Blair’s Demeanour 51


I am astonished that Blair had not prepared a convincing answer to the question of why he told Fern Britton that, if he had known there were no WMD, he would have found another argument “to temove” Saddam. Blair blustered, failed to finish several sentences and then concluded that he had not used the words “regime change”. So “to remove” Saddam from the local knitting circle, then.

I have no hopes rhe ultimate report will be anything but a whitewash. However the body language is fascinating. Baroness Ushar is not a good forensic questioner but is looking at him with great disataste. Blair has lost his smoothness in lying. When pushed on the details of Crawford Blair varies between stumbling and gabbling too quickly for the stenographer. When he manages to get off subject, for example on to Clinton and Kosovo, his whole demeanour changes and he is his old fluent self – but only when he wriggles off subject.

“I would not have done Iraq if I had not thought it was right” he just said. Nobody doubts that. I think Hitler could have honestly said the same too. There is nothing more dangerous than a sociopath who thinks he is right.


51 thoughts on “Blair’s Demeanour

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  • Craig

    Barbara

    Yes, I noticed it too. I’ll wait for the transcript and do a substantive piece tomorrow, because you have to tie some threads together. But Blair definitely and unmistakeably implied that military action is now needed against Iran.

  • Richard Robinson

    A few years back, I saw a piece by Steve Bell, the cartoonist, talking about drawing Blair. He said the key to it all is to watch his Evil Left Eye. Ever since, I can’t see a photo of him without remembering that.

    “So, if I do 50 mph in a 40 mph limit do you think Blair would defend me if I said I genuinely believed that the limit was 60?”

    If you paid him, very possibly. He was a lawyer, after all.

    I am becoming An Old Git, in that I have to point out that The Country Is Going To The Dogs. A *harumph* might even be in order. The possibility of reasoned argument is all turning into egocentric cultish mush, it doesn’t matter in the least what rubbish you believe, so long as you can keep everyone’s attention focussed on how Deeply, Passionately, Noisily, Sincerely you do it (not that I’m sure if he actually does or not. I just heard one of the bereaved relatives say “Give the man an Oscar”).

    “I beseech you in the bowels of Christ, pray consider it possible you may be mistaken”, to quote somebody else who might have done well not to go messing with other peoples’ countries.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Of course the imperialists are out to ‘degrade’ and attack Iran. Blair behaves exactly as a mid-ranking CIA asset would behave (if he’s scoring regular boundaries, it’s because he’s being allowed to) under initial questioning. Both of these things have been obvious for a number of years, but after a period when Iran’s help – a benefit of mutual contingency, one might call it – was needed in helping to haul Iraq back from renewed and definitive total chaos and thus save the US’s skin there, the drumbeats again are growing stronger, with the familiar noxious multiple assets in the media pounding out their usual (their only) rhythm. Any country – regardless of the particular regime or domestic political system extant there; its benificence or malevolence towards its own people is utterly irrelevant to the lords of war and money – which even snorts independently risks being economically and/ or militarily destroyed.

  • Richard Robinson

    “We had *another* inquiry, what more do we want? Truth? Justice?”

    Yes. *And* a boiled egg.

  • alan campbell

    “There is nothing more dangerous than a sociopath who thinks he is right”. Too right. A fair few of those on this site.

  • writerman

    Blair is an unapologetic, American style, right-wing, neo-conservative. There narrowa and paranoid world-veiw, simply oozes out of every pore in his body.

    It’s clear form the the way the panel allowed him to ride roughshod over them, that they weren’t up to the task of confronting him with reality, and demolishing his deluded house of cards.

    I think he’s a nutter, a very dangerous nutter. Watch out Iran!

  • writerman

    Blair was allowed to say the most extraordinary things, which could have been refuted with ease and demolished, if the panel had been adequately prepared, and if they had the will. What is it about this lying, conceited, creep, that mezmerizes people so? I simply don’t understand it.

    For example I think he used the “I” well over a hundred times. What about the Cabinet, didn’t they ever have anything to say?

    For me the crucial flaw in his defence, the flaw a decent QC would drive a coach and horses through, is that he didn’t put topling Saddam, because he was a bad man, a monster, and regime change at the front of his arguments for going to war; he concentrated on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction, yet apparently concealed his real reasons, why?

    Because he knew that the British people, Parliament, and the Labour Party, wouldn’t have supported a war for regime change or removing a bad man, so he didn’t go down that particular route.

    Now, he drops that argument almost completely, as if it didn’t really matter, after all one could just follow another set of arguments, and instead he concentrates on removing the monster from power argument.

    So he employs two sets of arguments. One to get Parliament and the British people to back the invasion, then when those arguments are proven to be false, there were no WMDs, he then tries to justify and legitimize the invasion with the real reasons that he knew he’d never get approval to invade Iraq on!

    Think of the trouble they had in the court of world opinion and the UN trying to get approval for an invasion of Iraq, which is why they cooked up the whole WMD story in the first place. What chance would they have had if they’ed tried to get backing for attacking Iraq because it was ruled by a monster? The answer is simple, no chance. The entire UN path was a ruse, a plausible cover-story designed to deceive public opinon and get the dirty deed done.

