Former Lord Chancellor Lord Falconer, mate of Tony Blair, is quoted in today’s edition of The Herald as ‘admitting’ that ‘Britain’ was wrong to ‘go in to’ Iraq.
There’s a lot more to what Lord Falconer said than that – but let’s start there.
This was no admission. ‘I think that the Iraq war is perceived to be a mistake.’
It was not ‘Britain’ that ‘went in to’ Iraq. It was Charlie’s mate Tony who took Britons there on a knowingly false prospectus.
And Blair did not lead us to ‘go in to’ Iraq. He took us to war with it – into initiating that war.
The former Chancellor went on to explain that: ‘We didn’t find weapons of mass destruction there and that was the basis by which we went in. So on that basis, we weren’t right to go in.’
This slickly elides the fact that we had every reason to know, before we ‘went in’ that there were no weapons of mass destruction there to be found. What was the work – and the life – of Dr David Kelly all about?
It was not in fact the potential presence of weapons of mass destruction that ‘took us’ into Iraq. This is no more than what we were told was the reason for going to war.
The core disease of the parti pris party politician was laid bare in Falconer’s primary retrospective concern for what was ‘perceived to be a mistake’ in initiating that war.
Of course it will have been a horrified compassion for the deliberately uncounted thousands of innocent civilians who died there? Not.
Then it must have been a weighty sense of responsibility for the consequences of the fastbreeder of international terrorism that excursion proved to be? Not.
Was it for the plight of contemporary Iraq, still with much of its infrastructure not restored to what it had been? Not.
Was it for the destabilisation into religious war of a country whose alien regime [to us] nevertheless held that state together? Not.
The real tragedy of this ‘perceived mistake’ was its impact on the British Labour Party.
Falconer says: ‘I think the Iraq war damaged Labour everywhere. and I thin k that the Iraq war is peceived to be a mistake. By Labour. By Tony Blair.
‘That damaged Labour right throughout Scotland and England but I;m not sure it necessarily damaged Labour more in Scotland than it did in England.’
At the end of the day this is what really matters?