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Old 24th Nov 2016, 19:11
  #7558 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: West Wiltshire, UK
Age: 67
Posts: 369
Originally Posted by PDR1 View Post

So my bottom like is that most of Chillcot's conclusions were just 20-20 hindsight - pointless heckling. And pretty well every criticism of Blair could just as easily be applied to Winston. But armchair hecklers don't have the courage to walk into trafagar square and spout about winston-the-liar or winston-the-war-criminal.

Saddam wanted us to believe that he had WMDs - he paid the price. We didn't find any WMDs - but we also haven't found any Dark Matter either.

You missed out the fact that the "dodgy dossier", that was used to convince parliament that there was a real and credible threat of WMD being deployed within 45 minutes was, in fact, plagiarised in large part from a student thesis, not credible intelligence reports, presumably because they (meaning Tony Blair and his cronies, who were bending over backwards to keep Bush Junior happy) didn't have time to create something original.

I have direct knowledge from one of the weapons inspectors, who repeatedly said there was no credible WMD capability in Iraq at that time, and what's more it would take, in his opinion (as a well-respected scientist) many months, perhaps years, for Iraq to gain a WMD capability. Off the record, this same inspector said that, in his view, it would probably take a decade before Iraq obtained a rapidly deployable WMD capability, perhaps longer.

All this was fed directly to Tony Blair at the time, via the intelligence agencies (who almost certainly watered it down - no one was prepared to go against what Blair was set on doing). He created an atmosphere where it was practically career suicide for anyone to gainsay him over Iraq, which is not a healthy way to run any government.

There was a tremendous amount of scientific effort put into trying to find WMD capability in Iraq, driven, in part, by the limited chemical weapons attacks against the Kurds and by Israeli concerns over the capability of the converted SCUD missiles. Despite all this effort, nothing could be found that supported the case that there was any "ready for use" WMD capability, let alone one that could be deployed in 45 minutes, as Blair claimed.

Hindsight has, indeed, confirmed what was already very clear before we went to war. Of course Hussein wanted the world to believe he had greater capabilities than he had; that had been behind his means of retaining power for years, and was what had instigated the in-depth international investigations into what those capabilities might be. And, for what it's worth, I didn't get my information from the media or

The comparison with Churchill is crass. Throughout the 1930's there was a growing mountain of evidence that Germany was re-arming, and that it had adopted a policy of anti-Semitism. We had agreements with other states to provide them with military support in the event of Nazi aggression, and we honoured those agreements.

Certainly Churchill's government used propaganda, AFTER the outbreak of war, but there was no propaganda from him before then, Remember, he did not become Prime Minister until well after the outbreak of war. All he did prior to this was repeatedly warn that Germany was re-arming and set on a path that would lead to war - and he was absolutely right. There was nothing equivalent to the "dodgy dossier", in fact, if anything, the military capability of Nazi Germany was under-estimated in the 1930's, not massively over-estimated (with made-up intelligence) as Blair and his cronies did.
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