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What unity! What a greeting! At the start of PMQs, when the Speaker, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, announced the presence in the gallery of the Ukrainian Ambassador, Vadym Prystaiko, the two sides of the House rose as one and clapped with fervour the visitor.

“We normally do not allow applause in the Chamber,” the Speaker remarked to laughter, for there was no doubt that MPs, many of them sporting Ukrainian ribbons and not a few dressed in Ukrainian yellow and blue, were determined to make this declaration of support, and felt good about making it.

My mind returned to 27th June 2007, Tony Blair’s last PMQs, at the end of which the Labour benches rose to applaud him, while David Cameron, the Leader of the Opposition, had to gesture violently with his right arm in order to get the Tories to follow suit, which many of them did in a most tepid way, not just because they disapproved of clapping (though they did), but because they disapproved of Blair.

Vladimir Putin has induced, by his grotesque behaviour in Ukraine, remarkable harmony among his opponents.

Boris Johnson and Sir Keir Starmer competed to see which of them could express the most fervent disapproval of Putin and of those who, in Sir Keir’s phrase, “dipped their hands in the blood of Putin’s war”.

Chris Bryant (Labour, Rhondda) said he felt “ashamed” that the United Kingdom had signed the Budapest Accord in 1994, which guaranteed Ukraine’s territorial integrity, but was not now preserving that territorial integrity:

“Twenty-three men who once sat on these benches gave their lives for plucky little Belgium. They have shields down that end [he gestures towards the far end of the Chamber].

“Twenty-two did the same for Poland. They have shields down this end.”

Could it be that Bryant was calling for the outbreak of the Third World War? Was he himself about to depart for the front, along with other MPs of a martial disposition? Will he too one day be commemorated by a shield?

“I don’t want war,” he announced. He wanted sanctions “rapidly, today” against various senior Russian figures.

Johnson remained sombre. Everyone remained sombre. It was disconcerting to see such unanimity.