The Truth About Chilcot 145

The death toll from the horrific recent Iraq bombings has risen over 250. If Blair had not been absolutely determined to attack Iraq on the basis of a knowing lie about WMD, they would be alive now, along with millions of other dead. ISIS would never have taken control of territory in Iraq and Syria. Al Qaeda would never have grown from an organisation of a few hundred to one of tens of thousands. We would not have a completely destabilised Middle East and a massive refugee crisis.

Do not expect a full truth and a full accounting from the Chilcot panel of establishment trusties today. Remember who they are.

Sir John Chilcot

Member of the Butler Inquiry which whitewashed the fabrication of evidence of Iraqi WMD. The fact is that, beyond doubt, the FCO and SIS knew there were no Iraqi WMD. In the early 1990’s I had headed the FCO Section of the Embargo Surveillance Centre, tasked with monitoring and preventing Iraqi attempts at weapons procurement. In 2002 I was on a course for newly appointed Ambassadors alongside Bill Patey, who was Head of the FCO Department dealing with Iraq. Bill is a fellow Dundee University graduate and is one of the witnesses before the Iraq Inquiry this morning. I suggested to him that the stories we were spreading about Iraqi WMD could not be true. He laughed and said “Of course not Craig, it’s bollocks”. I had too many other conversations to mention over the next few months, with FCO colleagues who knew the WMD scare to be false.

Yet Chilcot was party to a Butler Inquiry conclusion that the Iraqi WMD scare was an “Honest mistake”. That a man involved on a notorious whitewash is assuring us that this will not be one, is bullshit.

Sir Roderick Lyne

A good friend and former jogging partner of Alastair Campbell.

Last time I actually spoke to him we were both Ambassadors and on a British frigate moored on the Neva in St Petersburg. Colleagues may have many words to describe Rod Lyne, some of them complimentary, but “open-minded” is not one of them.

If the Committee were to feel that the Iraq War was a war crime, then Rod Lyne would be accusing himself. As Ambassador to Moscow he was active in trying to mitigate Russian opposition to the War. He personally outlined to the Russian foreign minister the lies on Iraqi WMD. There was never the slightest private indication that Lyne had any misgivings about the war.

From Uzbekistan we always copied Moscow in on our reporting telegrams, for obvious reasons. Lyne responded to my telegrams protesting at the CIA’s use of intelligence from the Uzbek torture chambers, by requesting not to be sent such telegrams.

Sir Lawrence Freedman

Lawrence Freedman is the most appalling choice of all. The patron saint of “Justified” wars of aggression, and exponent of “Wars of Choice” and “Humanitarian Intervention”. He is 100% parti pris.

Here is part of his evidence to the House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution on 18 January 2006:

The basic idea here is that our armed forces prepared for what we might call wars of necessity, that the country was under an existential threat so if you did not respond to that threat then in some very basic way our vital interests, our way of life, would be threatened, and when you are looking at certain such situations, these are great national occasions. The difficulty we are now facing with wars of choice is that these are discretionary and the government is weighing a number of factors against each other. I mentioned Sierra Leone but Rwanda passed us by, which many people would think was an occasion when it would have been worth getting involved. There was Sudan and a lot of things have been said about Darfur but not much has happened…

…Iraq was a very unusual situation where it was not an ongoing conflict. If we had waited things would not have been that much different in two or three months’ time and so, instead of responding either to aggression by somebody else, as with the Falklands, or to developing humanitarian distress, as in the Balkans, we decided that security considerations for the future demanded immediate action.”

Sir Martin Gilbert (died in course of Inquiry)

Very right wing historian whose biography of Churchill focussed on Gilbert’s relish for war and was otherwise dull. (Roy Jenkins’ Churchill biography is infinitely better). Gilbert was not only rabidly pro-Iraq War, he actually saw Blair as Churchill.

Although it can easily be argued that George W Bush and Tony Blair face a far lesser challenge than Roosevelt and Churchill did – that the war on terror is not a third world war – they may well, with the passage of time and the opening of the archives, join the ranks of Roosevelt and Churchill. Their societies are too divided today to deliver a calm judgment, and many of their achievements may be in the future: when Iraq has a stable democracy, with al-Qaeda neutralised, and when Israel and the Palestinian Authority are independent democracies, living side by side in constructive economic cooperation.

