Saturday, December 12, 2009

Tony Blair attacked over Iraq war 'justification'.

I spoke earlier today about Blair's astonishing candour regarding his reasoning for the Iraq war and how he would have had to "deploy different arguments" if the WMD excuse had not existed. As I said earlier, he could have come up with many "different arguments", but I am not sure he could have come up with a legal justification for what he did, deprived of the argument of WMD.

Now others are rounding on him:

Critics have said Mr Blair misled Parliament and "tailored his arguments to fit the circumstances".

Hans Blix, who was in charge of the UN team searching Iraq for WMD, said he thought Mr Blair used WMD as a "convenient justification" for war.

"Saddam's removal was a gain but it's the only gain that I can see from the war," said Mr Blix.

Blair's real crime was that he decided to go to war with Iraq and then set out to find a justification for that decision. He settled on WMD, but the decision to invade - and to remove Saddam - was made way before the justification was settled upon.

Blix sums it up perfectly:
"The war was sold on the weapons of mass destruction, and now you feel, or hear that it was only a question of deployment of arguments, as he said, it sounds a bit like a fig leaf that was held up, and if the fig leaf had not been there, then they would have tried to put another fig leaf there."
And that, indeed, is what is was; a deployment of arguments. Blair is a lawyer. That's why he never overtly made the case for regime change. As a lawyer, he knew that was illegal under international law.

What he revealed today is that he constructs his arguments, not according to any moral values, but rather to say what is needed to win the argument supporting whatever decision he has previously made.

That's what I always thought he did. The only startling thing is that he has said what he said so publicly.

But then, we must never forget that he is trailing this ahead of his appearance in front of Chilcot.

He's simply testing kites. He's seeing what will fly and what won't fly. Get ready for him to tell us how we have all misunderstood his latest comments.

Click here for full article.

No comments: