Not the Chilcot Report 140


Peter Oborne is everything Chilcot will not be: concise, honed, forensic and devastatingly logical. Oborne’s Not the Chilcot Report is the most important book that will be published this year. I strongly urge you to read it. Anyone who doubts the continued relevance of what Tony Blair did then, to Britain today will be left in no doubt of the poison still pumping around not just the British political system but the entire Middle East.

Oborne’s book is a tremendous example of how much information can be made digestible in a short space by excellent writing. Oborne presents the clearest of accounts of the history of the Iraqi weapons programmes and the very clear knowledge that Britain and the international community had of them.

Where Oborne is at his best is skewering the guilty men by pinpointing the key lies and distortions. In so doing, he is able to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the major figures acted dishonestly and with deliberation. Here for example is a phrase from a minute of 15 March 2002 by John Scarlett, then Head of the Joint Intelligence Committee and later Head of MI6, discussing what to release to the public:

“You will still wish to consider whether more impact could be achieved if the paper only covered Iraq. This would have the benefit of obscuring the fact that, in terms of WMD, Iraq is not exceptional.”

Oborne has seized on the phrase that proves that Scarlett was knowingly engaged in deliberately misleading the public, in order to promote an aggressive war. Do not expect anything so acute from Chilcot.

Oborne sets out the unanswerable case that UN Security Council Resolution 1441 could not “revive” the authorisation of military action against Iraq under UN Security Council Resolution 678, as it specifically stated that any further breach of Iraq’s disarmament obligations would “be reported to the Council for assessment”, not trigger military action. That assessment never happened. Oborne also points out the more overlooked argument that 678 itself only authorised military intervention for the purpose of securing Iraqi withdrawal from Kuwait anyway, so it could not be “revived” unless Iraq again occupied Kuwait.

Oborne sets out in cogent and consecutive detail how Lord Goldsmith both held and set out this self evident fact, and that this was hidden from the Cabinet. Oborne highlights the evidence from Chilcot that every single one of the Foreign Office’s stellar department of Legal Advisers held this same view, that to invade Iraq would be illegal. And he skewers in every detail Goldsmith’s servile behaviour in flying to Washington to be given, and adopt, the Bush lawyers’ logically impossible position that it was open to any individual UN member to make the unilateral determination of whether Iraq was in material breach of the disarmament obligations.

Nothing here the cognoscenti did not know – but to read it set out so squarely still sends a chill down the spine.

Oborne is perhaps at his strongest on the disastrous consequences of the Iraq War. This is where neo-con revisionists in the mainstream media have worked hardest – the narrative window is that perhaps the war was based on an untruth, but the consequences were good.

Oborne shows that the security services predicted before the war that to invade Iraq would increase the terrorist threat in the UK. He shows conclusively from evidence to Chilcot including from former MI5 head Eliza Manningham Buller that the invasion of Iraq had indeed increased the terrorist threat to the UK and had directly caused the radicalisation of young British muslims with consequences including the 7/7 bombings.

Manningham Buller told Chilcot that it was beyond doubt, and measurable, that the Iraq invasion greatly increased the terrorist threat to the UK, and to counter the arguments of those who deny this – particularly Tony Blair – she pointed out that immediately following the invasion, Blair had agreed to an unprecedented doubling of the budget of MI5 – the domestic security agency.

The consequences of the invasion of Iraq in terms of Middle East instability and lives lost have been incalculable. In simple terms of deaths in Iraq alone, Oborne explains more clearly than I had ever seen that Iraq Body Count only includes fatalities confirmed in two separate English language sources, and therefore this is a major underestimate. 1 million dead is probably a more realistic estimate.

As battle rages around Fallujah for at least the fifth time since the invasion, as the population still starved of work, electricity, education, sanitation and health services rises up in Iraq and periodically attacks the luxury enclave of the Green zone, as the Daesh phenomenon looks to transmogrify into its latest manifestation, attempts to distance these consequences from Blair’s destruction of the Iraqi state are pathetic, yet widely disseminated in mainstream media. Oborne conclusively yet concisely explains why this propaganda is wrong.

The one area where I think he Oborne a little too kind is in his description of Chilcot and his team. Oborne rightly explains no great expectations of the Chilcot report should be held. He has told me privately that he expects that Chilcot will seek to “spread the blame widely and thinly”, rather than hone in on Blair and the really guilty parties. This is my information also; from the criticisms individuals have seen in the “Maxwellisation” process I learn a lot of the blame is to be shifted to the military.

But I don’t think Oborne really nails it on the extent to which Chilcot is a pre-arranged whitewash job. Chilcot was himself a member of the Butler Inquiry, an earlier whitewash covering much the same ground. Oborne points out the interesting fact that now Lord Butler is a free agent in the House of Lords, he has much more squarely accused Blair than anything he said in his report. But Oborne has only gently referred to the point that the Inquiry members were almost all very active cheerleaders for the Iraq War. Only one, Baroness Prashar, is arguably neutral. Not one of the numerous distinguished former Ambassadors, Generals or academics who opposed the war was selected.

The Chilcot Inquiry is a put-up whitewash with membership personally approved by Gordon Brown. It will not be worth reading. This short book by Oborne tells you everything you need to know. Read it instead.

Here is an excerpt from Oborne’s conclusion:

“In the decade after 9/11 the United States spent more than $3 trillion and squandered the lives of 7,000 American and allied soldiers. The consequence of these wars has been the destabilisation of Iraq, the emergence of Islamic States, and a failed state in Afghanistan. Meanwhile the reputation of America and its Western allies has been gravely damaged by the rendition, torture and detention without trial of terror suspects, and other cases of western brutality, such as Abu Ghraib.

…trust in the state was shattered by the Iraq War, and its gruesome aftermath. We have learnt that civil servants, spies, and politicians could not be trusted to act with integrity and decency and in the national interest. This discovery was shattering because it calls into question the moral basis on which Britain has been governed for the last hundred years or more.”

The truth is, these consequences were not unforeseeable. Indeed as Oborne notes on 14 February 2003 Dominique De Villepin, French Foreign Minister, had predicted to the Security Council exactly what the consequences would be:

“…the use of force is not justified at this time. There is an alternative to war; disarming Iraq through inspections.

Moreover, premature recourse to the military option would be fraught with risks… Such intervention could have incalculable consequences for a scarred and ravaged region. It would compound the sense of injustice, would aggravate tensions and would risk paving the way for other conflicts.”

It was an aggressive war on the basis of lies, for which people still die today, all over the world.


140 thoughts on “Not the Chilcot Report

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  • Fabio Luelmo

    Very well put. While I don’t think Blair, Bush & Co will ever pay for their crimes, I am very supportive of the next best thing: keep the real history alive so that it never happens again and that Blair’s reputation is tarnished beyond redemption. It still drives me mad when he is asked to speak on the telly like his opinion matters. For a fellow like Blair, if he becomes a persona non grata it is a fate worse than death.

  • Jim

    Very good. My only point of contention with the piece here is that paragraphs 9 and 10 refer to the seriously increased risk of terrorism and radicalisation as a direct consequence of the invasion. Hasn’t the blog host made a great deal in quite recent posts about what he perceives as a gross exaggeration of the real threat of Islamist terror risks and the dangers posed by radicalisation, together with the increased surveillance necessary to counter this danger. You can’t have it both ways surely?

    • Macky

      Yes you can have it both ways; there’s nothing mutually exclusive or self-contradictory is stating that foreign military interventions increase the risk of domestic terrorism, and that this increased terrorism risk is then itself being hyped up & exploited.

      • Fabio Luelmo

        I agree with Macky. There is an Increased threat but not so much that he need to scare everyone into giving up their rights and values. More to the point I would add the terrorism threat in the west is overhyped. But the real increase is terrorism in countries like Turkey, Iraq, Yemen, Ethiopia etc. That has increased an enormous amount, so much that it is indistinguishable from civil war. A bomb blast goes off in Bagdad and kills me 100 and it doesn’t make the news as it happens there so often. If it went off in the west and killed 1 person it’s news.

      • Jim

        I was not referring to any ‘hype or exploitation’. The blog host has posted on the theme of his perception that the terror risk is exaggerated, and that the counter terrorism measures necessary to oppose it are some sort of gross imposition on civil liberties. You can’t simultaneously identify and deplore the very real ‘blowback’ risk which he’s identified in this post, and agree with the counter-terrorism measures necessary to combat it, and deny it which he’s done in previous posts on the subject. It’s one or the other.

        • Macky

          ” and agree with the counter-terrorism measures necessary to combat it, and deny it which he’s done in previous posts on the subject. It’s one or the other.”

          Not too clear what you are getting at; Are you saying that CM has agreed & then disagreed with counter-terrorism measures ? What has CM denied, and when/where ?

          • Jim

            I’m saying CM has posted opinion pieces quite recently in which he says the risk of Islamist terror attacks is grossly exaggerated and that these grossly exaggerated risks are being used as a pretext for mass surveillance which impinges in a huge way on our civil liberties.
            In this post he’s referencing Oborne’s book and the evidence from Manningham Buller and others, to skewer Blair for the hugely increased risk of such terror attacks as ‘blowback’. There is an obvious disjunct between the two positions. It’s a very simple concept, are you being deliberately obtuse perchance?

        • craig Post author

          Jim,

          It is only contradictory if you believe there are only two possible opinions, that Islamic terrorism is either a massive threat to western civilisation, or it is all false flag and does not really exist.

          I hold that Islamic terrorism does exist, but is greatly exaggerated. The Iraq War greatly boosted it which led, for example, to 7/7. That it is still not a major threat in the scheme of things (even in the year of 7/7 many more people drowned in their own bath in the UK than were killed by terrorists), is of course no consolation to the victims and their loved ones.

          So there you are. It exists. It was increased by the Iraq War. But its threat is still greatly over-exaggerated for propaganda purposes. There is nothing inconsistent in this.

          • Jim

            Hi Craig, just seen your reply.
            Well, we’ll have to agree to disagree on this one. There have been so many foiled terror plots uncovered since then I’ve lost count. I’ll have to go and check the numbers. The idea that the risk is minimal is just crazy. The risk to any individual if being caught in a terror attack may be negligible, but that statistical risk is very different from the threat of an attack itself. You seriously suggest that here in the UK you feel like we’re living in a ‘police state’, as some posters on here say?

          • nevermind

            tell us about these foiled attempts, tanks at Heathrow and much more, Jim, we love to hear of all these fictional/wannabe/ media enticing attempts.

          • Uzmark

            I think the key point is that we invaded Iraq supposedly to protect us from domestic attack (even within 45 minutes) but the effect was to increase he risk of domestic attack. I don’t think you can argue against that.
            I also don’t think you can argue that the terrorist threat is not hyped. We don’t see countless headlines and emergency laws about the more dangerous things in this country like people drowning in their baths or being killed by cows

          • Jim

            Uzmark :

            And Macky attacks my logic! Craig in paragraph 10 of his piece argues and provides evidence for ‘the greatly increased risk’ of terrorist offences in the UK as a direct result of Blair’s part in the Iraq invasion.

            Which part of ‘greatly increased risk’ is it that you don’t understand?