Baroness Prashar

A governor of the FCO institution the Ditchley Foundation – of which the Director is Sir Jeremy Greenstock, the UK Ambassador to the UN who presented the lies about Iraqi WMD and was intimately involved in the lead in to war. So very much another cosy foreign policy insider.

So, in short, the committee – all hand-picked by Gordon Brown – could not have been better picked to ensure a whitewash.

Over 50% of the British population were against the Iraq War, including for example many scores of distinguished ex-Ambassadors, many military men and many academics. Yet Brown chose nobody on the Inquiry who had been against the Iraq War, while three out of five were active and open supporters of the war.

Do not expect to see this truth reflected in any of the mainstream media coverage.

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145 thoughts on “The Truth About Chilcot

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  • Republicofscotland

    What about former military commander Sir Michael Rose, who has been advising families who lost loved ones in the unjust war, that they should prepare to launch a civil action against Blair?

  • nevermind

    Well said Craig. We must not forget that those honourable enough resign, such as Mrs. Wilmshurst. Further, the majority of our EU partners warned us and advised against such folly, so who was Blair to know it all better?

    Those culpable of wilful planned death and destruction must face justice if its not an empty word now.

    • Anon1

      Alternatively, if you want to keep telling us that it was European governments “our EU partners” who advised against the war, there is a strong correlation between those who prosecuted the Iraq war and wanted us to remain in the the EU.

      • Why be Ordinary

        Only among the British – in Europe it was those most “europhile” who refused to join in.

  • Martinned

    Good to know you’ve pinned your flag to the mast prior to publication. That’s at least better than after. Whitewash it is, might as well stop worrying about it.

      • Ben Monad

        He’s no worse than Pinochet so, very likely true. It was true for Madame Pinochet, er I mean Thatcher.

  • Peter Fleming

    What utter bollocks, Craig. : Spleen venting with no evidence to show cobbled together in not very well written hyperbole, may I be excused for saying? What utter unfeasable bollocks. Best wishes

    • deepgreenpuddock

      This is not really a comment that you have made and you are not excused for it.
      The article is about the selection of people to sit on the enquiry panel. I think it is highly relevant to understanding the content.
      Using the word ‘bollocks’ once, might be OK on this kind of forum, but twice? And it is ‘unfeasible’.

  • Mick McNulty

    The excuses used to take us to war – that Saddam could launch missile strikes against us in 45 minutes, and the Weapons Inspectors were being hoodwinked etc – were so preposterous that I don’t believe anybody was stupid enough to believe them. Those who say they believed them do so because they wanted war, and are as much warmongers as everybody involved in it. The excuse of being misled by the Dodgy Dossier is pure nonsense, because to be fooled by that comic they’d have to be absolute morons.

    • Mick McNulty

      Sorry about the double post, I didn’t think the first one went through.

      • bevin

        Your point was worth repeating. We are talking now of the bulk of the PLP who ‘knew better’ than their Constituencies and the bulk of the people. Then as now.

  • John Spencer-Davis

    On the evidence coming out at the moment, it seems that Chilcot, while perhaps not as harsh as many people would prefer, is not quite the whitewash that Craig has been predicting.

    I seem to remember that, back when Craig did his last big posting on this, maybe over a year ago now, I said that it would be best to wait and see what the report actually said before jumping to conclusions; and also that I had an idea that it was not going to be a total whitewash.

    I don’t purr often. But I would like just to have a very, very little purr at this moment, and stretch out in comfort before I start washing my fur clean.

    • Terry B.

      I guess the moral is that when evaluating a report about rushing to judgement on the basis of incomplete information and firm personal convictions, one should not rush to judgement on the basis of incomplete information and firm personal convictions.

    • Ba'al Zevul

      Agree. Seems to have been pretty considered, with due scepticism attached to the personal interviews, and unanimity on some key points. Pre-release speculation sppears to have been based on what was released to Maxwellised participants, and this was very far from the overall conclusions. I would expect an attempt to impeach Blair – both premeditation and intentional deception are confirmed. Also the clearly demonstrated prior intention to conduct regime change as the principal objective, while telling Parliament and the public repeatedly that this was not the purpose. There’s an interesting reference to Blair’s discussion with Bush of the possibility of working the perceived AQ threat into the smokescreen – if Hussein achieved nothing else, it was to keep the parts of Iraq over which he had jurisdiction free of AQ.

      Reading Craig’s view above, it’s almost incredible that the enquiry came to the conclusions it did. Bearing in mind, that unlike Blair, or any of we lucky commenters here, Chilcot had firmly to substantiate everything in the report, it’s pretty solid. The response of our leaders to its findings probably won’t be solid at all, obviously, and perhaps our ire would be better concentrated on them.

      • Ba'al Zevul

        Campbell’s just been wheeled in to the BBC (phoned from Spain, in fact) to explain that Blair believed in fairies, therefore fairies exist. Second against the wall, come the revolution, professional liar and shit.

    • charles drake

      Chilcot, while perhaps not as harsh as many people would prefer, is not quite the whitewash that Craig has been predicting.

      yes sir mr bluesman
      tough talk indeed with added oxygen bleachings 15 books millions of tough lessons will be processed and learned.
      hurrah for chill pill alls well with the world.

      blair is a privy council lifer with full physical club protection in the future a blair critique should be seen in the same light as antisemitism.

    • K Crosby

      There are some harsh words in it but what will become of them? If nothing, it’s a higher quality whitewash, not the vindication of honesty that you propose.

  • deepgreenpuddock

    The questions on this matter are interminable. Brown’s choice of truth seekers is notable for the complete corruption of character
    One fascinating peripheral or tangential aspect of this story is the direction of travel of Gordon Brown. My interest here is very personal because I have a direct insight into his background and political growth. Similar age, and coming from the same geographical area, attending same or very similar schools, mixing with many of the same people during childhood and teens. First girlfriend a class mate of his. Edinburgh Uni-when he was in his student pomp. I also knew Alistair Darling, although only as an acquaintance/occasional conversation basis.
    One of the abiding reflections of these acquaintanceships, is that I was quite incrediblynaive in comparison to the sense, n those two, of what i will call ‘planned and instilled personal purpose’ -a pre-dispositon to understanding the steps-(baby ones at first of course), that must have been somehow impressed upon these youthful political aspirants to high office. What is very compelling about my memory is that both were very self-aware. Not ‘brilliant’, not actually notably insightful, or intellectually devastating-(I remember discussing political matters with them, if somewhat causally and they had acquired a few reflexive responses through being rehearsed ) but it was clear that although they had, just like most of their peers, clod encrusted feet of philosophical clay, prone to clumsy gaffes and youthful clangers, snotty nosed prejudices and snobberies, and incomplete understandings, self-aggrandising pursuits and hollow confidence, they felt themselves to be anointed. It now seems so critical and yet so shallow-almost non-existent at the time but still, it was there.

    it is that sense of anointment that fascinates me- and also the utter absence of it in no lesser individuals (indeed sometimes much more impressive souls), and the sense that there is something deeply disturbing about this pre-dsposition for power and position. Why does it feel so false?
    It is the great conundrum of human experience- that of the knowledge that we are all made of the same stuff, we all have much the same potentials, and the near certain inner knowledge of all those who may choose to think it, that those who ‘rule’ are driven by same vanities, the same inner doubts, the same failures of virtue, the same ugly quest for importance and significance, the same feeble desire to be loved, and the same need to be admired and revered, prone to the same failures of character within whatever sphere(s) we live in-and yet -the rewards of position in the world turn out to be applied so casually and with such indifference to the absence of compelling virtue and integrity.

    The curiosity here is that I am compelled to see that the the pursuits of these anointed are indeed so base. Brown-a failure in compassion except of the easiest, sentimental kind, a failure in judgement with his empowerment of crooks and bankers in exchange for their loose change to allow him to appease his sanctimonious appeals to virtue, a failure in (political) courage in despising the electorates rights to choose, and a huge moral failure-as the willing treasurer of the Iraq dead-and all so gallingly visible to the ‘unanointed’, such as we, and despite having attained the prize he so wanted. The power to command his own respect has evaded him, and he has inherited contempt and derision.

    This is surely a poisoned dart that inserts itself straight to the heart- to be aware of this failure-but to hold on grimly to such personal aggrandisements as were on offer.
    The same with Darling-a moral failure in most respects , now skulking awkwardly as a (discredited) banking money grubber- having been separated from any sense of value to those who he would have liked to have the love of, except that internal to himself, achieved through what now seems so like a craven pretence of public service, and the judicious deployment of empty words to ‘please’ the crowd,to convince the masses, to say the right things, without himself being righteous. So ironic, that such rewards are so cruelly gained, and so cruelly barbed for pricking self.

    • Mulga Mumblebrain

      Excellent insights deepgreenpuddock. These types of driven, let’s be frank, narcissists, if rising from the lower 99% of what we laughably still call ‘society'(despite its despatch by Thatcher)are eminently manipulable. The history of Obama, talent-spotted at college by a teacher, who recommended him to members of her tribe’s elite in Chicago, an elite who then employed and later launched and financed his political career, is even more glaring. No doubt, at any time, thousands of these puppets are being steered towards positions of power in politics, business, the MSM etc, and are constantly monitored for loyalty and reliability. Any deviation or hesitation in following orders, and the gilded career, and the riches awaiting loyal service, evaporate. Such manipulations are as old as mankind, and they even occur in the animal kingdom.

  • Colin

    OK, while the Chilcot Report is about the UK and its (shameful) involvement in the Iraq War, lets not forget that even before Bush & co won the 2000 presidential election, they were quietly plotting to invade Iraq. Was this because they felt the first Gulf War hadn’t achieved their unspoken objectives? Or was it to boost the profits and share prices of Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Grumman Northrop, BAe Systems, Blackwater, and many other companies owned by the MIC? I suspect it was mainly about profits.

    • N_

      Yes Colin, of course it was about profit, and we won’t ever get any “Sirs” or “Lords” “inquiring” into that!

      Have you seen General Richard Shirreff’s recent book, 2017: War with Russia? He recently retired as NATO’s deputy “Supreme Allied Commander in Europe”. For British top brass, seeped in the culture of “cracking on”, he whinges like a crybaby. On practically every page, he pushes the line that the poor old armed forces are being deprived of weapons by the civilian government who don’t want to spend the money they should. For him, it’s as if an army fights on money spent on weapons. Never mind training. Never mind morale. Never mind the culture of command. They are all ineffably superb. Best in the world. Mustn’t ever say anything about them. That would be tantamount to treason. The only problem, this idiot reckons (and remember what high office he held), is that the government isn’t signing big enough contracts with arms companies. All the civilian government, in its nature effete and soft, should do, is spend lots and lots and lots of money on weapons. Then the British armed forces would be able to win wars anywhere in the world. Like yeah, right. What a tool!

  • N_

    I thought this was interesting from Lawrence Freedman:

    “If we had waited things would not have been that much different in two or three months’ time and so, instead of responding either to aggression by somebody else, as with the Falklands, or to developing humanitarian distress, as in the Balkans, we decided that security considerations for the future demanded immediate action.”

    Didn’t this smug arsehole learn any logic at Oxford? Or at King’s College, London? And he calls himself an expert in “strategy”.

    He says if they’d waited, things wouldn’t have changed, therefore security considerations required immediate action.

    Spot the logical error.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford aka The Biscuit

    Let’s face it, Anglo-American government simply sucks, as yesterday’s developments demonstrated beyond all doubt.

    Chilcot did not find evidence of former PM Tony Blair committing any crimes in the lead-up to, and execution of the ouster of Saddam Hussein.

    That’s up to a court – as it has always beern, he says – to determine.

    So, he just essentially confirmed what most of us already knew, so what was the need of his inquiry?

    And FBI Director James Comey, the nation’s highest law enforcer, stated that while former SoS Hillary Clinton behaved similarly, there was not even enough evidence to recommend her indictment.

    These states are nothing more than super banana regimes.

    • Ben Monad

      If these bananas were in say, Guatemala, there would be no need for the velvet glove on an iron fist. Velvet inquiries are the speciality of the West because those citizens operate under the illusion they live in democratic republics.

  • Clydebuilt

    Thought Corbyn was disappointing…… No call for Bliar’s head. Is this part of a deal with Labour to get his MP’s off his back

    • charles drake

      listen to blairs reply it would seem a point for point rebuttal.
      when did yo blair receive his copy it is impossible that it was this morning.
      this is a privy council matter what oath has corbers given to the privy what agreement to
      tom fat bloke watson the bloater that was getting to the bottom of westminster child wrangling rings.

      whitewash with free xtra oxygen white booster
      an engine works better when well greased.
      yo blair has been speaking for 5 times longer than camoron
      how many writers over what time frame.

    • Spaull

      From the BBC website:

      “Going to war without a UN mandate was “profoundly dangerous”, Mr Corbyn said, adding: “All those who took the decisions laid bare in the Chilcot report must face up to the consequences of their actions, whatever they may be.””

      That does not sound like pulled punches to me.

      • charles drake

        Otto Adolf Eichmann do you think given the choice of a cozy privy council chilcot 6 year stilton and sherry chit chat
        full of tough talks and lessons learned talking shops

        or an invitation to a tel aviv hanging hardly a sophies choice?
        who killed more people that should be a question and a learned lesson lessons

    • John Spencer-Davis

      His own MPs heckled him and one yelled that he should sit down and shut up. Obviously they would not have done that if they thought what he was saying was bland. As usual, he was reasonable but forthright.

      What sort of pillock shouts at his own party leader in the House of Commons so much that he has to be reprimanded by the Speaker?

  • Bob Smith

    It will be some weeks before I have had time to plough through the whole report, which is available free online. The exec summary makes for interesting reading and I don’t think the report is the whitewash many said it would be. It leaves enough openings for legal action and further parliamentary investigation. Based on the exec summary I am left with one main question and that is why we went onto be involved in Afghanistan when such involvement would leave us so stretched in Iraq. Perhaps another 4 year enquiry could provide the answer. For those of you who had there minds already made up the report seems irrelevant. After all, we are still debating why we entered WW1 a hundred years ago and I suspect in another 100 years the real reasons for invading Iraq will still be a matter of contention.

    • deepgreenpuddock

      Well mentioned(Afghanistan). Again, it is clear that intervention has backfired. Far from bringing civilisation and all the good things of the west, it has made things worse-more corrupt, more inclined to medievalism, poorer, more troubled by warlordism and fundamentalism.
      There s a telling memory i have. Right at the start of the military action against Afghanistan, there was a call for international money to carry out restoration and rebuilding of the then ‘barely functional failed state, after decades of neglect and abuse. (I seem to remember figures such as 20 billion. This was after 9/11).
      A number of years later, after much blood spilled ad treasure wasted ,and much comment, it turned out that virtually none of these pledges had materialised. There WAS expenditure on military infrastructure but there was virtually no relief of the difficult harsh conditions for the civilian population. It was the playground of the internecine warfare between allies such as Pakistan and the US and India.
      Almost any reading on this topic reveals the most despicable of motives and actions by the so called civilised west or utterly pointless expensive gestures.

    • Bright Eyes

      Get it right Bob Smith. ‘We’ were already in Afghanistan.

      Afgjanistan – Operation Enduring Freedom LOL 2001-2014

      Iraq. 40 countries joined the coalition invasion in 2003. Withdrawal -2011

  • charles drake

    i think many like most are being unfair in this
    certainly lowly types had hoped that they had an invitation
    to a beheading.
    this was most certainly hare brained.
    tory blair had belief in his method had proud scotch cambull alistair
    for information retrieval.
    if these fine best in show men where let down,
    by the men in grey suits why should they be guilty of anything apart from beliefs in the human spirit.
    tory blair has been investigated for over 6 years by fellow privy hedge council skull bones members.
    do you not think over drinks and luncheon stilton cigar and cadiz sheery that smoking guns would not be found.

    as someone myself who has had to investigate fellow lodge club members do not think because they are club members that the thrusting spunk and vigor for the chase would be any less than if stranger investigated stranger.
    in some ways the shame of friends and secret society members investigating each other is more brutal and complete than a 6 month show trial at the hague.
    do not under estimate the removal of privy council luncheon vouchers on yo blair and family.
    yo blair like menzes,sturgeon,salmon cameron all sides hidden behind the sacred privy
    privy council is hotel californication check out sure no leavings.
    the next 8 hours should be spent processing the 16 books of leveson enquires chilcot the lessons .
    lessons that are already being input into computer and will be processed and learning for all times.
    do not under esitimate the power of learning lessons

    on the subject of iraqi it is certainly sad that are construction industry have not been allowed the contracts promised.
    on the subject of depleted uranium munitions new reports from the round up ready group suggest that depleted uranium in trace amounts is an immune booster to the human carcass.
    as for a billion years of genetic mutations those strange looking folks can join the circus.

    it was refreshing that gilligans island today and the girl cameron helped support lodge member tory blair in his time of need.

    in the short term blair he will be back soon enough full of vigor maybe a holiday with cliff richard or branson island.
    or quiet stay and one of the 26 homes in the blair portfolio.

    be assured during the coming clinton sturgeon and may wars in syria and ukrainia and russia we will have the british people baying howling for foreign blood it will be done properly next time.
    we learned the lessons years ago that is why in libya today they throw flowers at are sas and mi6 g4s.
    it is a only because of are unique frank kitson gang counter gang skill set that has allowed us to install a libyan central bank under fire for extraction of the oil and profit back london,france,newyork and tel aviv does that not show commitment.

    mass murder or accident
    iraq is long long time ago pick up the pieces iraqi i say and invest in mays britain.
    invest in are new jerusalem

    or else

  • bevin

    “Reading Craig’s view above, it’s almost incredible that the enquiry came to the conclusions it did. ‘

    Not really. Craig is telling us, essentially, that the panel and its chair are clever, careerist and cynical time servers. These are people who would sell their mothers for a small reward-who have already sold out their compatriots for a pension- and have no difficulty at all in tossing a former boss under the bus.
    In fact I expect that they rather enjoyed it.
    And now having astonished the world and established new reputations for wisdom and integrity, they will be thinking of ways to cash in on them.

  • bevin

    I posted this link last night, well after most people had gone to bed. It is worth viewing because it indicates the sort of ideas that are bubbling up in the Trump inclined Republican party this year.
    Which is far from being off topic.
    The candidate, challenging McCain in the primary, makes a case which is considerably more radical than is expected from the stereotype neo-con republican.

    (This site is very slow today.)

  • Republicofscotland

    No doubt Blair’s vast PR team, will push the line that the intelligence and information they received regarding WMD’s in Iraq, appeared legitimate at the time. However it’s now public knowledge that Blair and Bush agreed to topple Saddam Hussein a year before the invasion, though Blair denies the claim.

    We left Iraq in a far worse state than when we invaded it, what does that say about us, as opposed to Saddam ?

    One could rightly argue that the legacy of our actions are still costing the lives of innocent Iraqi people, by aiding in the rise of Daesh, who claimed responsibility for the hundreds of deaths in Baghdad on Sunday.

    As much as I’d like to see Blair behind bars, and Bush as well, I fear nothing much will come of the Chilcot report. All we can really hope for, is that we somehow learn a lesson from the war in Iraq.

    However I’d doubt we will, war is far to profitable to let ethics get in the way.

  • Republicofscotland

    From Tony Blair.

    “Statement from Rt Hon Tony Blair on Chilcot Report”

    “Responding to the publication of the Chilcot Report Mr Blair said:“The report should lay to rest allegations of bad faith, lies or deceit. Whether people agree or disagree with my decision to take military action against Saddam Hussein; I took it in good faith and in what I believed to be the best interests of the country.”

    “I note that the report finds clearly: – That there was no falsification or improper use of Intelligence (para 876 vol 4) – No deception of Cabinet (para 953 vol 5) – No secret commitment to war whether at Crawford Texas in April 2002 or elsewhere (para 572 onwards vol 1) The inquiry does not make a finding on the legal basis for military action but finds that the Attorney General had concluded there was such a lawful basis by 13th March 2003 (para 933 vol 5)”

    ” However the report does make real and material criticisms of preparation, planning, process and of the relationship with the United States.”

    ” These are serious criticisms and they require serious answers. I will respond in detail to them later this afternoon.”

    ” I will take full responsibility for any mistakes without exception or excuse.I will at the same time say why, nonetheless, I believe that it was better to remove Saddam Hussein and why I do not believe this is the cause of the terrorism we see today whether in the Middle East or elsewhere in the world. Above all I will pay tribute to our Armed Forces.”

    ” I will express my profound regret at the loss of life and the grief it has caused the families, and I will set out the lessons I believe future leaders can learn from my experience.”

    Reading the above paragraphs, one does get the distinct feeling that the Chilcot report lets Blair off the hook.

  • Doug Scorgie

    Peter Fleming
    July 6, 2016 at 11:24

    “What utter bollocks, Craig. : Spleen venting with no evidence to show cobbled together in not very well written hyperbole, may I be excused for saying? What utter unfeasable bollocks.”


    You weren’t on the Chilcot committee as well were you Peter?

  • Ben Monad

    The Chilcot inquiry into the Iraq report has today published 28 letters which passed between the two leaders
    A note sent soon after September 11 shows Blair advised Bush to tackle states with weapons of mass destruction
    In July 2002, around nine months before the war started, Mr Blair told the President ‘I will be with you, whatever’
    He set out a vision for new ‘world order’ in which he and the President ‘unite the world’ around ‘a global agenda’
    The messages show Blair orchestrating PR campaigns to trying to portray the invasion in the best possible light

    Prosecution could center on the Niger Forgeries as this has a paper trail. At the minimum, ‘reckless disregard’ for millions dead and disfigured. It’s not a crime to be a shameless blow-up doll, but maybe it should be.

  • Republicofscotland

    Turning to another facet of the war in Iraq, one has to question the readiness of the British army to invade Iraq.

    Harrowing stories have remained in the minds of those who lost love ones, such as Reg Keys whose son Tom and his troop the Red Caps (Royal Military Police) had only fifty rounds each and no grenades, and were ill equipped to fight insurgents.

    Tom and his fellow soldiers paid with their lives, after their 50 rounds of ammo ran out.

    It has been claimed a Hillsborough style cover up was put in place by army officers over the deaths.

    It has been reported that most of 179 British personnel that died in Iraq, did so after the invasion. Could it have been the case, that the British army and government, thought to themselves job done, and a level of negligence and complacency crept in ?

  • Robert Low

    What a lot of bollocks. I am no flag-waver for Tony Blair – just the opposite – but my disgust with him lies more to do with what he might have achieved as a Labour PM and what he singularly failed to do in favour of promoting himself. But to say ‘these people would be alive but for the war he started’ is disingenuous. Yes, they might. Thousands of others might not be – Saddam was no stranger to the mass killing of Kurds and anyone else who got in his way. As for ‘do not expect a full etc etc’ – what you mean is, ‘do not expect blame to be apportioned to any individual/s, particularly Tony Blair’, which is what all the torch and pitchfork howlers want. Chilcot’s report was never going to do that. Wasn’t the brief. It will merely take the pin out of the grenade and throw it – the explosion will be left to people like, well …. you.

    • charles drake

      anthony lynton
      tony lynton
      charles lynton
      charles blair

      when you have dark secrets men in a positions of authority and power opens one selves up to blackmail.
      nobody joins the power club without audio,video,stills on file for a rainy mi5 mossad day.

    • Clark

      Why Iraq? Why not Uzbekistan, Bahrain, or even Israel? These countries abuse their people and make war on their neighbouring countries, but they’re all allies. The answer of course is oil; hydrocarbons. If a country has US or UK military bases, it’s an ally. If it doesn’t, it’s “run by a dictator” and a candidate for “humanitarian intervention”:

      The US and UK have no right to take the law into their own hands. All countries must be equal under international law, equals within the UN.

  • lysias

    Saddam killed a lot fewer people per year than were killed — whether by the Allies or in the civil war that the Allies caused — in Iraq per year since the Western invasion.

    • lysias

      And by far the greatest number of deaths that Saddam caused were in the war he launched against Iran, with Western encouragement and support.

  • Hans Adler

    It looks as if the overall thrust of the report may not be as bad as expected, though of course the devil may be in the details. We will see – or not, depending on whether any critical omissions can be detected or not.

    Something similar once happened with a German report on Germans expelled after the Second World War from formerly German territories. In 1951, a commission consisting primarily of distinguished historians who had planned and/or helped to execute Nazi atrocities, was tasked with describing the plight of German expellees using impeccable scientific methods. This was hoped to create enough sympathy for Germany to be returned certain territories that had become Polish after the war.

    Subsequent volumes of the report became increasingly clear that the plight of the German expellees was simply a natural effect of worse things that (often other) Germans had done before based on the Lebensraum ideology put forward by the report’s very authors. The fifth volume appeared in 1961. A sixth volume planned to contain a summary and overview was cancelled. By then it was clear that neither was the original goal attainable at all, nor would the report have been able to contribute towards that goal.

    It was by no means as biased as one would have expected knowing who was on the committee. This may be an example of a general phenomenon, where trying to write a biased report that is supposed to just look unbiased slowly reforms its authors and ultimately results in a relatively fair report.

    • Trowbridge H. Ford aka The Biscuit

      Think the apparent omission of Kelly’s death in the Chilcot Inquiry report is most damning.

