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The Hamilton Spectator
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Friday March 14, 2003
FOR five years Tony Blair has worn his power with something close to nonchalance. He knew that leadership fitted him well it might have been tailor-made and he knew he looked dandy it it. High office was carried easily, lightly, as if to the manner born, without breaking a sweat.

Suddenly, in the space of a few weeks, Mr Blair has changed utterly. I have never seen a man more burdened by power, more acutely conscious of the weight of responsibility, as he prepares to go to war, whatever may happen in the UN, the Labour Party, or the country. His face is grey and thin. His hair has died from exhaustion. A bump has appeared on his forehead.

Mr Blair knows that his political future will be defined by the next 72 hours. His expression was that of a saint-martyr on a stained glass window: ascetic, drained and brittle. He is no longer living on plaudit and soundbite, but on raw adrenalin, self-belief and the knowledge that disaster and humiliation are as likely as the success that has always come so effortlessly. He is living in a place of trial and tension that he has never been to before. Source.

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