The humble memory stick lured Blair out into the open yesterday, or rather, 160 of them.
As news of their contents spread through the western intelligence world – the names of all the foreign fighters enrolled in the psychopathically murderous ISIS jihadists currently strolling at will through his ‘democratically restructured’ Iraq, to say nothing of the billion dollar oil deals, and bank raids that have left ISIS probably the best financed mercenary force in existence – he emerged to line up his excuses before the firing line of public opinion.
With the benefit of hindsight, he says the ‘Arab spring’ uprisings ‘would have swept across Iraq anyway’ and therefore whether he had decided to go to war in 2003 or not was ‘irrelevant’.
So it is a bizarre reading of the cauldron that is the Middle East today, to claim that but for the removal of Saddam, we would not have a crisis.
Or to put it another way – had he decided not to go to war, the situation would be exactly the same as it is today. So that makes it irrelevant?
Except it doesn’t, does it? 179 fine young British lads would still have been celebrating Father’s Day yesterday, sinking a pint in the Dog and Firkin; another 5,970 of them wouldn’t have been swallowing the pain killers or painfully learning to walk again/live without their eyesight/one or both of their legs. It must be a great comfort to their family and friends to know that their sacrifice was for ‘irrelevant’ reasons.
I imagine the 4,486 american families who only received a plastic bag full of their father’s and brother’s and husband’s remains might be a tad angry to learn that their loss was ‘irrelevant’ too; the 500 amputees presumably ‘hopping’ mad – we can make that 1500 if we include those who lost an arm rather than a leg; and another 32,000 for whom life will never been the same again. ‘Irrelevant’?
Now he thinks that it is imperative that we deal with this new threat. The threat that was starkly revealed in those 160 USB sticks.
“Already the security agencies of Europe believe our biggest future threat will come from returning fighters from Syria. “
‘Returning fighters’. Ah, you mean they have British passports? They are British citizens? Surely that is the only reason they will be ‘returning to us’? Why not say so? Was that another of your ‘irrelevant’ decisions?
“People shy away from the starkness of that statement.”
He seems to do a pretty good job of shying away from the starkness of his own statements. As far as I am aware, the only way to ensure that a British citizen or passport holder doesn’t return to these shores is to either lock him up securely for life in foreign climes, or blast him to smithereens in the desert…you could, of course, since you do now know who they are, revoke his passport and citizenship. Which option does Blair prefer?
“Where the extremists are fighting, they have to be countered hard, with force. This does not mean Western troops as in Iraq. There are masses of responses we can make short of that. But they need to know that wherever they’re engaged in terror, we will be hitting them.”
So, hidden in the rhetoric, he is recommending the ‘blasting them to smithereens’ in the desert option. Bombing ‘peace loving’ British Muslims – that’s sure to help the situation we now find ourselves in.
At the heart of the Middle East situation is an inheritance row that makes Jarndyce v. Jarndyce look like a two minute wonder. Since the Prophet Muhammad died 1,400 years ago, his followers have been divided over who should carry the torch forward – and who gets receipt of the Zakāt. Some favoured Abu Bakr, a close friend of the Prophet – they became known as the Sunnis. Another group firmly believed that Muhammad had already indicated that he wanted his cousin and son-in-law Ali to take over from him. Ali’s cheer leaders came to be known as ‘Shiites’.
Since the Zakāt amounts to a minimum of 2.5% of the earnings of all Muslims worldwide, it is no surprise that they have been fighting cat and dog over Muhammad’s inheritance for 1,400 years and will continue to do so. Jarndyce v. Jarndyce restricted itself to ‘heads of claims’ – Sunnis v. Shiites prefer to use real heads. Including those of infidels, if they are unwise enough to step into this Tort-uous fray.
The British did step into this fray, with rulers, compasses and protractors, many years ago. They decided to divide up the desert court room into neat little nations, so that they could have a compliant ‘Ruler’ in each, one that would accept their chosen price for the riches hidden in the sand. Either side of their neatly drawn lines were left varying numbers of supporters of the two camps.
Periodically, we’ve issued the most up to date pitchforks to one side or the other. Sometimes we have a fit of morality, and give them pots of gold instead and then turn a blind eye when they buy pitchforks from another tribe with the money.
Tony Blair had the bright idea of importing some of the combatants to Britain, working on some half baked theory that they would knuckle down and work hard to support the pensioners his mate Gordon had just denuded of their self provided support system. Then he had the bright idea of sending some fine young British lads out to blast their cousins to smithereens. Brilliant thinking!
He’s quite right, they would still be fighting cat and dog whatever he’d decided back in 2003, but that doesn’t mean he’s not to blame. He made the decision to get involved. Yet again.
Now he wants to bomb ‘British Muslims’ in the desert, to stop them returning here as a ‘threat’. Does anybody think that will help?