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Blair: "We'd Have Invaded Iraq Anyway"  
User currently offlineKaitak From Ireland, joined Aug 1999, 12593 posts, RR: 34
Posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 2070 times:

Tony Blair, the former British PM, has said on a television interview to be aired tomorrow (13 Dec) that Britain and the US would have invaded Iraq anyway, to remove Saddam Hussein, even if there had been no evidence of WMDs.

http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/europe.../britain.blair.iraq.war/index.html

Now this is very interesting - and disturbing. The whole premise of the invasion, I thought (and I'm sure a lot of people thought) was that Iraq had WMDs which were capable of being deployed against the UK in 45 minutes and regardless of what one thought of that claim (I never thought much of it - the guy (SH) was evil, not stupid), it had at least an element of self- defence about it, however unrealistic the threat.

Now, however, we see that the invasion would have gone ahead anyway; the objective was to remove SH and his two sons. And as we can see, things have improved a whole lot in the ME since that happened. Now, the irony is that Iraq has become such a mess that people are looking for a ruthless, unscrupulous bastard who is tyrannical enough to hold the whole country together, through fear. Where can we find such a guy? "Er ... he's the guy we deposed and hanged ..."

The result of the invasion is that the main threat to stability in the ME - Iran - is now a lot stronger and of course, Al Qaeda is alive and kicking. And 2,000+ US, British and other troops dead (and thousands of Iraqis). Well done Tony (and George).

Former PM Blair will be questioned at the Chilcot inquiry in the new year about the lead-up to war and although this is not a court of law, in the sense that Blair cannot be convicted, the inquiry can rule on the legality of the war.

46 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineScorpio From Belgium, joined Oct 2001, 5052 posts, RR: 44
Reply 1, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 2049 times:

Don't see how this is so surprising, it's what we've known for a while now: Bush and Blair didn't invade Iraq because it had WMDs, Iraq 'had WMDs' because Bush and Blair wanted to invade it. The only really surprising this here is that Blair now actually admitted it.

User currently offlineRara From Germany, joined Jan 2007, 2168 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 2040 times:

Yeah, nothing new really. Bush will admit it as well, come time.


Samson was a biblical tough guy, but his dad Samsonite was even more of a hard case.
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 3, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 2036 times:



Quoting Kaitak (Thread starter):
Former PM Blair will be questioned at the Chilcot inquiry in the new year about the lead-up to war and although this is not a court of law, in the sense that Blair cannot be convicted, the inquiry can rule on the legality of the war.

This reminds me that in another thread I mentioned Andrew Wilkie resigned due to his not agreeing with the intell conclusions and I forgot the resignations of Robin Cook and Claire Short. Praise to them for their principled stand too. And shame on Blair in part for his unjustified war but even more for participating when it was known there were no adequate plans for after the war. Shame too for sitting idly by while the US disbanded the Iraq army and allowed the place to be looted.


User currently offlineAirPacific747 From Denmark, joined May 2008, 2475 posts, RR: 24
Reply 4, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1997 times:

Well it wasn't the best decision in the world, but at least we got rid of a dictator.

Let's wait a few more years after International troops have pulled out and then we'll see the true outcome of the effort in Iraq.


User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7719 posts, RR: 21
Reply 5, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1983 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 4):
but at least we got rid of a dictator.

Are you referring to Tony Blair? His disgusting comments confirm what we already knew - that the opinion of the country was going to be ignored regardless of what happened and regardless of which pathetic excuses he used to try and deceive us. the man makes me sick.



✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
User currently offlineNoUFO From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 7966 posts, RR: 12
Reply 6, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1975 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 4):
Well it wasn't the best decision in the world, but at least we got rid of a dictator.

And then "we" abused and tortured prisoners in Abu Ghraib and Gitmo, rendering the only argument that speaks for the invasion moot.



I support the right to arm bears
User currently offlineGDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 13252 posts, RR: 77
Reply 7, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 1968 times:

Baroque, I would not give Claire Short too much credit, to national exasperation she 'agonised' in public about whether she should resign or not, thinking that he staying in her post would help the situation on the ground.
Or as one commentator put it, oh for god's sake someone shoot her!