            I haven’t noticed any huddles of cows making plots to kill people lately, does your facetious comment have any meaningful point? It’s as risible as Craig’s non-point about statistical risk, and comes from the same I’ll thought out root.

          • Uzmark

            Jim. I’m not sure i’m following you. My first paragraph acknowledges that there was an increased risk of domestic attack following the invasion of Iraq (despite the reason for invasion being to make us all safer).
            My facetious point about cows is that despite the above, the non-stop coverage in the last 15 years from media/government of the dangers from terrorism is massively disproportionate

          • Uzmark

            Jim, I do think your point is relevant (although I believe the two ideas can coexist). This is one of the ironies of the situation that the government goes on about the terrorist threat which they need to protect us from, but their policies in recent years made it worse

      • Macky

        ” It’s a very simple concept, are you being deliberately obtuse perchance?”

        You have just repeated in other words your comment @13.03, which was addressed by my comment @14.07; your apparent inability in your post at 15.38 to see that “hyped” & “exaggerated” are the same thing, may explain that if anybody is being “deliberately obtuse”, it is perchance yourself.

        • Jim

          No, my point is that CM’s previous claims of an exaggerated risk are now being claimed by him in precisely the opposite direction, in order to damn Blair. Accurately damn Blair in my view. How hard is that to understand? This is more trolling. I have zero desire to engage with you, I’ve told you this several times. My question and points are addressed to the blog host, as was my question yesterday re: Mair’s charging under terrorism protocols. Please cease and desist from your feeble trolling.

          • Macky

            Well I see Craig has said the same as I said to you; are you going to accuse him of “feeble trolling” also ?!”

          • Macky

            “You’re both demonstrably wrong, that’s the important thing”

            No, the important thing is to for you to substantiate your pov, so that it’s convincing to others, agreement with oneself doesn’t count as any sort of validation !

          • Macky

            Do you think that blow-back terrorism from the devastation we have caused in the ME, has claimed more lives, or is even on the same scale, as from the terrorism we suffered from the IRA ?

          • Alan

            You also choose to ignore the other fact, Craig mentioned, that Blair had agreed to an unprecedented doubling of the budget of MI5. That’s twice as much as needed previously. No wonder they’ve managed to keep an eye on everything. Everybody but MI5 has been doing the austerity dance.

          • nevermind

            i’m not impressed Jim, is this all you can come up with?
            I show you a few victims of terror, state terror. there could be as much as 2300, not just 60 on this list.

            http://calumslist.org/

          • Shatnersrug

            Jim, what Craig says makes perfect sense – what you say just doesn’t. The logic is screwy. I’m sorry I don’t wish to offend you.

          • Jim

            Shatnersrug :

            What Craig does not make perfect sense at all. In the tenth paragraph of his piece he references Manningham Bullers evidence for the greatly increased risk of terror attacks in the UK as a consequence of the invasion.
            In his reply to me he talks about ‘threats to Western Civilisation’, which has absolute zero to do with anything we are talking about. We are discussing whether the invasion did or did not greatly increase the risk of terror attacks in the UK. Craig argues and provides evidence that they did. He’s correct. Which means he’s incorrect to claim the opposite. Very simple stuff, why are you unable to see the obvious?

          • Jim

            Shatnersrug :

            What Craig does not make perfect sense at all. In the tenth paragraph of his piece he references Manningham Bullers evidence for the greatly increased risk of terror attacks in the UK as a consequence of the invasion.
            In his reply to me he talks about ‘threats to Western Civilisation’, which has absolute zero to do with anything we are talking about. We are discussing whether the invasion did or did not greatly increase the risk of terror attacks in the UK. Craig argues and provides evidence that they did. He’s correct. Which means he’s incorrect to claim the opposite. Very simple stuff, why are you unable to see the obvious?

          • Jim

            Alan :

            ‘Austerity’ started under this Tory government not under Blair. The increased MI5 budget would make sense in a UK made far more dangerous due to Blair’s enthusiasm for Bush’s war. Which is what we’re discussing. And which Craig in his opinion piece here has argued did happen as a consequence of Blair’s actions.

          • Macky

            “In his reply to me he talks about ‘threats to Western Civilisation’, which has absolute zero to do with anything we are talking about. ” ??!!

            “Which means he’s incorrect to claim the opposite.” ??!!

            I bet nobody still has a clue what your point is !

    • Courtenay Barnett

      Jim,
      “Very good. My only point of contention with the piece here is that paragraphs 9 and 10 refer to the seriously increased risk of terrorism and radicalisation as a direct consequence of the invasion. Hasn’t the blog host made a great deal in quite recent posts about what he perceives as a gross exaggeration of the real threat of Islamist terror risks and the dangers posed by radicalisation, together with the increased surveillance necessary to counter this danger. You can’t have it both ways surely?”
      Why so? Can’t there be parallel lines of policy running:-
      1. A bad foreign policy decision to invade Iraq, with the proven consequences of increased ME radicalisations and resistance to the West’s intervention, is one line.
      2. A bad domestic and foreign policy posture to demonise all Muslims and somehow attempt to brand them all as ‘terrorists’, is another line.
      The commonality, as between 1 and 2 is the bad decision making processes; there is similarity in the processes as between the invasion and the ‘demonisation’ in that the Iraq invasion did equate to an exacerbation of ME tensions – while – ‘demonising’ the Muslims serves well to exacerbate and even radicalise via resentments stirred in the Muslim communities for being labelled ‘terrorist’ by reason of religious belief.
      However, surely, one can oppose the Iraq invasion – and – one can also oppose the scapegoat labeling of Muslims and not be seen to contradictory – while being in actuality perfectly consistent in maintaining opposition to bad policies ( be that domestic/foreign or both).

