Gordon Brown has been thrown on to the defensive over his economic strategy as his political opponents exploit a blistering German attack on his borrowing spree.
A furious Prime Minister hit back at Peer Steinbrück, Germany's Finance Minister, who accused him of making a spectacular U-turn since his years as a prudent chancellor by adopting a "crass" and "breathtaking" policy of "tossing around billions".
Mr Brown replied that refusing to take action to stimulate the world's economies would mean "failing in the role of government". He said: "The important thing is that almost every country around the world is doing what we have been doing."
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