March 2, 2010

Noose Tightening for Tony Blair

It might be true that Britain's Chilcot investigation is toothless, but such inquiries can take on a life of their own. On March 2, The Independent of the UK ran the headline:

An invasion of Iraq was discussed within the Government more than two years before military action was taken – with the Foreign Office warning that an invasion would be illegal...

Secret Foreign Office strategy papers drawn up by senior civil servants at the end of 2000 have been obtained by this newspaper and are published for the first time today. The Iraq: future strategy document considers options for dealing with the Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.

The document also calls into question Mr Blair's claim that using troops to bring down Saddam Hussein was only discussed after the 9/11 terror attacks on New York – and will increase pressure on the inquiry to call Mr Blair back to give further public evidence this summer.

At some point facts emerge that are an existential threat to a government's legitimacy. The potential loss of legitimacy forces the government into an inescapable calculus: Is it worse for the entire government to loose its legitimacy or is it worse to throw a former Prime minister under the bus? The calculus is easy, Tony Blair must be sacrificed for the greater good, for the stability of society that depends on preserving the legitimacy of the government.


Credit to Ten Percent for drawing this to my attention.

The Independent UK, "Blair warned in 2000 Iraq war was illegal: Secret papers withheld by Chilcot inquiry reveal Foreign Office fears over invasion," March 2, 2010.

By Michael Savage, Political Correspondent



libhom said...

The British, at least, were smart enough to get out.

GDAEman said...

The British people were smart enough to create the pressure.