This, like much else on the build up to war, was hilariously parodied in the sublime film In The Loop , a spin off from the equally brilliant BBC political satire The Thick Of It.
In the movie, unlike the fictional 'Department Of Social Affairs', of the TV show, they have a real ministry, Claire Short's one, 'International Development'.
Actor Tom Hollander, playing the Secretary Of State who is out of his depth twists and turns about his potential for resignation.

Like the TV show, Peter Capaldi plays the ferocious, ultra sweary, hyper intense to the point of near madness, Government Press 'Enforcer', one Malcolm Tucker.
Inspired by Blair's own Alistair Campbell, whose impromptu appearance of Channel 4 News in July 2003 looked for all the world like an out take from a John Clesse meltdown in 'Fawtly Towers'.
This I suspect inspired the writer in creating Malcolm Tucker, also the revelation that in Washington in the Bush era, you had kids in their early 20's just out of higher education making major policies, this is alluded to strongly in the film too.

In The Loop also has a US cast, including an ultra arrogant, deceitful type with some of the appearance and a lot of a character of Donald Rumsfeld.
Also James Gandolfini of Sopranos fame, as a US general trying to halt the slide to war.

Great satire sometimes has more real truth than more conventional drama, although In The Loop is not set in 2003, the Mid East nation which is set for invasion is never named, I would rate it as good a way of looking back at the road to the Iraq war as anything else.
If you like your humour jet black.

Official trailer;
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQrqMkCuHqA
(A non sweary one. I'd probably get suspended or banned from here if I linked some of the others on You Tube, including ones like this also from the film production company).

[Edited 2009-12-12 09:03:54]

User currently offlineAirPacific747 From Denmark, joined May 2008, 2475 posts, RR: 24
Reply 8, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 1918 times:



Quoting RussianJet (Reply 5):
Are you referring to Tony Blair?

Don't be so silly.

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 6):
And then "we" abused and tortured prisoners in Abu Ghraib and Gitmo, rendering the only argument that speaks for the invasion moot.

Abu Ghraib itself has nothing to do with Iraq. Abu Ghraib was a mistake, but it doesn't change the fact that it was a good thing to get rid of Saddam.


User currently offlineSpringbok747 From Australia, joined Nov 2004, 4387 posts, RR: 10
Reply 9, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 1909 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 4):
but at least we got rid of a dictator.

Many Iraqis say life was better under Saddam. Seems they had some stability and didn't have to worry about being blown up by a random suicide bomber.

http://www.kuwaittimes.net/read_news.php?newsid=MzkyNDU1OTY5

Saddam's rule 'better' for gay Iraqis
Investigating reports of the murder and torture of gay men in Iraq, Ashley Byrne found that some gays found Saddam Hussein's dictatorship preferable to the threat of violence they face today. Some readers will find parts of his report disturbing.


http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8133639.stm



אני תומך בישראל
User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31702 posts, RR: 56
Reply 10, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 1905 times:

When Bush came into power,he named three countries in his Axis of evil qoute  Smile
regds
MEL.



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineOA412 From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 5373 posts, RR: 25
Reply 11, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 1899 times:



Quoting Scorpio (Reply 1):
Don't see how this is so surprising, it's what we've known for a while now: Bush and Blair didn't invade Iraq because it had WMDs, Iraq 'had WMDs' because Bush and Blair wanted to invade it. The only really surprising this here is that Blair now actually admitted it.

Exactly. It's what most of us have known since before the invasion happened. Bush and Blair were going to invade Iraq no matter what.

Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 4):
Well it wasn't the best decision in the world, but at least we got rid of a dictator.

And what about all of those other dictators still in power? If we were really interested in deposing dictators, we should have started with Saudi Arabia.



Hughes Airwest - Top Banana In The West
User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7719 posts, RR: 21
Reply 12, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 1889 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 8):
Quoting RussianJet (Reply 5):
Are you referring to Tony Blair?

Don't be so silly.

Begging your pardon, but totally ignoring the will of the people and forging ahead with your own silly plans in spite of such clear and massive opposition is precisely dictatorial behaviour. That's how it felt to me and millions of other UK voters. You may disagree, but kindly refrain from calling me silly.



✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
User currently offlineAirPacific747 From Denmark, joined May 2008, 2475 posts, RR: 24
Reply 13, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 1880 times:



Quoting Springbok747 (Reply 9):
Many Iraqis say life was better under Saddam. Seems they had some stability and didn't have to worry about being blown up by a random suicide bomber.

That's why we should wait till a few years after military has been pulled out of Iraq.

Quoting OA412 (Reply 11):
And what about all of those other dictators still in power? If we were really interested in deposing dictators, we should have started with Saudi Arabia.

Yes you're right.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 12):

Well it was a really silly comment, sorry to say so. He was elected by the British people. At the time Iraq was invaded, most people in the West was for the war believing Saddam had WMD. It's always easy pointing fingers later on. As I said, it wasn't the best decision, probably not worth it, but at least we got rid of Saddam.


User currently offlineOA412 From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 5373 posts, RR: 25
Reply 14, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 1870 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 13):
Well it was a really silly comment, sorry to say so. He was elected by the British people. At the time Iraq was invaded, most people in the West was for the war believing Saddam had WMD.

I'm with RussianJet on this one. You are right in that he was elected by the British people however, his disregard for the democratic process and his total disregard for popular opinion in his home country is indicative of dictatorial behavior. Now, was he a dictator on the level of Saddam Hussein? Of course not. But, Blair showed a lack of respect for the democratic process when he invaded Iraq. Furthermore, popular opinion in the UK and much of the West was actually against the war not for it.



Hughes Airwest - Top Banana In The West
User currently offlineAirPacific747 From Denmark, joined May 2008, 2475 posts, RR: 24
Reply 15, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 1857 times:



Quoting OA412 (Reply 14):
and his total disregard for popular opinion in his home country is indicative of dictatorial behavior. Now, was he a dictator on the level of Saddam Hussein? Of course not. But, Blair showed a lack of respect for the democratic process when he invaded Iraq. Furthermore, popular opinion in the UK and much of the West was actually against the war not for it.

Do you have any poll or anything to back up this statement? Yes he should have acted more accordingly to the public opinion if true, but you cant use it as an argument to call him a dictator. Is Obama also a dictator in everything he does, if his approval rating drops below what is needed to be re-elected in the next election?


User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21521 posts, RR: 53
Reply 16, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 1826 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 13):
At the time Iraq was invaded, most people in the West was for the war believing Saddam had WMD.

That is patently false the way you're using it as an excuse for the invasion.

Everybody was in agreement that Saddam had had WMDs once before, but after the first Gulf War these had been successfully dismantled by the UN inspectors.

What "most" informed people actually assumed was that Saddam might still or again have some WDMs.

This had a lot to do with advocating another round of UN inspections, but it had absolutely nothing to do with stabbing the UN inspectors in the back like Bush, Blair, Aznar and a few others did.

Your claim is completely, utterly and insultingly false and you should stop using it again after everything we know for sure today.


User currently offlineAirPacific747 From Denmark, joined May 2008, 2475 posts, RR: 24
Reply 17, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1818 times:



Quoting Klaus (Reply 16):
Everybody was in agreement that Saddam had had WMDs once before, but after the first Gulf War these had been successfully dismantled by the UN inspectors.

What "most" informed people actually assumed was that Saddam might still or again have some WDMs.

Sorry I think it is exactly what I said by saying that we believed he had WMD.

Quoting Klaus (Reply 16):
Your claim is completely, utterly and insultingly false and you should stop using it again after everything we know for sure today.

I don't see how it is.


User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7719 posts, RR: 21
Reply 18, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1796 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 13):
Well it was a really silly comment, sorry to say so.

No, it wasn't, but again - if you disagree then at least say so in respectful terms.

Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 13):
He was elected by the British people.

Yes, in other words ME and my countrymen. We did not elect that government so that they could lead us into wars willy-nilly and ignore the will of the people. The level of protest in the UK was unprecedented and I can honestly say that I know not one single person who was genuinely in favour of this nonsense.

Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 13):
most people in the West was for the war believing Saddam had WMD

That is not true.



✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
User currently offlineAirPacific747 From Denmark, joined May 2008, 2475 posts, RR: 24
Reply 19, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1791 times:

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 18):
No, it wasn't, but again - if you disagree then at least say so in respectful terms.

Yes it was, but I will do so in the future.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 18):
Yes, in other words ME and my countrymen. We did not elect that government so that they could lead us into wars willy-nilly and ignore the will of the people. The level of protest in the UK was unprecedented and I can honestly say that I know not one single person who was genuinely in favour of this nonsense.

Who said it wasn't the will of the people? As far as I remember, most of the West approved of the war at the time it was started. I know for a fact that in my country, most people was for the war, and for staying in the country for a very long time.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 18):
That is not true.

I believe it is true.

Based on a wikipedia article (even though they are not always reliable I think this is not far from the truth):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Popular..._in_the_US_on_the_invasion_of_Iraq

" A USA Today/Gallup Poll, taken prior to the invasion in March 2003, indicated that 75% of US citizens felt the invasion was not a mistake. However, according to the same poll retaken in April 2007, 58% of the participants stated that the initial attack was a mistake.[1"

Yes, people afterwards admitted the war was a mistake, I don't deny that, but not at the time the war began. I doubt the poll was much different in the UK.

And even before 9/11 people in the US believed it would be a good idea to invade Iraq:

"Seven months prior to the September 11 attacks a Gallup poll showed that 52% would favor an invasion of Iraq while 42% would oppose it.[3] Additionally, 64% said that the U.S. should have removed Saddam at the end of the Gulf War.[4]"

So at least G.W. Bush wasn't a dictator. I hope you agree, despite what else you might think of him.

[Edited 2009-12-12 14:15:53]

User currently offlineScorpio From Belgium, joined Oct 2001, 5052 posts, RR: 44
Reply 20, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1785 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 17):
I don't see how it is.

You said most people in the west were for the war. That is patently false.


User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7719 posts, RR: 21
Reply 21, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1782 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 19):
I know for a fact that in my country, most people was for the war, and for staying in the country for a very long time.

Surprising, but if you say so....

Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 19):
Who said it wasn't the will of the people? As far as I remember, most of the West approved of the war at the time it was started.

Here in the UK, as I already mentioned, we had unprecented levels of public opposition. Massive demonstrations, banners, posters, massive commentary in the various media against the war, and as I said - not a single person I came into contact with actually in favour to any serious extent. It was obvious. Everyone was talking about it. It was not wanted, was not what we elected them for, we told them that, and they did it anyway. They lied to us about the reasons, over and over again, in some thinly-veiled attempt to buy support, and now - the icing on the cake - they have effectively admitted that all the fuss about WMDs, the supposed vital pretext for invasion, was exactly what we always knew it to be - a lie and a pretext for regime change.



✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
User currently offlineAirPacific747 From Denmark, joined May 2008, 2475 posts, RR: 24
Reply 22, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1781 times:

Quoting Scorpio (Reply 20):
You said most people in the west were for the war. That is patently false.

No, I don't believe it is false.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 21):
Here in the UK, as I already mentioned, we had unprecented levels of public opposition. Massive demonstrations, banners, posters, massive commentary in the various media against the war

There will always be people against any decision made no matter what it is about. This still doesn't prove that the majority of the UK population didn't approve of the war at the time it was initiated.

[Edited 2009-12-12 14:20:06]

User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7719 posts, RR: 21
Reply 23, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1768 times:



Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 22):
There will always be people against any decision made no matter what it is about

I guess you didn't pay attention to the 'unprecedented' part of what I wrote. I cannot remember anything with such widespread and vocal disapproval as the Iraq invasion. I am not just talking about 'some people' disapproving a Government decision. Do I know every single citizen in the country? Obviously not, like you don't in yours, but for a well-informed, widely-read and intelligent person in the UK it was easy to guage the mood. It was everywhere. I'm not going to argue about it - it was obvious throughout.



✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
User currently offlineAirPacific747 From Denmark, joined May 2008, 2475 posts, RR: 24
Reply 24, posted (5 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1765 times:

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 23):

I guess you didn't pay attention to the 'unprecedented' part of what I wrote. I cannot remember anything with such widespread and vocal disapproval as the Iraq invasion. I am not just talking about 'some people' disapproving a Government decision. Do I know every single citizen in the country? Obviously not, like you don't in yours, but for a well-informed, widely-read and intelligent person in the UK it was easy to guage the mood. It was everywhere. I'm not going to argue about it - it was obvious throughout.

Perhaps it was, but at least 50% of the UK population approved at beginning of the war:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_..._Security_Council_and_the_Iraq_War

"United Kingdom - Within the Security Council, the UK was the primary supporter of the U.S. plan to invade Iraq. Prime Minister Tony Blair publicly and vigorously supported U.S. policy on Iraq, and portrayed himself as exerting a moderating influence on Bush. British public opinion polls in late January showed that the public support for the war was deteriorating. It had fallen from 50 percent to 30 percent by March. "

So now we can also conclude that Tony Blair was not a "dictator" either.

And it also leads me to think that people are just using Bush & Blair as scapegoats because they have bad conscience about the war in Iraq now, which seemed somewhat popular at the time it was initiated.

[Edited 2009-12-12 14:47:54]

25 Post contains links RussianJet : The following links help give a taste of how against the Iraq war the UK population was and is (and in the first link apparently Denmark's population
26 AirPacific747 : The bloomberg link is not based on opinions before the war. The bbc link doesnt show the actual approval rating of the war once it was initiated. The
27 RussianJet : .....which is why I said 'was and is'. Well try reading through it then (hint: there are several pages). It is a good overall indicator of the fact t
28 Kaitak : I think calling him a dictator is a bit strong, BUT it seems increasingly clear that he twisted the law to his own ends by supporting - and participa
29 Post contains links OA412 : It absolutely is false yet you continue to repeat it over and over again. I'm sorry but I'm supposed to provide a source but you continue to repeat y
30 GDB : The only reason Blair got re-elected in 2005, (with a much smaller majority and with about as low a share of the vote as you can get to win with, in a
31 AirPacific747 : But it is still not relevant. Yes, I never denied that the approval of the war in Iraq is gone today, yet you keep bringing it up. This, however, was
32 RussianJet : That is not true. The UK was no way 'definitively in favour of war' in terms of its public opinion.
33 AirPacific747 : Let's just skip this source all together.
34 RussianJet : Yeah, and let's skip the fact that I've lived in my country all my life, know it better than the ten fingers on my hands, read a huge range of media,
35 AirPacific747 : Where did that just come from?? I'm finding numbers and facts also concerning the UK, just like you're finding numbers and facts concerning Denmark.
36 OA412 : No you believe it's a bad source because it disproves your position and you therefore take issue with it. I'll ask again, since you are so convinced
37 AirPacific747 : No, I believe it is a bad source, because: a) I don't know the author of this source b) No numbers are included So now you discredit your own source
38 PlymSpotter : I can't help but think that Blair is trying to get this bad news out of the way now, so it's unveiling doesn't trip him up later in his career, if the
39 Rara : I would hope so. Baffles me that he's still bandied around as EU president and likewise. I was extremely disappointed with him; I had thought he was
40 Baroque : Well there is black (TB) and white Wilkie and a bit less so R Cook, and pale grey, Claire Short although there was such chaos it was difficult to fol
41 NoUFO : Nonsense. If it was just a mistake, it was a horrendous one. And it was at the very least stupid, as it nullified the only ehtically justifiable reas
42 Baroque : Oh Jesus, I had missed that. So Abu Ghraib was a mistake. One has to ask. A mistake to have set up a camp like that. Or was it a mistake to have the
43 Imiakhtar : Were the thousands of Iraqi lives lost in the ensuing chaos worth it? This headline along with countless other controversies, EU Lisbon Treaty and th
44 Baroque : Yes, the real cost for the UK could be the decimation of the alternate government in favour of a distinctly suspect lot of Tories. Can the third part
45 Imiakhtar : Probably as much chance as Aston Villa winning the premier league or Pakistan winning a test match . Nevertheless, one can hope. The Tories in my min
46 GDB : If you are going to embark on a very major military operation, you really should have rather more public support than what there was, in the UK, at th
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