    It’s saddening to hear people impressed by how fantastically articulate and clever Blair is, what a marvelous lawyer he is. What an intellectual giant his is. What a leader.

    He’s successful because there is no opposition. He is allowed time and space to defend himself, without being subject to sustained scrutiny and detailed cross-examination.

    I would love to have a crack at him.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    Craig,

    The NOTABLE COMMITTEE has noted your observations:-

    “Blair has lost his smoothness in lying.”

    The NOTABLE COMMITTEE has now postponed its decision to place Blair on our current short list for 2011. If he does not improve soon before this inquiry, we have even decided that we shall recall the 2010 prize. He really does need to maintain the high standards that so impressed us on the first occasion when we awarded him our esteemed prize:-

    CITATION TO PRIME MINISTER TONY BLAIR

    DULY AGAIN ACKNOWLEDGED IN 2010

    16th December 2003

    Prime Minister Anthony Blair

    10 Downing Street

    London SW1 A 2AA

    England

    Dear Prime Minister Blair,

    It is a distinct pleasure to inform you that the ‘NOTABLE COMMITTEE for liar of the year’ has by unanimous decision declared you ‘ NOTABLE liar of the year for 2003′. Normally, the committee makes its decision in January of the New Year. On this occasion, your mendacity so impressed us that for the first time in the committee’s history exemption was made in acknowledgement of your achievements.

    There can be no doubt that in your capacity as Prime Minister, you lied brilliantly in support of the war in Iraq. No less a person than Saddam Hussein, is reputed to have said of one of your falsehoods, that you had just uttered, “The mother of all lies”. We crave your indulgence while we recall some of your finer moments.

    We noted the unflinching servility with which you dedicated yourself to lying for President Bush as his poodle, in advancing the case for war against Iraq. The claim that Saddam had Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMDs) was a high point. It showed exceptional commitment to fabrication when months after Saddam’s statue was toppled in Baghdad, and it was clear no WMDs existed, you resolutely lied on.

    One cannot forget, when you were caught out on the fib about Iraq trying to buy uranium from Niger how you held fast to the lie. It showed strength of character when you shared the fib with your friend George Bush, and led him to repeat the lie in the State of the Union address. It did not go unnoticed that the CIA had dropped the Niger assertion, but you ducked in to another lie, embraced the original lie, and reasserted that the information shared with the CIA had been based on separate intelligence. That was clearly no simple cock-and-bull story, but a really imaginative and monstrous lie that greatly impressed the committee.

    It was astoundingly brilliant when you faked the ’45 minutes’ Iraqi capacity for deployment of WMDs. Hans Blix’s exposure of that lie, in his diplomatic turn of phrase as you having made a “fundamental mistake” never detracted you from further barefaced lying. Your performance in the House of Commons, and your twisted-tongue statements have all helped to get you to the top. The use of the dodgy dossier before the Security Council has to be a source of much pride for you.

    We recalled President Clinton’s famous words, which had nearly earned him the prize, when he said, “I have never had sex with that woman”. The committee realised then that Monica had blown it, but Bill ended up blowing it too when he relented and said that he had made a mistake. By contrast Tony, under pressure you resolutely lied on, and that commanded our admiration and has made you, ‘El numero uno fibber and fabricator’.

    It is a distinct privilege to acknowledge that you are not an ordinary liar, but a liar of the first magnitude. Tony Blair, on behalf of the committee, I bestow upon you the honour ‘NOTABLE LIAR FOR THE YEAR 2003’.

    Congratulations.

    Sincerely,

    x

    ___________

    NOTABLE

    P.S. We again bestow the honour in 2010 on Tony Blair, with nothing further to say as the war and current devastation in Iraq have already spoken.

    PPS.( post Craig Murray report and assessment). Having read Craig Murray’s most recent assessment about your capacity for mendacity, we are now seriously considering recalling the 2010 prize.

  • Chris Dooley

    I listened when I could (in work) to the evidence given live on radio 5. I think I really need to to sit down and spend a few hours watching Blair on the video footage. I will pay special attention to the section on the legality (which seems to be the weakest link in his cocksure defence).

    I hope that Blair will be brought again before the inquiry with more exact questioning on the holes that people pick up on (without anyone giving him a tip-off on the questions).

  • writerman

    I was listening to “ordinary people” on various talk-shows talking about Blair, Chilcot, and the Iraq war. Some of them had actually lost family members in the war. None of Blair’s critics were stupid, but one could here that many of them lacked Blair’s education and self-confidence, facility with language, the casual ability to lie, and do it well.

    Honest people are at a tremendous disadvantage compared to someone like Blair, who just doesn’t care whether what he’s saying, is true or not, as long as it “works” and get’s him where he wants to go.

    I imagine it’s hard for many people to understand how Blair’s mind works. He will say what he thinks is necessary, useful, effective, and expedient; and the next day he could say something completely different, and that would be all right too.

    Bastards like him fit our current political system and society like a hand in a glove, which is why he’s been so successful, and why he isn’t behind bars.

