The Inner Cadre

A Cautionary Tale

by Mark Brook

Democracies are fragile. In order for the United Kingdom's to function properly, it is essential to have a Civil Service which cherishes the principles of loyalty to the present adnministration and committment to upholding the highest standards of integrity.

The overwhelming majority of civil servants are fundamentally decent, honourable people who, often working under very difficult circumstances, take great pride in their chosen career.

This short story principally concerns a group of ten senior civil servants whose motives and actions are anything but altruistic. Although there is frequent recourse to parody, these hypothetical events, set mainly in the opening decade of the third millennium, are examples of what could happen when such a clique chooses to undermine Westminster because it strongly disagrees with the government's policies, is fearful of change, and resents any notion of the civil service becoming more publicly accountable. However, there are many shades of grey.

The persona and events described herein are pure fiction. If the content gives cause for concern or offence, then those who wish to take issue need to examine their own thoughts and actions very carefully before putting pens to paper.

Mark Brook,
17b Park Crescent,

Grey Eminences


Editor's Note

When the first part of this manuscript landed on my desk, I was quite astonished at how well it read - it's Mark's first attempt at fiction, and the first serious 'satire' we've published. Originally intended to be about half its final length, like 'topsy' it just grew and grew!

I think it demonstrates very well the truth that most of our dealings in real life are conducted in shades of grey, and that a liberal democracy, founded on integrity, openness and fair dealing is the best defence against extremism, be it religious or political.

Recent events in Afghanistan and the Sudan may well upstage the narrative by changing the balance of support for fundamentalist Muslims. We shall just have to wait and see ...

I hope you will enjoy it.

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