    • fwl

      Craig’s response is a good one and it’s an easy to understand point. Blowback is real but purposely exaggerated in the UK with serious consequences for our freedoms.

      We should be more resilient and less willing to.be put to sleep by media nanny.

      A funny example is that in London there have in the past few weeks been calls for the police to have more powerful guns and also to switch off CCTV to save money. What sort of logic is that. If there is a sufficient risk to need better guns is there not also a need for the CCTV.

      Reminds me of a public institution, which introduced physical tube style barrier controls for security because of terrorism, but removed them when it got a wedding venue licence because it interfered with making money. Yes there was a risk, but perhaps it was not all it was cracked up to be.

  • Simon

    These last days, I was idly wondering what happened to Peter Oborne. This gives me a very creepy feeling of prescience.

  • eddie-g

    “This is my information also; from the criticisms individuals have seen in the “Maxwellisation” process I learn a lot of the blame is to be shifted to the military.”

    I have heard this too. I have also heard that those targeted are unlikely to take this lying down. The top military brass at the time of the invasion were among the most skeptical members of the establishment ahead of the Iraq War, at least one I know first hand very nearly resigned on the eve of the invasion, and they all intensely dislike New Labour. They regarded the Bush administration, Cheney and Rumsfeld specifically, as evil. And they were being asked to make all the necessary preparations for the Iraq War at the same time as Blair was demanding they downsize the armed forces.

    They are also now out of the careerist rat-race, and aside from some ceremonial duties, they don’t have a whole lot to lose by going rogue on the establishment. If Chilcott is off-message as far as they are concerned, there will be righteous fury. Whatever you think of Mike Jackson, someone like him is not going to let a word of slander against the military go unanswered.

  • Tom

    We have learnt that civil servants, spies, and politicians could not be trusted to act with integrity and decency and in the national interest.

    No it hasn’t. With a few honourable exceptions, we’ve known for some time most people can be relied upon to carry out orders, regardless of the wider ethnically issues.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanford_prison_experiment

    • Bhante

      Thank you for this, Several recent postings on this blog have personally helped me a great deal. The British government have tried to assassinate me three times (first time under John Major, next two under Blair/Straw) – quite apart from several kidnappings/”renditions” and now 20 years of unrelenting persecution including spreading lies in my social environment and much worse,

      Why? Initially (John Major) exclusively because I was regarded as a minor impediment to certain very high value foreign investment projects involving multinational corporations. Why it has continued for so long is inexplicable, but the best reason I have been able to find all these years (Blair/Straw onwards up to the present) is cover-up. Craig supplied a most valuable missing link in his recent comments about administrative power as a juggernaut that – once it is set in train – just continues on its own and is almost impossible to stop. Thank you for that, Craig. (I think it was in the comments to Craig’s beautiful article on cows, those very docile creatures!)

      On reading the above comment I looked up the Stanford prison experiment in wikipedia, and from there followed a link to the earlier Milgram experiment at Yale, and all its subsequent replications. That was really very very helpful to me, thank you Tom. It helps to explain so much. I wish all the staff of MI5, MI6, GCHQ and British civil servants would read about the Milgram experiment and the implications for their personal conduct.

      The warmest of thanks too to Craig for hosting this blog – I’ve enjoyed reading your articles, I have the greatest of respect for you and for your values – if only more civil servants and politicians had a decent shot of ethics in their constitution!

      • Tom

        Sorry, yes, the Milgram experiment was what I was looking for. Apparently 65% of us are prepared to administer a lethal shock when we suspect an innocent victim is already dead or unconscious. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milgram_experiment

        I wager that percentage of conformity rises to 99.999% or more in the army or civil service when you count the number of people like Craig Murray who stood up for his principles and instead of being lionised got crushed by the state and media machine.

        • lysias

          They’ll do their best to crush you if you go public with your dissent, but are much less likely to do so if all you do is to refuse to obey their illegitimate orders.

        • fwl

          Steady on Tom you are making a lot of easy assumptions about an awful lot of people there.

          • Tom

            Only 65%. How many whistle blowers can you count in proportion to the organisations they serve? I’m not blaming anyone for not doing so, just pointing out the depressing reality that enabled the war on terror.

  • nevermind

    Well written P.Oborne, I shall have a read whence I finished my NSU book, thanks for the link Ba’al.
    what is particularly goring is that nobody will have to stand in the dock for all these lies and crimes, they are all able to use the rigmarole of state and justice,sic, to hide from jail.
    Welcome to ‘anything goes in the 21st century’.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    I think Peter Oborne is one of our few mainstream journalists left with any real integrity. I was delighted when he resigned from The Daily Telegraph, and his book “The Triumph of the Political Class” is a brilliant exposition of what these creeps in Westminster are really like. A very brave thing to do when he has to mix with them on a very regular basis. His Channel 4 Dispatches documentary on the UK Israeli Lobby, amazed me, not because he made it, but Channel 4 actually broadcast it.

    I could argue with one line you wrote…I don’t know whether they are his words or yours, but I do know that there are boundaries that are not safe to cross if you want to remain employed and in some cases remain alive.

    Maybe Anthony John Hill can translate it. The Jury amazingly understood it and rejected the judge’s direction and found him not guilty. You are highly unlikely to have read about it in the mainstream media, but he was in Wandsworth jail at the same time as Julian Assange.

    The words are “and had directly caused the radicalisation of young British muslims with consequences including the 7/7 bombings.”

    And Hill’s video is this. I suggest you watch it.

