Bear in mind there's been a degree of success with this book already, to the extent that it set out to wind up the belligerati, the unhitched. Having never exchanged two words with them before, I suddenly find to my delight that my name has been taken in vain by both Nick Cohen ("puffed up political hack", "totalitarian") and David Aaronovitch (who consigns me to "Tosserdom"). I think this may not be a coincidence, comrades. Obviously, Harry's Place have taken umbrage, which I can always rely on them to do. That moronic ultra-Blairite Indy columnist has apparently been dreading the thought of having to read it, but was spared the burden by Fred Inglis's dopy review. And the less said about the culture editor of the New Statesman, the better.
If you haven't read the book, you might not understand why the Hitchens fans are tearing their hair out about it. I'll tell you why right now: it's because the argument in the book is unanswerable, and it puts a big black mark on all the pro-war, Islamophobic ideologues. Don't believe me? Come tomorrow, and I'll give you a demonstration.
: This went very well. A few of the unhitched came. The Harry's Place
nutter turned up. But they were surprisingly quiet throughout. I did get a few challenging questions, but they were more interesting than trolling. And this was the audience, looking all interested.