Comment at end
27th November, 2009
One of the most entertaining things to watch these days is ‘worthy’ journos flailing around to try to find the “smoking gun”. Not WMDs. We ALL KNOW they’re under the Syrian desert.
The “smoking gun” in this case is nothing less than the reason(s) WHY Mr Blair took this country into the war in Iraq.
Steve Richards, a kind of occasional on-and-0ff Blair supporter thinks he knows here. Somebody told him about a meeting with Blair where it seems that Blair said he didn’t want to be like previous Labour leaders.
R-I-I-I-ight. Can’t blame him for that.
And also something about getting Britain into the euro, and getting rid of Brown.
R-I-I-I-ight. Can’t blame him for those either.
What makes me smile about this kind of analysis is that it takes a certain position, here it’s Blair’s determination NOT to be a typical anti-Europe/anti-war/anti-American/anti-Tory Labour leader – and builds from it a ‘smoking gun’.
Though believable in places this article is far too facile. It seems that the “evidence is being built around the policy” as it were.
“Blair led the domestic coalition of support that he felt most comfortable with, partly because he thought he would challenge it once: when he took up what he regarded as his historic mission to join the euro. It was in this context that he was uncharacteristically relaxed about media attacks that portrayed him as “Bush’s poodle”. He told allies: “At least they wont be able to accuse me of being anti-American when we have the referendum on the euro.
“Shortly after the war, in the summer of 2003, Blair turned his mind to the euro and was livid when Brown as Chancellor placed impossible obstacles in front of him. He wanted to prove then that he was as much a pro-European as he was pro-Bush.
Once the strategic decision was taken, that a new Labour PM would stand shoulder to shoulder with a Republican President, the course was set.
What of the substance of the issue? We know the answer to that. Recently Cherie Blair described her husband’s decision on Iraq as a “close call”. The substance of the issue was finely balanced, as it was for many, but as far as Blair was concerned the domestic calculations pointed overwhelmingly in one direction. They have not been considered by the succession of inquiries into why Britain went to war.”
1. Nick Clegg has MADE it! Someone agrees with him? Who? Hizb ut-Tahrir, no less. Well, Lib-Dems, already on the wrong side of history over Iraq, have to take support where they can find it. (HuT schools supported by Government. You decide on this one. Even Blairless Labour can’t be THAT mad, surely? SURELY?!)
2. This Telegraph commenter at the Mad George Pitcher’s site mentions something which is counter-intuitively in tune with another reason WHY ‘Blair and the Smoking Gun’. I doubt that the commenter meant this interpretation to be taken on the oft-used “oil” conspiracy. But it has the benefit of showing a wider picture, if a little skewed, in opposition to the picture he really meant us to see.
My picture from this?
A prime minister who had concerns over us continuing to live the life we’d voted him in to protect. Cold anyone?
As a point of clarification – this is not to say that Blair DID go to war in order to secure the warmth in our homes and fuel in our vehicles – I don’t accept that he did. But it is so say that there were many considerations feeding into the decision. Geo-politics DID play a part, there can be litttle doubt.
Relevant comment follows:
‘I think the big question is less to do with the personalities of Blair and his cabinet, and Bush and his admin and more to do with why the whole lot of them bent the evidence.
I don’t agree that it is a settled fact that the war was legal. The British Attorney General certainly changed his mind on that; but it is a side issue. Much the most important question is did anyone really believe that Saddam had WMD? I can’t believe the evidence was as clear and unambiguous that war was justified if there were absolutely non to be found after the invasion. There were not none as in a few but not usable, or as in a whole working programme but no stocks due to lack of materials: There were none as, all destroyed long ago and the programme a myth.
It seems information regarding the closure of the WMD programme was out and the lie was that the opposite was kept going to justify a war. Why? What was the real reason for the war? The Americans seem to have been going to attack anyway and Blair may have gone along for any number of reasons but he cannot have done that alone so how did he and the intelligence agencies convince so many people of the necessity? Even if Saddam had WMD he had that capability for years before and was no more dangerous by 2003; so could have been contained. Why not invade North Korea?
This is probably the only chance left of exposing the truth about the reason for the invasion which has to be oil and the American desire for a Middle East client state and the creation of new bases in the region to control the last viable carbon energy reserves outside Iran and Russia and the Caucasus. That truth may be so bloody obvious people are taking it as read but I think it should be exposed because it is more immoral than anything else. It is the truth that dare not be spoken because we all know it. We all know Blair and Bush were doing it to keep our lives as we like them. They did the unspeakable so that the petrol for the school run remained affordable.’
Early testimony has shown that Blair KNEW Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction and had NO links to al-Qaeda
The fibbing ex-Premier may not be called until the New Year, so the investigation into what went wrong in this ill-considered military adventure will cast a long shadow over Gordon Brown’s bid to recover public trust.’
‘Gordon Brown hopes to escape a grilling on the grounds that as Chancellor, he was peripheral to the critical decision-making.
His predecessor, however, will be at the centre of the proceedings. “No one is on trial here,” said Sir John in his opening remarks. But for many the inquiry is the long-awaited trial of Tony Blair.’
‘Lord Falconer captures the ambivalence in the old Blair team about the investigation. “I fear public opinion won’t be satisfied until some form of inquiry condemns Blair.
“I hope that this one is sufficiently authoritative to deal with that anxiety.” At the same time, he says, Blair remains convinced that he was right to go to war.’
4. Another one of the DECIDED, Scott Ritter here at The Guardian probably sees no irony in THIS remark:
‘In short, Saddam had been found guilty of possessing WMD, and his sentence had been passed down by Washington and London void of any hard evidence that such weapons, or even related programmes, even existed. The sentence meted out – regime termination – mandated such a massive deployment of troops and material that all but the wilfully blind or intentionally ignorant had to know by the early autumn of 2002 that war with Iraq was inevitable.’
Whereas, of course, Tony Blair has been found guilty of NOT having found WMDs and therefore his sentence has been passed down by the press – freedom termination – mandated by, so they tell us, public opinion.
Gibbet ready, guys?
Now go hang yourselves.