    “7/7 Ripple Effect 2”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwyzpzEgUWE

    Tony

  • Tom Welsh

    Let’s make sure that Mr Oborne’s book is a best-seller! Thanks for the excellent review, Craig. Sounds like some of the best news I have heard all year. What a brilliant idea to publish it just two weeks before the Chilcot Report itself, thus ensuring that everyone sees what a pack of lies the report itself will be.

  • bevin

    The case is unanswerable. And yet “answered” every day by an Establishment completely dominated by those who supported Blair and Bush 110%. (Corbyn being the exception proving the rule.)
    It is not just a question of lessons not having been learned but of ‘mistakes’ being repeated again and again (Libya, Syria, Ukraine and now, looming in the South China Sea, the ‘containment’ of Chinese ‘aggression.’
    And the reason is very simple: Iraq was not a mistake. It was not even a crude divergence from strategies previously adopted, it was all of a piece with a geopolitical strategy for imperial hegemony that dates back, in its current form, to 1944 and in its broad outlines to the C18th.
    The Establishment has no regrets; it has no intention of changing course; it is aiming to win World War III, preferably by intimidating its rivals into surrender/partnership but, if necessary, at the risk of ruining the planet for hundreds of thousands of years.
    Any opportunity to weaken or split the political class, to thwart its plans, to slow down its momentum, should be seized. Right now that means going against the unanimity with which they are pressing the case to preserve their European Union.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford aka The Biscuit

    I am particularly interested in how Oborne explains the 9/11 attacks which started this devastating process, and why Chilcot is such damaged goods that he agreed to oversee such an extended cover up.

    Will get a copy of the book, and read it carefully.

  • TJ

    “Oborne shows that the security services predicted before the war that to invade Iraq would increase the terrorist threat in the UK.”

    Levying war against the sovereign, which is High Treason, just like William Joyce AKA Lord Haw-Haw.

    • nevermind

      thanks for that link Bevin, and there are some idiots plotting for war, more fires destruction and excess spent energy to heat up the planet, if its thermonuclear we can add a few more thousand years.
      It makes our pithy problems disappear into nothingness.

    • Ben Monad

      I can’t understand the lack of response to this, komo.

      Until i remember that Sweden seems to lead the World in misandry.

  • Geoffrey

    Thanks for the review,Craig. I will buy it and read it.
    Incidentally,the only time that I nearly thought there was a point to the EU was when De Villepin tried to stop our invasion of Iraq.

  • Loony

    The Iraq war and commentary surrounding it is a useful tool to measure the speed of decline.

    It is widely accepted that the war was illegal, it attracted many protests, destroyed a number of careers, and spawned official inquiries.That these latter will likely result in a cover up or defrayal of blame is not so relevant as the fact that they occurred at all.

    Since Iraq the US/UK/NATO has wrought at least an equal amount of destruction on Libya and Syria. No-one now denies that ISIS is a creation of he US intelligence services. The US/EU/NATO are prosecuting an insane policy with regard to Russia – a policy that could easily result in global nuclear war.

    All of this has been done, and is being done, with an absence of public protest. No officials are resigning as a consequence of policy and no official inquiries are likely. Both policy makers and those they fraudulently claim to represent seem infused with a nihilistic devotion to a death cult.

    • craig Post author

      Carne gave evidence to Chilcot. I did not and do not expect to feature. Carne is a good man.

  • Republicofscotland

    The war against Iraq, was by all accounts railroaded, by unscrupulous politicians and military personnel and backed by the corporate sector who made a fortune from death and destruction, which continues to this day.

    Too this day governments around the world use the possibility of terrorism as a whipping stick on the masses, much of which can be traced back to the illegal war in Iraq. I’m sure Blair and Co, must be thinking to themselves with regards to terrorism post Iraq war, we can use that to our advantage, every cloud has a silver lining as they say.

    The illegal Iraq war has inadvertently lead to the political classes and their security services imposing stricter laws, a reduction on free speech, and heavy monitoring of communications of the masses, all under the guise of national security, against terrorism.

    “According to the French academic Dominique Reynié, between January 3 and April 12, 2003, 36 million people across the globe took part in almost 3,000 protests against the Iraq war.”

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protests_against_the_Iraq_War

    Their pleas fell on deaf ears.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protests_against_the_Iraq_War

    Oborne’s book will be worth a read, the Chilcot report however, may not.

    • Bhante

      “The illegal Iraq war has inadvertently lead to the political classes and their security services imposing stricter laws, a reduction on free speech, and heavy monitoring of communications of the masses, all under the guise of national security, against terrorism.”

      Don’t forget that started not with the Iraq war, nor the 9/11 before it, but with the 1998 Omagh massacre. At the time MI5 admitted they – at the time the Omagh massacre was planned and perpetrated had infiltrated and were monitoring the Real IRA group. Subsequently available official documents have revealed that MI5, the Gardia, and the CIA all knew about the plans for the Omagh massacre in advance, yet it was allowed to go ahead. Some lawyers have commented that the oppressive legal changes brought in almost overnight after the massacre were so detailed, they would have to have been planned months in advance. That was the start of the long slippery slope in the destruction of human rights and the fortressing of political control.

  • Bright Eyes

    RIP Dr David Kelly, murdered by the state.

    Born: May 14, 1944, Rhondda
    Died: July 17, 2003, Oxfordshire

    • Trowbridge H. Ford aka The Biscuit

      Don’t forget the unsolved murder of Royal Cadet Steven Hilder who was apparently killed by the Mossad in a parachute accident to make that of Jurgen Mollemann look commonplace when they were the only known ones.

      Hilder’s murder postponed that of Kelly, and made it more difficult for the MoD.

