John Chilcot, the man appointed to investigate the rush of war in Iraq by Prime Minister Gordon in 2009, has recently released a shocking report which claims that former Prime Minister Tony Blair dragged the country into the war without evidence. The official report was summarized by Chilcot in a 150-page brief that condemned Blair’s actions who was openly supporting American president George W. Bush at the time.
In the opening, Chilcot apologizes for taking so long for the findings and reiterates the reasons for the inquiry. He ends the introduction with harsh words on Tony Blair: “I wish you good luck in any prosecutions you may want to make, but feel I should remind you that Tony Blair has very deep pockets thanks to his humanitarian work with dictators in the Middle East.”
The report concludes that there was no justification for “judgements about the severity of the threat posed by Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction.” The report also says that “Despite explicit warnings, the consequences of the invasion were underestimated. The planning and preparations for Iraq after Saddam Hussein were wholly inadequate.” It further goes to claim that that the public has been lied to and that Blair was a co-conspirator in the War On Terror, while also holding him responsible for the rise of ISIS.
Recently, some declassified communications between Blair and Bush 8 months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003 revealed the depth of Blair’s loyalty to the Americans. “I will be with you, whatever.” one report read. This raises questions on Blair’s agenda and why he was so committed to help Bush.
Blair himself denied any implications in a 2011 interview and claimed that the removal of Sadam Hussein was solely USA’s goal. He claimed that his only concern was Sadam’s possession of WMDs. “All the way through — and I think this is what I said publicly at that time as well — if it [regime change]became the only way of dealing with this issue then we were going to be up for that…“, the former Prime Minister said. However, this contradicts with Chilcot’s report. The report has evidence on briefings between Bush and Blair in which Blair reviewed proposals written by the SIS. These proposals reveal that regime change was indeed their policy, independent from the White House. “At our meeting on 30 November, we discussed how we could combine an objective of regime change in Baghdad with the need to protect important regional interest which would be at grave risk, if a bombing campaign against Iraq were launched in the short term,” it was written in one of many declassified documents.
Unlike the whitewashed investigations in the USA, Chilcot’s report is a seriously critical self-examination which concludes that Blair’s reasoning for war was ill informed. However, even with evidence on the matter, prosecutions about the Iraq war will probably never happen.