Life at № 42
As always in matters of military aggression, the humane perspective has to start with the victims. Since the US-led, UK-backed invasion of Iraq in 2003, estimates of the lives lost to violence vary from a quarter of a million to 600,000. The number of injured will surely be several times that, and the number of men, women and children displaced from their homes is put at between 3.5 and 5 million, somewhere between one in 10 and one in six of the population.
And Blair’s response, spinny as ever, begins with this: “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.”
Actually, the report lays none of that to rest. In fact it does quite the opposite. Blair’s defence seems to be that “no one knew the dangers”. No one knew the intelligence might be faulty. Excuse me, but I seem to remember quite an outcry at the time. Remember Robin Cook’s resignation speech from the Blair government?
Or Chirac being interviewed by Amanpour: