With more U-turns than a drunken driver deluded Brown's long-awaited Iraq war inquiry is set to descend from fudge to farce changing at every twist and turn. Now the shabby stitch-up deal between Brown and Mandy to protect his boss Blair has been exposed. Brown could be cast adrift after serving His Master's manipulating purpose.
For arch political plotter Brown, the problem was intractable. Go for a full blown cover-up and risk the wrath of backbench Labour MPs and many in the Party or bow to Mandy on a promise to prop him up in the fag-end days of his premiership.
In the end the struggling Supreme Leader chose his own political survival over the Party and the people.
The outcome of the shabby deals has left the Iraq inquiry a confusing mess and left McCavity Brown looking foolish.
Playing out in the full public spotlight it was difficult keeping up with U-Turn Brown.
Standing up in parliament and announcing the inquiry would be held in secret to cries of a stitch-up. Now some bits could well be held in public.
It would not apportion blame. Then his own foreign secretary directly contradicts this, telling MPs exactly the opposite.
The inquiry is not a full blown legal public inquiry and does not have powers to subpoena witnesses under oath. Now it seems it can ask witnesses to make a formal promise to tell the truth.
The country was duped and taken to war on a lie. Everyone knows that. So why take such a suicidal line on something which gets right up the nose of many backbench true Labour MPs, military chiefs and families of the war dead and injured?
Brown was out-manoeuvred and out-classed as he caved in to Mandy pressure. A squalid little deal was struck to get Mandy support for increasingly beleaguered Brown and part of a Mandelson plan to protect Blair and his bid for the EU presidency.
John Kampfner, in the Spectator, blows the gaffe on the Prince of Darkness in a brilliant piece of incisive writing. Mandy's boss Blair has a lot to hide. Inquiry revelations could damage his plan to become EU president. Demanding a secret inquiry was part of the deal for supporting beleaguered Brown during the failed Blairite plot to oust him. In return he gets to be top-dog.
Now the inquiry is being dragged screaming into something resembling what it should have been in the first place. McCavity can turn around and say he kept to his part of the deal and it's out of his hands. But that won't keep Mandy or Blair sweet.
The inquiry outcome into the disgrace of a war is still set to take a full year until after the general election but could still blow both Blair and Campbell out of the water.
The power behind the throne will not be a happy bunny. Brown's last hope will drop him like a ton of bricks when the time it right.
Any spin of 'winning' yesterday’s vote on a Tory motion was a hollow victory. True Labour 'rebel' MPs have been let down and were expecting more than this sham, disgusted by the whole charade. It still leaves a bitter taste and a festering reminder of a fag-end government which spent billions of pounds and lost dozens of lives, fighting an illegal war.
A bunch of faceless cronies and government props will still be locked away behind closed doors. The issue of the legality and how the wool was pulled over everyone's eyes and the smokescreen of WMDs will be buried under the usual smokescreen of secrecy.
The shameful legacy of events leading to war has left many with blood on their hands, not least a disgraced two-faced ex-prime minister Blair and his "taste for war" and the squalid part played by New Labour chief spin doctor Campbell over sexed-up dossiers, invisible WMDs and the death of government scientist, Dr David Kelly.
There is still raw anguish of the families of brave servicemen and women whose loved ones were sent to a bloody war ill-equipped and duped into the Iraq killing fields on the back of a pack of lies and deceit. The dreadful legacy is still fresh in many people's minds.
The whole shameful episode needs the disinfectant of the public spotlight. The stitched-up secret inquiry with a whitewash outcome in a year's time would have put the clocks back to the bad old days of New Labour lies, deceit and spin. But now there's a chance it may have some real teeth after all.
But Brown has lost control of the inquiry and with it his power continues to ebb away.
The casualty could well be Brown. Mandy doesn't need him any more. Billy no mates Brown could be left to face September's leaving party conference all on his lonesome. Time to make that dignified exit and do what he's adamant he would never do - walk away.
Meanwhile another war rages in the new Vietnam of Afghanistan as over-stretched troops struggle to keep up with the doomed US surge to root out invisible Taliban.
Few had the guts to challenge war-mongering Blair in his Iraq war. Few have the guts now to ask what the hell we are doing out there in this bloody, hopeless and winnable war.
Picture: Front cover Private Eye