Sunday, January 31, 2010

Truest statement of the week II

The idea that vast numbers of Iraqis would hate to see foreign troops in their country is apparently too radical for this inquiry. So too is the fact that the Iraq war was the climax of a decade of liberal interventionism that blithely assumed outsiders know better what other nations want. The point was well illustrated during Alastair Campbell's testimony. Asked about the huge march through London in February 2003, a month before the invasion began, Blair's spin doctor said he recognised the pressure the protest's size was bound to put on the prime minister. To strengthen Blair's resolve, he arranged for three Iraqi exiles to meet him on the day of the march and urge him not to back away from invasion. The inquiry team listened meekly, apparently accepting Campbell's false premise that every Iraqi exile, and by extension every Iraqi in Iraq, supported the invasion. The idea that you could be against Saddam but also against a foreign invasion did not seem to occur to them. Neither Campbell nor the inquisitors showed any awareness that many Iraqi exiles took part in the London protest.

-- Jonathan Steele, "Iraq inquiry repeats Blair's mistake" (Guardian).
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
Poll1 { display:none; }