      Kelly’s death, whether it was an assassination or suicide, was completely tied to the Iraqi debacle as Blair demonstrated by taking over its investigation, and refusing to have a proper inquest after the obvious Hutton cover up.

      It refused to even identify his likely assassins – i.e., the four on that boat, who stayed over night on the Thames near where his body was found, and stayed until it was determined that he had finally died.

      His murder investigation is even worse than the Warren Commission.

      • lysias

        Amd when Kelly died in whatever way, Tony Blair was in Blair House across the street from the White House in D.C. (and communicating with it by an underground tunnel) being “entertained” by male prostitute Guckert/Gannon.

        • michael norton

          Dr. Kelly used his duff arm to cut an insignificant vein with a very blunt pruning knife, after downing a couple of mild painkillers, then after he died he moved himself off the fence and lay down.

          • michael norton

            Almost no blood was found at the scene
            but apparently he slashed his wrists and bled to death.
            Just saying.

          • Mulga Mumblebrain

            michael, it was all SO ludicrous and unbelievable, but that’s just par for the course. When the Rightwing MSM is as venal, dishonest and morally corrupt as that of the West, these things happen, routinely.

  • glenn_uk

    Shame nobody put to Blair at the press conference something along the lines of, “You have become an extremely rich man as a result of your time in office, but most particularly because of the Iraq war. Should you not share this money among the victims of your war and their families?”

  • bevin

    “But to say ‘these people would be alive but for the war he started’ is disingenuous. Yes, they might. Thousands of others might not be – Saddam was no stranger to the mass killing of Kurds and anyone else who got in his way.”

    A common feature of all of Saddam’s mass killings was the use in them of materiel supplied by his western allies. This includes the gas used against the Kurds and the Iranians. Without European and US assistance the massacres would have been physically impossible.

    As to your point that Blair betrayed Labour and that is what really matters: he certainly did betray the electorate and the party but both were all of a piece with his unprincipled foreign policy (For Sale) and the dictatorial tactics he used to exclude any but sycophants from his councils, seats in Parliament or influence within the Labour Party.

    The daily carnage in Iraq is one of the bloodier chickens returning to roost, but so also is the public’s, quite proper, distrust of ‘expertise’ and the mutiny among the appartchiki in the Labour Party

  • Habbabkuk (la vita e' bella!)


    I am away but I did speak to someone in the UK this afternoon who told me that the report was far – very far – from being a whitewash, whether of Blair or quite a few of the other actors involved.

    Is that correct and would you like to give us your current view (ie, your view at 21h13 BST)?

    • oblivious

      Not far enough away and you didn’t need to speak to someone in the UK, it’s all over the internet.

  • Sam

    The real history leading up to the Iraq war is briefly:
    1979 – Islamic revolution succeeded in Iran. Israel’s loyal friend the Shah is ousted and Ayatollah Khomeini becomes supreme leader. The new regime in Iran hands the Israeli embassy in Tehran to the PLO. Irate Israel demands western intervention. The west, using the good offices of Jordan’s then King Hussein, persuaded Saddam Hussein that Iran was in a state of disarray and the time was ripe for Iraq to recover ceded Arab land – the ceded land deal was signed a few years earlier by the Shah and none other than Saddam in person in his then capacity as vice president . King Hussein assured Saddam that he will have the full support of the west which was ready to supply whatever military equipment/weaponry was needed for the venture. Saddam was naïve enough to believe that the west were his allies and embarked on a war against Iran which lasted ten years, at the end of which, Iraq declared victory.
    1989 – The Iran/Iraq war ended with Iraq emerging in possession of a huge arsenal of diverse weaponry and its troops battle-hardened. Israel had the jitters fearing that Saddam will then turn his attention to Palestine. The West promised Israel that it will deal with that potential threat.

    Above are historical facts which are not common knowledge to most westerners. If one wants to investigate a crime, the most basic question to ask: cui bono? You decide!

    • Laguerre

      Saddam was never naive. Not even in his youth. No doubt he thought that invading a country in disarray would give him the oil-fields. But there is no evidence that others helped in the decision.

      • Sam

        There were oilfields in the area ceded to Iran. If Saddam was not naive, he would have complied with UNSC resolution asking him to evacuate from Kuwait, thereby denying the west of the casus belli for destroying his country. Had he done so, he would have had mice ruling Kuwait who know what he can do!

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