Saturday, 30 January 2010
Tony Blair, the Iraq Inquiry, and 'People forget'
This is a note that I wrote to an American contact on the 18th of March, 2003:
"Here are my own views, for what they are worth:
I think that it is right to get rid of Saddam Hussein and that the task should have been finished in the former fracas. John Major, our then Prime Minister, and George Bush, senior, your then President, are to blame for that job not being done properly and I understand from a friend of mine who is a close friend of Mr Major that 'it was the Americans (who stopped us)'. Be that the truth or not, it was a major (oh dear!) error of judgement, for which we have all paid dearly ever since.
I know that the consequences of the coming conflict could be awful, but what is the realistic alternative? Saddam Hussein has been portrayed as a modern-day Hitler, and that is clearly ridiculous, for the latter was the elected leader of a modern industrial state of enormous strength and was actively threatening his neighbours and others, whereas the former is dictator of a tin-pot 'invented' country with a crashed-out economy who claims not to be threatening others nowadays. But the fact remains that S.H. did attack Kuwait, did murder other Iraqis, and did attack Israel with his missiles. If he is let off the hook now there will be no holding him and, with renewed confidence and re-arming, he will have another 'go' at his people and his neighbours in due time, just as he did before.
The people that I feel most sorry for are the Iraqis and our friends in Israel. I took our Dalmatian doggies to their vet. on Thursday last for their regular 'shots'. Their vet. is Jewish; his folks live in Israel; that place is a democracy; but they are under constant threat from socialist Arabs like Saddam Hussein and religious fanatics like Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Despite any doubts about Bush and some of his 'fundamentalist' friends who scare the living daylights out of me, 'our' side is right, in your humble servant's opinion, and just has to prevail."