British PM Apologizes for ‘Stupid’ Move to Ditch D-Day Event for TV Interview

British PM Apologizes for ‘Stupid’ Move to Ditch D-Day Event for TV Interview

British Prime Minister Rishi Suank apologized Friday after he decided to skip an international event commemorating the 80th anniversary of D-Day in France so he could record a television interview instead.

The rightwing leader did attend a ceremony honoring fallen British troops in Normandy but then missed a larger gathering of heads of state at Omaha beach on Thursday afternoon. ITV News’ U.K. Editor Paul Brand confirmed in the evening that Sunak had returned to Britain early in order to film an interview with him, adding that the network hadn’t asked Sunak to do so and they “don’t know why” that was when the prime minister chose to make time available for the recording.

The revelation sparked uproar, in turn prompting Sunak to release a groveling apology statement early Friday.

“The last thing I want is for the commemorations to be overshadowed by politics,” he wrote on X, saying that he cares “deeply about veterans” and had attended “a number of events in Portsmouth and France over the past two days and to meet those who fought so bravely.”

“After the conclusion of the British event in Normandy, I returned back to the UK,” Sunak wrote. “On reflection, it was a mistake not to stay in France longer – and I apologise.”

The error of judgment could hardly have come at a worse time as Sunak fights to avoid his Conservative Party being utterly annihilated in next month’s general election. The opposition Labour Party leader Keir Starmer—who is on track to secure an unprecedented majority, according to recent polling—did attend the Omaha beach ceremony.

“He’ll have to answer for his own choices,” Starmer told Sky News Friday when asked about Sunak’s apology. “For me, the only choice was to be there.”

Others were more scathing. Admiral Lord West, the former head of Britain’s Royal Navy, variously described Sunak’s decision on BBC radio as an “own goal,” a “stupid thing,” and a considerable “cock-up.”

The Daily Beast

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