Britain glorifying Tony Blair: No apology for Iraq’s invasion
If there were real justice in this world, Tony Blair would have been taken to an international court for trial and accountability.
In a high-profile ceremony that took place on the 13th of this month at Windsor Castle, Tony Blair received the UK’s highest royal honor. Blair, the man who held the position of Britain’s Prime Minister for a whole decade (1997-2007), became a member of “Order of the Garter”. “Sir Tony” was appointed (by the Queen) to the oldest and most senior British Order of Chivalry as a “Knight Companion”. That was hardly a surprise to those who know how the royal establishment works in the retired empire.
In the name of the left and the working class - as head of the "Labour Party" - Tony Blair passionately served the deep state in the old empire in a way that not even the most devoted far-right politicians would do. As for the US, Britain’s American master since World War II, his “special” relationship with the Republican president George W. Bush was a reminder of the Thatcher – Reagan era! Blair managed to “unite” the British political rivals, Conservatives and Labour, right and left (if the “new” Labour Party could still be considered as left) behind the American project in Iraq. The UK parliament approved Blair’s decision to send 45,000 troops to the battlefield in Iraq.
Blair's political legacy has always been linked to the US war on Iraq in 2003, and the British role in it. He did not hesitate to vehemently join the Quartet (Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld & Powell) of American officials who were responsible for the illegal, unethical, and criminal invasion of Iraq. When Bush was preparing for his war in 2002, Blair offered his unconditional support. “I will be with you, whatever”, he told Bush. Blair ignored the widespread public opposition in Britain and the mass anti-war demonstrations and dealt with international law disdainfully. In Sept 2002, as part of its propaganda campaign, the Blair government published a 55-page “dossier” about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction. That dossier was full of blatant lies and fabrications. One of the most bizarre claims, though completely unfounded, from the dossier was that Iraq was capable of deplying chemical and biological warheads within 45 minutes! To add salt and pepper to the lie, Blair’s dossier went on to say that Iraq’s missiles were capable of reaching Europe (Cyprus) - an imminent threat!
All that was proven false. After the invasion, the Americans and the British failed to find any evidence to support those allegations even after years of extensive search operations all over Iraq. In 2016, Tony Blair publically acknowledged that fact, and said that the British intelligence reports “were wrong”, and went on to say that it was an “unintentional mistake”! Well, we don’t believe him. He was lying intentionally. He was not “mistaken” as he claims, he knew exactly what he was doing.
Britain played an important military role in the invasion. Its forces were given the assignment of occupying Basra and its vicinity in southern Iraq - and later administering those areas. The British played a significant role in mobilizing European, Arab and international support for the American aggression. Britain, under Blair’s leadership, participated in creating a fabricated negative image of the Iraqi regime as a threat to world peace and to the West in particular.
Millions of Iraqis died, were injured, imprisoned, displaced or exiled as a result of the aggression launched by the United States with British participation. The invasion led to the destruction of the entire social and economic structure of the country and the dissolution of the Iraqi army the state. The invasion triggered a civil war between Iraqis, on sectarian and ethnic grounds, under the supervision of Zalmay Khalilzad, the “High Commissioner” of the American empire in Baghdad, and also contributed to creating ISIS, the worst and bloodiest phenomenon in the region’s history since the Mughal’s invasions and Tatar’s rule!
In 2016, the conclusions of an extensive, years-long, investigative inquiry were published in the UK, known as the “Chilcot Report”. It confirmed what everybody already knows: that Blair had relied on flawed intelligence and that he over-hyped the “threat” of Saddam Husein. Under the pressure of the report, Blair was forced to publically express his “sorrow, regret and apology”. However, he remained defiant and insisted that “to remove Saddam and to be with America, I believe I made the right decision and the world is better and safer as a result of it”. Blair made it clear that he was apologizing to the families of the British soldiers who were killed in Iraq, not to the Iraqi people.
If there were real justice in this world, Tony Blair would have been taken to an international court for trial and accountability. Instead, we are witnessing a country glorifying a well-known war criminal. Britain is telling the world: look for bad guys elsewhere, Tony Blair is a nice guy who simply invaded Iraq “by mistake”, and that’s not a big deal!