LONDON -- Gordon Brown has come a long way from those heady days in April when he basked in the praise of U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders attending the G-20 summit in London. He had, after all, just saved the world. Happy days.
That was then. Today, Gordon Brown looks drained and desolate, his political career in shreds, his leadership comprehensively trashed. The local government elections last week and European elections over the weekend could not have come at a worse time for Brown. Already fighting for his political life, the beleaguered British prime minister was left, alone and aloof, to suffer yet another dark night of ignominy and humiliation as his party sank to its greatest defeat in almost a century.
With his government in meltdown and his leadership teetering on the edge, only the power of inertia is keeping Brown upright. A flurry of resignations from his government last week -- a plot supposedly fomented by disaffected Laborites to hasten his departure -- revived the crisis but failed to dislodge the leader. Brown simply refused to go. Instead, he reshuffled his cabinet and flatly declared: "I will not walk away."