Nearly seven years have passed since American and British forces invaded Iraq in order to seize the alleged WMD and to bring the benefits of democracy to the people of that nation. Former Prime Minister Tony Blair appeared before the Chilcot inquiry which is attempting to unravel how the decision to invade was made and what were original goals of that decision. Blair told the inquiry he had “no regrets” and blamed any subsequent problems on Iranian interference, misplaced assumptions and not enough American troops on the scene. He did not offer any explanation as to why 40,000 British troops were sent into a country in search of non-existent weapons.
When questioned if the invasion was worth over 100,000 dead Iraqi civilians, Blair responded: “I genuinely believe that if we had left Saddam in power, even with what we know now, we would still have had to deal with him in circumstances when the threat was worse..” It is unclear which “threat” was ever posed by Saddam Hussein, given that he lacked any WMD. All Blair could utter was, “I think he was a monster.” Blair repeatedly defended his decision by claiming Saddam Hussein had the power to become a threat.
The former prime minister denied he had conspired with George Bush to create a war, he expressed shock at American torture of prisoners, and would only admit to “errors” in not being prepared for the aftermath of the invasion.
Where does one begin to respond to this cloud of words. First, Saddam Hussein was noteven capable of defeating Iran during the 1980s despite years of war. Second, the UN asked for a few more weeks to continue their investigation about the alleged WMD. Third, General Shinseki, Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff asked for 400,000 troops and was not only told he was wrong by Secretary of Defense Don Rumsfeld, but was forced to resign. As Tony Blair left the room, there were shouts from the audience, “you are a liar and a murderer.”