Yesterday Tony Blair faced the Chilcot Inquiry over the Iraq war. An issue which had a profound effect on me personally as it was what turned me into an activist, so with my hatred of Blair all clear and out in the open what happened?
The enquiry from start to finish has been a farce declaring from the outset that the findings would not result in any prosecutions. Which brings into question the whole point of the inquiry, if not charges will be brought, if it won't result in a troop withdrawel and it obviously cannot reverse the damage caused to millions already.
Despite this Blair showed absolutely no remorse and the inquiry did not really push him all that much. Afua Hirsch from the Guardian said:
He responded to a question about the controversial intelligence dossier with a speech about how seriously he takes the nuclear threat from Iran. He responded to a question about weapons of destruction in Iraq with a a reply about military action taken joinlty with Bill Clinton in 1998.
It wasn't restricted to simply avoiding the questions put to him George Galloway went as far as to say
He was allowed to report that Iraq was in breach of UN resolutions in general and 1441 in particular. But in fact, they weren't in breach of it. There were no weapons of mass destruction..... Blair was allowed to tell a blatant lie.
The whole thing was clearly just for show and it was put incredibly well by Haifa Zangana when she said
Undergrads would have asked more probing questions.
Of course she is absolutely right and as an undergrad myself here coming the more probing investigation albeit confined to my blog. The whole argument about the legality of the invasion puzzles me as it was taken as fact previously that it was. Despite a vote in parliament agreeing to the invasion, the British government had no jurisidcition within Iraq and the UN didn't saction it. Not that the rights and wrongs should be determined by the law of the land.
I guess the argument about whether it was legal or not is focusing on whether the infomation provided was correct or not, but once again wasn't this blatantly obvious to anyone at the time. Blair said the 45 minute claim was a minor point so didn't really matter but it was picked up by the media. Now that may be true except for one important detail, Blair nor any other government official tried to correct the misinformation of the media. Quite happy to ride it out with a Lie. He also stated that it wouldn't have made a difference if the weapons inspectors had been given more time it would not have made a difference, well he's got that right they certainly would not have found any weapons.
By looking at what Blair actually said he made it clear that this was only able to happen in the post 9/11 era and that it was possible to gather the forces to do so! That despite there being no evidence between Saddam Hussien and Al'Qaida (and how would you find a link between a secular regime and religious hardiners?) that he could no longer take the risk with countries who wanted to aquire weapons of mass destruction. Then went on to say that they did everything to stabilise Iraq, to stop attempts to distabilise the economy by protecting the oil fields.
So it's there that Blair gives us the real reason, Oil its the only explanation why so many barbaric regimes are left alone or become good 'friends'. Throughout the whole process Blair makes it quite obvious to anyone seriously looking at it that here knew what was really going on at the time and just lied for the sake of war. He claims that it has made the world a safer place but once again this is a blatant lie and doesn't really compare well up against the facts
Blair did however tell a couple of truths, the first being that the cabinet were well informed and made the decision collectivey, it is clear that they were all in on it and Blair is just being seen now as an individual to take the blame, not that he doesn't deserve it but the rest of them do too.
The other truth which he tells is that we shouldn't ask the questions of 2003 in 2010, we should be asking the questions of 2010 in 2010. So let's do it. Why are there still 7 years later imperialist troops occupying Iraq as well as Afganistan causing terror and destruction!
Meanwhile it is clear that Blair will walk free without any problems or a care in the world, unfortunately the same can not be said for Joe Glenton who is facing a 2 year sentence for going awol and refusing to fight in these imperialist wars