exit from Kabul. Not only that: once reached on the phone, he refused to contact his Afghan counterpart, entrusting the task to a deputy. The diplomatic call, however, never took place. A fool added to the humiliation of defeat in a twenty-year war in which the United Kingdom was the leading partner of the United States.
The British had clamoured for his resignation but were not completely satisfied: Raab was only demoted with the less prestigious role of Minister of Justice, only to be appointed to the Catholic vice-premier. Among Johnson’s loyalists, the former head of British diplomacy had also been co-responsible for the chaos over Brexit and the controversial statements about the deals made by the Prime Minister himself. Former Minister of International Trade, Liz Truss, will replace him. Truss, 46, has experience in various departments, including Education, Environment, and Justice.
He is a conservative and also a supporter of the current premier. However, her appointment – underlines the BBC – overturns the gender balance within the executive with all critical roles in the hands of women. Goodbye also to the former Minister of Education Gavin Williamson, another of Johnson’s men, much contested for his management of the schools during the pandemic. Theresa May already cautioned him, after numerous blunders, including the famous Huawei Leak, a leak of confidential news related to the meeting of the National Security Council. The other two ousted are Robert Jenrick and Robert Buckland, who had to leave the Local Communities and Justice departments, respectively.
Michael Gove replaced him; a character known to the English tabloids for his frequentation of the clubs in Scotland. These replacements follow that of Matt Hancock in June with Sajid Javid – a former opponent of the premier in the primary of the Tories – in Health and should thus inaugurate a new season of government. However, some certainty remains: Priti Patel, iron minister of the interior, and Rishi Sunak in finance considered the rising star of the British right and a possible pretender to number 10 Downing Street, retain their posts.