    His “success” doesn’t just illustrate his class advantages and class education, but is also a refection of how degenerate and corrupt our glorious way of life has become. A fetid cesspool,where the biggest lumps of shit rise to the top with consumate ease.

  • frog2

    ## Honest people are at a tremendous disadvantage compared to someone like Blair,##

    Well put ‘writerman ” .

    Those other people, the honest ones,try their hardest to see all sides, do their research, even agonise , and then decide .

    We are not parliamentary debaters with the necessary forensic skills of the trial lawyer, we are a bit slow .

    Probably wrongly, I don’t give too much a fuck about strict legality ! I oppposed the Invasion, but then hoped they would make a success of the aftermath, the Phase Four in military speak.

    I realise now that the sort of people who would lie to go to war would continue to make mistakes, and never stop lying .

  • writerman

    Some people believe that Blair isn’t, first and foremost, a cynical, career, liar; but rather a shallow fool, who really believes the rubbish that comes out of his mouth. I think this is too charitable a conclusion. The man is/was, after all, both a lawyer, and a politician!

  • Anonymous

    I picked Blair for a lightweight the first time I heard him on R4. Probably not receiving brit TV is an advantage as you can really concentrate on the words, and judge what if anything is behind them. This was confirmed by the Hoddle case, showing the frivolous nature of the creature, and Eccclestone .

    Early on I think it was old Leo Abse who first came out to say he was not quite right in the head ? For years Matthew Parris too has been saying he’s off his rocker and in a way he is, but not certifiable.

    Good post here at david davis article in the Gdn.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/jan/31/david-davis-iraq-inquiry-blair?showallcomments=true#CommentKey:ac4c0650-8bbe-4af6-86f4-4c84c0971386

    We’re treading familiar ground if we go over the psychology of TB yet again . I don’t think there could be any point in talking/arguing with him, because there is nothing there, intellectually or morally .

  • writerman

    Blair’s latest public appearance, at the Chilcot “inquiry” was basically an exposition of the core values, and worldview, of the neo-conservatives, which I believe is close to belief in witchcraft, demons, monsters…

    That Blair has once again been given a platform to express his neo-conservative credentials, is outrageous and an affront to both the Iraqi and British dead.

    Blair is a propagandist/high-priest for a modern form of “crusade” directed against Islam; a crusade to “modernize” Islam and remake it after a fashion acceptable to western interests. I believe this is a futile exercise, doomed to failure; but only after much more blood has been spilled and much more money wasted.

    Blair is a dangerously deluded, ignorant, charlatan; who is now openly advocating yet another “crusade” only this time directed at Iran. His threats should be taken very seriously indeed, as he reflects current neo-conservative thinking in the White House and beyond.

  • Anon 00.32

    Indeed Blair’s eyes were very different in sizes, his right eye tiny, the left wide open like a punter at a peep show. Whether this indicates stress or lying I do not know. Certainly his heart problem (supraventricular tachycardia) might have been playing up, at one point I was wondering (nay wishing) he might keel over. Alas it was not to be.

  • Jon

    @writerman – regarding Blair as a “cynical, career liar, or [someone] who believes the rubbish coming out of his mouth” – I don’t think they need be mutually exclusive. I do think he believes in the core of neoconservatism, and I do think he believes he felt “invasion was the right thing to do”. But the lying has to come in when the disconnect between his simplified world fantasy (Israelis good, we’re good, Saddam bad, etc) and reality becomes apparent. I think you were right on the money when you analysed this, on other threads, in terms of sociopathic tendencies.

    It is a shame that the panel did not press him more on his change of heart: would he have pressed for regime change if, as should have happened, the WMD arguments were dropped? This would have opened up the can of worms in much greater detail, and illustrated much better Blair’s contempt for international law.

  • Jon

    @frog2 – thanks for the link. I am of mixed views on DD, and would agree that some of the subsequent comments about his shared responsibility for the invasion were quite correct. If millions of ordinary marched around the world because they could see the establishment bluster for what it was, politicians should have been double-checking. The “we were lied to” just doesn’t stack up for me.

    He also puts Afghanistan forward as the ‘necessary war’, which is frustrating, as he rather spoils the piece with it. The invasion of Afghanistan had greater international support, to be sure, but the country is now more unstable, and the US-installed “democracy” has turned out to be a complete sham, as have many of their previously installed “democracies”. Were it the case that the international community cared for the people of their target countries as much as they care for capital!

  • writerman

    I do think that what Blair really, really, believes in, above everything else, is in himself, first and foremost. He then finds a way to make the world fit inside his worldview. The state? that’s me! This is arguably the opposite of democracy. This is something closer to monarchy.

    I think one can argue that politics in the UK have been transformed over the last few decades, since Thatcher came to power, we now elect dictators, prime ministers, who tower over the country like giants.

    This is also connected to the vanishing of any real opposition in parliament, as the two party system changes into the twin party system, or the one party state.

    Blair isn’t alone. There are politicians all over the world who are similar to Blair, who are inspired by his style, who are allowed to dominate their national politics to an extraordinary degree.

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