Monday, 18 January 2010

sentence the war criminal!

to death! which is even further than (most of) the Guardian readers calling for Tony Blair's head on a charger want to go! but it has been done! yes, the arch-criminal responsible for genocide in Iraq has been sentenced to death. Chemical Ali of course, who did you think I meant? On the subject of the fans of Saddam Hussein and his business partners who actually do want the official version of history to be "Tony Blair is a war criminal", I could do no better than Nick Cohen:

“mainstream public opinion has never been interested in offering solidarity to the victims of Ba’athism and Islamism. Instead of talking about what happened to Iraq either before or after the invasion, it has remained stuck in the groove of spring 2003, endlessly scratching the record for a conspiratorial explanation for Britain’s decision to invade.
We are now enduring our fifth Iraq inquiry. Tribunals have called Alastair Campbell so many times he could imitate Sherman McCoy in The Bonfire of the Vanities and declare: “I am a career defendant. I now dress for jail, even though I haven’t been convicted of any crime.” They do not seem to know it but if they hold inquiries until the crack of doom, the war’s opponents will never convict him or the Labour leadership. Their central allegation that the second Iraq war was “illegal” is unsustainable and not only because no competent court has validated it.
I am growing old and grey waiting for John Humphrys or Jon Snow to show a spark of journalistic life and ask Nick Clegg, Philippe Sands and all the rest of them the simple question: “What do you mean by an ‘illegal war’?”
However vigorously they seek to parse UN resolution 1,441, the use of “illegal” demonstrates that Tony Blair’s lawyerly critics believe that the Ba’athist regime, which was guilty of genocide and under UN sanctions, remained Iraq’s legitimate government, entitled by law to treat the country as its private prison.
After the war, not even Saddam’s business partner Jacques Chirac
and former Cllr Sutton's best friend, Ed. went so far as to say that the Ba’athists should have their “illegally” stolen country restored to them. The UN, instead, recognised the occupation and the democratic government that followed and lost some of its bravest workers in the struggle for a freer country.
The inability to accept that a policy they honestly opposed still had moral virtues is producing levels of dementia unusually high even by the standards of British public life.”

or Norman Geras commenting on the above:

The inability to accept that a policy they honestly opposed still had moral virtues is producing levels of dementia unusually high even by the standards of British public life.
Nick Cohen in today's Observer. The dementia is a product precisely of the policy's virtues: too many who opposed it just cannot face the fact that it was the war's supporters who wanted Saddam overthrown whereas they themselves... didn't. Though some of them had reasonable reasons for not wanting it, it torments a proportion of them nonetheless, and so they have to find something worse than bad judgement on the other side - deceit, illegality, apostasy and what have you.


Jonny said...

I have never been a pacifist, I admit. I'm with Mao on that one. And I'm not a Blairite at all, as if you knew me you'd know. I really don't give a toss about the minutiae of whether a UN resolution counts as a justification under international law or whether not being seen to obey the letter of it is a crime, mainly because I don't trust lawyers to be moral. Saddam and the Ba'athist regime were toppled. Genocide was halted against the Kurds and others. We did the right thing.

Anonymous said...

I think the allegation against Tony Blair is that he misled the House of Commons. Mind you, they were easily misled. It was obvious to me that the "evidence" of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) was a pile of junk long before the war. I particularly liked the satellite photo of a building with a lorry outside it which was claimed to be evidence that WMD had been removed from the building. The lorry was probably just a dustcart come to collect the rubbish. I could give other examples but I'll save them till later.