      • Republicofscotland

        Then there is the unsolved assassination of Prime Minister Olof Palme in 1986. Palme was accused of being anti-EU and more pro-Soviet. His assassination did clear the way for Sweden to join the EU, which was presented in the Swedish European Union membership referendum of 1994, that gained only a 52% majority.

        • Trowbridge H. Ford aka The Biscuit

          You are overlooking what the Anglo-American neo-cons wanted to trigger by Palme assassination – a non-nuclear conclusion to the Cold War which would lead not only to the end of not only the Soviet bloc but also the USSR.

          It was only prevented by the spies the KGB, under Putin’s direction,developed, warning Moscow what was afoot, and the counter measures it took from the confrontation getting out of hand.

          • John Goss

            Not sure about this Trowbridge. My slant on the Palme assassination was the typical regime-change that has led to the current Swedish kecks-droppers bending forwards and backwards at the service of Uncle Sam.

            Anyway he was most likely assassinated by the South African secret services, with the involvement of Craig Williamson. This murderer really should be behind bars but for the forgiveness of Nelson Mandela who granted pardon provided Williamson confessed to his team’s murders of good South Africans.

          • Trowbridge H. Ford aka The Biscuit

            Doesn’t make much sense, Goss: Sweden kowtowing now to the USA while SA shot Palme.

            It was done apparently by a UK assassin, Captain Simon Hayward of the 14 Intelligence Company, after CIA could not find a free- lance assassin to do it while John Lehman’s US Navy did most of the dirty work.

            Sweden even helped take Hayward out of circulation as a drug runner, once the Soviets could not be made the flallguy for the assassination.

            Little wonder, no Sweden, especially left=wing politicians, have dared cross Washington since.

        • lysias

          Israel did not like Olof Palme:

          Olof Palme, who succeeded Erlander as Swedish Prime Minister and leader of the Social Democratic Party in 1969, was more critical of the United States and its allies, including Israel. In 1969, the Social Democratic Party adopted a neutral stance in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict.[12] The new policy was justified by the Swedish diplomat Gunnar Jarring’s position as the United Nations Secretary-General’s special envoy in the conflict (the so-called Jarring Mission).[12]

          In October 1973, during the Yom Kippur War, Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Krister Wickman criticized Israel and said the problems in the Middle East could not be solved by military superiority.[12] In June 1981, Sweden condemned Israel’s attack on the Osirak nuclear reactor in Iraq as a “clear violation of international law”.[13] In July 1982, after Israel’s invasion of Lebanon, Prime Minister Olof Palme compared Israel’s treatment of Palestinian children to Nazi Germany’s treatment of Jewish children in the Nazi concentration camps and ghettos of World War II.[14]

      • lysias

        I remember being instructed by one of my superiors in naval intelligence in the early 1990’s to keep my eyes open for any information to the discredit of Möllemann, as his superiors wanted to have such information. So some officials in the U.S. government were out to get Möllemann at that time.

  • fedup

    There is a misunderstanding regards Chilcot Report, these are;

    1- The establishment seeking to find out where did it go wrong, and why its nefarious planning and execution of a war of choice became so manifestly obvious to everyone of the great unwashed?

    2- The great unwashed that is we the people seeking to find out how did the criminals set as our dear leaders started a war of choice and got away with it?

    In the case of “1” Chilcot has delivered and also set the records in place for the future historians recalling the events of this era to refer to, and wax lyrical about the reasons of killing millions of Muslims for the duration of the hundred years war that Bu$h and bLiar started knowingly, purposefully and deliberately.

    In the case of “2” while the wounds are fresh and there are the pain in the necks likes of a few of us around, the contemporaneous recollection of the events will be kept alive and current. This making sure that the events that lead to Iraq war and effectively made the twenty-first century to become one of the darkest era of the humanity during which civil liberties were eroded and the rampant mass murdering wars were declared and fought in those far flung lands. The reason for being; to cripple/arrest/halt the progress (if any) of these nations targeted, making these to become wholly dependent on the West, all in the way of rendering the resources of these nation available to the oligarch owners of the multinationals. Whilst enriching the other multinationals that were in the business of providing the means of the mass murder that brought about the industrial slaughter of the nationals of the same countries that were attacked.

    As the memories of WWI are consigned to the revision of the history and the mass slaughter of the WWII has come to be remembered only for the reason of killings of a certain group of its victims, the current wars will be rationalised and portrayed as the wars of enlightenment and stopping of the proliferation of the nuclear weapons or is the “Nukular” weapons as the user of exotic substances and the tongue-tied prezident of the world G. W. Bu$h used to pronounce.

    In all probability in year to come there will be a statue of bLiar erected as there is a statue of Bomber Harris to honour his efforts. The next batch of dear leaders will be deploying the same techniques in invoking the martial spirit by declaring anniversaries of fortnight passed the Iraq war date, and then there is the month anniversary and so forth, as we witnessed the VE day and the VJ day and then there was the battle of omdurman, and so forth to help remind us of the glory past, and the power of our ordnance and the caliber of our guns.

    In any case, considering the vanishing civil liberties and the proliferation of surveillance on citizens, perhaps history ought to recollect the Iraq war as the pivotal moment of the history in which the whole of humanity was taken to ransom by a handful of bastards whose sole purpose was the sequestration of the planet and ownership of every damn resource on it. But that is highly unlikely as Chilcot will be the only resource available to the historians whose investigations will be based upon. As for the rest who take the time to read Peter Oborne, well we all know about the conspiracy loons and the tinfoil hat wearers, don’t we?

    • Tony M

      What are the highest scoring cards in the Top Trump series, World’s Most Notorious Mass-murderers? Several past consecutive British prime ministers must feature highly in that rarified company of blood-soaked monsters.

      What is to be done though fedup. I’m not going to walk around head-bowed like the Germans for half a century over what their psychopathic elite done, over what Iraq (where John Major/the Tories’ role is as demonic as Blair/Labour), Afghanistan, Libya and Syria, though I feel for those people and acknowledge and abhor the horrors inflicted on them, I’m not to blame, those responsible are as much my enemies as they surely will be eternally through future generations, to all but the most impossibly serenely pacific of their millions of overseas victims and their descendants. I’d be heading here bent on revenge, if I wasn’t already here!

      I simply don’t know how to vote in this referendum, and I think now the idea is to discredit referenda generally ahead of the coming second Scottish Independence referendum, when more and even more, not less direct-democracy is what we need most to thwart the elite at their every turn. Both sides are awful, the EU is pretty damned awful, but the thought of a triumphant Tory right is more local and personal – better then the unknown bureaucrat you don’t know than the Labour/Tory devils and swines you know all too well? So I’ll probably abstain, been practically bed-ridden for days so fuck voting on Thursday, getting the shopping in will be more than enough excitement and exertion on that day. EU membership only makes sense in the context of Scotland’s EU membership as a nation in our own right on our terms, unmediated by the utterly vile elite running the freakshow that is this dis-united queendom.

      • nevermind

        Tony, if you don’t know what to vote for, please pick the next resident immigrant who hasn’t got a vote and vote for her/his choice, how radical is that and nobody can say anything, you can even announce it.

        I will have a proxy voting remain for me, and sod the rubber spine electoral commission. I wonder what a campaign to fund the commission from private means would achieve, they are too dependent and the politicians have them on the leash, hence the go slow on the 29 county investigation, one could think its a paedophile inquiry that slow.

        Why? take one good accountant, or ten and you have a result in 3 days, then you prosecute, and have a byelection’s.

    • Ben Monad

      Heh. When Ghandi was asked what he thought about Western Civilization, he replied he thought it would be a good idea.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    This is extremely strong for The Queen. Maybe we yet stand a chance of escape from this EU (USA controlled) monster. Both the army and the security services have sworn their allegiance to the Queen. They are not supposed to be working for The Americans.

    “EU referendum: Queen asks guests to give her three reasons why Britain should remain in Europe”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/06/21/queen-asks-guests-to-give-her-3-reasons-why-britain-should-remai/

    Tony

  • Anon1

    Thank God George Soros is on the side of the ordinary working man rather than exploiting them for personal financial gain.

    Vote Remain.

    • Ba'al Zevul

      Some might not realise you were joking there, Anon. Put it this way, Soros probably has better intelligence on the likely result of the referendum and its financial consequences than Cameron (or Johnson) and he will have prepared his short or long position on sterling – vice versa in gold and/or dollars – with that in mind. Remember what he did to the silver market? The last thing on his mind is the British working man.

    • RobG

      Anon1, although most on this board have strong political views, most stay away from overt political campaigning. By all means state your views, but you do realise that if we vote to leave there will be a plague of locusts, etc, and we will all be bankrupt and living in cardboard boxes, and the Queen will be revealed to be one of the lizard creatures who control the universe.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YDO1JfZ3aRI

  • Bob

    If the book is anything as good as his writing on cricket it is well worth the money.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Another fount of wisdom has been below the radar for some days, last seen in Beijing addressing a JP Morgan confab from which the press was excluded He is believed still to be under contract to JPM for a paltry number of millions to do this occasionally. Like Soros, he has suddenly discovered an affinity with the working people of Britain –

    “A vote to Remain is a vote to stand up for working people across the country whose jobs and communities depend on our ability to trade with Europe.”, he believes, according to the Mirror. His own ability to trade with Europe does appear to be limited, however, His main port of call there is Zurich, which isn’t in the EU, despite his near-constant globetrotting. And (no doubt sensing that the EU isn’t perhaps the healthiest market around) he spends a lot of time, in China and the US. And the Middle East, not discernibly with the intention of fixing the shitstorm he started there.

    Well, he was mentioned.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Again off topic. But probably worth more attention than the EU referendum. It’s worse than TTIP, if that’s possible, and the MSM has been completely silent on the subject:

    https://wikileaks.org/tisa/

    https://wikileaks.org/tisa/analysis/Analysis-of-20151006_Annex-on-State-Owned-Enterprises/page-1/#pagination

    US initiative, aims to shut China out, purpose is to force state-owned enterprises in the US, the EU and 22 other countries to privatise, effectively. Global corporate domination by decree. Needs a spotlight. Craig?

    [also posted on An Apology, in error]

    • Ben Monad

      Adding OT.

      “The choices that face Britain are the exact same as here. On one side, you have the leave the EU group. These are the Donald Trump supporters. They have good reason to support said cause but in doing so may doom the planet to world wide destruction. Then there is the stay with the EU, or the Hillary supporters, which will keep the status quo and as a result keep us as slaves to the power elite. What a choice. In other words, there is no good way out here. But much like I will most likley do here, I will vote for Hillary and the status quo because the uncertainty of a Trump presidency gives me many reasons to pause.”

      http://thewarmongerreport.blogspot.com/

      And the English seem to feel the same way. At this point, it looks likely the Brexit may not happen. The stock market today certainly feels that way as it is going up because of that specific notion. Polls show a close race with staying just edging out leaving. But, as is here, I have little faith in fair elections so I expect them to stay in due if for no other reason, vote rigging.”

      • Ba'al Zevul

        I’d cavil with that conclusion if I may. Either option with Europe leaves us with the global power elite (ie high finance) in charge. We are economically in no shape to leave anything: the timing couldn’t have been worse for Brexit, and our economy is ialready welded into the global structure: if we separated nothing would change there as we don’t have the economic muscle to change it, and we don’t have the genuine will. Without the sincere realisation that this is unsustainable, and the determination to make it sustainable – which would require a drop in someone’s living standards and at least a limit of one vast luxury yacht per billionaire – leaving by itself achieves nothing. The same palming-off of mass immigration, cultural dilution, lower wages and primeval competition for essential services as being in some way essential to our wellbeing would be inevitable. The notion of nationhood would continue slowly to be evaporated. Being different would effectively become as illegal under one option as the other: the speculators in money would demand it.

        Actually, I think Trump is far more likely to reinforce US nationhood, if only in the brief interval before the apocalypse, than our Brexiters are to restore ours. Note that most of them are chronic Atlanticists, and are only thinking of exchanging one big rich friend for another.

        There are worse ways of going than being instantly vaporized*

        *’z’ in tribute to Webster. Sulfur. Aluminum. Meet the new boss, Brexiters.

    • nevermind

      A privatised County council? privatised social services? Police? Fire and rescue? forcing us to pay corporate shareholders profits?

      now I won’t be able to go to sleep, Ba’al….

      Now that’s why we need to make Commissioners electable, whatever they think of it, and if enough countries agree to change their unelected status then they will have to comply or face a revolution. Some 2.5 million people have been on the streets against imposing that kind of lawyers paradise.

      • Ba'al Zevul

        Galloping over the horizon is the next scam: the not-for-profit industry which will be invoked as the successor of the state-owned enterprise. A descendant of PFI, this is capable of returning investment capital with interest to the investor and subsidising a lot of expensive suits while being registered as a charity, qualifying for taxpayer aid but not enriching shareholders directly. The devil is in the operating costs, which can be anything you like. The Charities Commission really needs to get on top of this area, but if the City likes it, obviously it won’t.

        Sorry about the insomnia. Gin helps.

      • Bhante

        The economic interests in maintaining the free trade between UK and the other EU member states are so massive – and the actual taxes at issues pretty small compared to other costs – that it is a foregone conclusion that the UK and EU would agree emergency free trade conditions at the speed of lightning to avoid unnecessary and meaningless uncertainty in the economy. To do otherwise makes no sense at all. Before the vote all parties concerned have vested interests in stiring up fear of Brexit, but once Brexit is voted in (if at all) they will immediately say the exact opposite to calm the markets and create maximum economic stability.

        The political stability and viability of the EU will be another matter – again there will be a desperate struggle to calm things down and reassure any other states thinking of following the UK out of the EU, which means RADICAL reform of the EU will be urgent and virtually guaranteed – THAT is the interesting part of the whole exercise. The absolute optimum result for the reform of the EU would be a very narrow Brexit majority which minimises the snub effect, emphasises the importance of addressing controversial issues, maximises potential for mending fences, and creates the optimal environment for reaching compromise (ha! there never would be a small majority for Brexit though of course, because it would be fraudulently massaged into a Remain majority, just like the Scottish referendum, but that is another matter).

        If Brexit goes through, I think several countries will be pressing for reform of the power structures of the EU, with a threat to follow UK out if they don’t get it. The EU will be forced to give way, to avoid becoming completely untenable. This, I think, is the greatest fear of the powers that be, that Brexit would force a total rebalancing of powers between corporate/establishment interests and citizens.

        Inevitably in such circumstances the UK would be involved in the dialogue that ensues, and there is no reason why the UK would not be encouraged to rejoin the EU at the end of successful reform. So I think the UK has every reason to wish for a radical shake-up of the EU through Brexit, and certainly has nothing to lose through it.

        The only area the UK COULD lose out is in the so-called social protections, human rights protections, humanitarian law, European Court etc. But all these areas are at present under such terminal threat from corporate power that (a) within a few years they will be entirely worthless anyway (or probably much worse) and (b) the only chance of reinvigorating these areas is through a direct challenge to the power structures – i.e. Brexit. Therefore again Brexit is the answer to salvaging European humanitarian law, social justice, etc. Look at what is happening to labour law in France – that is where all these things are going in Europe, i.e. down the drain. The only thing that can save it is Brexit

        • Bhante

          Topically this belongs in a later thread, but related directly to my earlier post:
          “… it is a foregone conclusion that the UK and EU would agree emergency free trade conditions at the speed of lightning to avoid unnecessary and meaningless uncertainty in the economy. To do otherwise makes no sense at all.”

          From the Guardian this morning:

          ” 4.59am 04:59
          A Canadian MP is urging the Canadian government to prioritise a UK-Canada trade deal.

          — Jason Kenney (@jkenney) June 24, 2016

          Canada should immediately demonstrate respect for the choice made by the British people, & prioritize negotiation of Canada-UK free trade.”

          Market forces will quickly move to counterbalance threats of instability by arranging bilateral free-trade agreements before the Brexit formally even comes into effect.

          Major political changes are another matter – British voters have signalled a strong rejection of the status-quo, which will be echoed by many across Europe, and the EU will have no choice but to respond with political reform.

          I think this is a perfect result for the referendum:
          1) 52:48 is still a fairly close result, confirming hot controversy over the status quo
          2) London was the ONLY English region in overal favour of remain, which also corresponds to regional dissatisfaction with abuse of power by London and especially Westminster and the City
          3) Scotland was the strongest voter for remain in the whole UK, which gives them an excellent position for a fairer referendum than the last one
          4) This seems to be viewed – by some at least – as in part a protest vote against the establishment and the way the establishment have abused their power, and that the power structures have to be reformed
          5) There seems to have been a clear signal from depressed areas in favour of leave, which can also be interpreted as a protest vote in part.

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