It's no longer possible to rely 100% on ads to keep our organization going. If you believe in why Films For Action exists, we hope you'll become a supporter on Patreon. A monthly donation of $1, $3, $5 or more per month will really help!
With the Release of Chilcot Report, Critics Intensify Calls for Tony Blair to Face 'Reckoning'
There 'has to be a judicial or political reckoning' for Blair's role in Iraq War, one critic charges
With the Release of  Chilcot Report, Critics Intensify Calls for Tony Blair to Face 'Reckoning'
Protesters outside London home of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair on the morning of the release of the Chilcot report
By Nika Knight / commondreams.org
Jul 6, 2016

Ahead of Wednesday's release of the long-awaited UK government inquiry into the Iraq War—which took a full seven years to complete—many anti-war critics are demanding that Tony Blair and other prominent officials finally face justice for the disastrous decision to invade Iraq in 2003.

Those critics include the wife of a Royal Marine, Norwegian nurse May-Helen Forsberg, who was five months pregnant when her husband was killed on the first day of the conflict.

Forsberg's son, now 12, was named after his father, Major Jason Ward. The younger Jason never met his father, and Forsberg told Sky News that he used to ask for a ladder to climb up to heaven to finally meet him.

"I think Tony Blair and George Bush are to blame and I've always thought that," Forsberg told Sky News.

"I would ask them to apologize to all those who are left behind," Forsberg said. "What is it Jason says? They should go to jail forever."

If he were ever to meet Blair in person, Jason said, "I wouldn't want to talk to him, I would just stare at him right in his eyes, for all the people that died in that war."

While many have expressed fear that the 2.6-million-word Chilcot report will end up awhitewashing of recent history, others see a long overdue chance to pursue Blair and other pro-war politicians for their actions in 2003.

Admiral Lord West, who headed the Royal Navy when the invasion took place in March 2003, added fuel to the fire on Monday when he remarked that Blair had been looking for an excuse to wage war on Iraq as early as 2002.

That claim contradicts Blair's defense that he had "exhausted all diplomatic routes" before joining forces with Bush in 2003, as the Mirror notes.

According to The Independent, Lord West said that Blair's administration was just "looking for a reason to actually do it":

"I think there had been a decision that we were going to invade Iraq, that that was going to happen, but they were looking for a reason to actually do it.

"Of course Blair and everyone else will say, 'No, we didn't make the decision until right up to it'. You can always say that, can't you?

"But I would not have told the fleets, the Royal Navy and the Marines, to be ready for war in the northern Gulf by the end of the year. I would not have sailed the Mine Counter-measures Force for the Middle East so they were in place for operations.

"You don't wake up in the morning and think that. Some bastard told me to do it. That's why I did it."

Former Scotland First Minister Alex Salmond is among those who are predicting that the Chilcot inquiry's results will spell bad news for Blair.

Indeed, according to TIME, Salmond "thinks the report must be bad for Blair because he has been vigorously defending his actions in the run-up to publication, which is significant given he will know how the report criticizes him because of the Maxwellisation process," referring the procedure by which those criticized in the report were given advance copies to read and opportunity to respond.

In response to Blair's recent spate of public appearances, Salmond says: "Blair has re-emerged like some vampire being reconstituted at the end of a Hammer horror film."

Salmond told Sky News that there "has to be a judicial or political reckoning" for Blair's role in the Iraq War.

"He seemed puzzled as to why Jeremy Corbyn thinks he is a war criminal, why people don't like him," he added. "The reason is 179 British war dead, 150,000 immediate dead from the Iraq conflict, the Middle East in flames, the world faced with an existential crisis on terrorism—these are just some of the reasons perhaps he should understand why people don't hold him in the highest regard."


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License

0.0 ·
0
Featured Films
The Staging Post: Courageous People Never Give Up! (2017)
61 min The Staging Post follows two Afghan Hazara refugees, Muzafar and Khadim. Stuck in Indonesia after Australia 'stopped the boats' and facing many years in limbo, they built a community and started the school which inspired a refugee education revolution. A real-life...
Inhabit: A Permaculture Perspective (2015)
92 min Humanity is more than ever threatened by its own actions; we hear a lot about the need to minimize footprints and to reduce our impact. But what if our footprints were beneficial? What if we could meet human needs while increasing the health and well-being of our...
Within Reach (2013)
87 min Within Reach explores one couple's pedal-powered search for a place to call home. Mandy and Ryan gave up their jobs, cars, and traditional houses to 'bike-pack' 6500 miles around the USA seeking sustainable community. Rather than looking in a traditional neighborhood, they...
Schooling the World (2010)
66 min If you wanted to change an ancient culture in a generation, how would you do it? You would change the way it educates its children. The U.S. Government knew this in the 19th century when it forced Native American children into government boarding schools. Today, volunteers...
Fall and Winter (2013)
102 min This stunning film takes you on a hypnotic journey, reaching to the past to understand the origins of the catastrophic environmental transitions we now face. Over two years, director Matt Anderson traveled 16,000 miles to document firsthand our modern industrial world and the...
The Economics of Happiness (2011)
65 min Economic globalization has led to a massive expansion in the scale and power of big business and banking. It has also worsened nearly every problem we face: fundamentalism and ethnic conflict; climate chaos and species extinction; financial instability and unemployment. There...
Trending Today


Love Films For Action? Become a Patron!

Our Patreon campaign is now live! We hope you'll be among the first to support this new direction for Films For Action. The goal is to go 100% ad-free by next year, and become 100% member supported. A monthly pledge of just $1 -5 dollars per month x a few thousand awesome people will ensure we can continue our work and grow our impact across the world. Click here to join.

Join us on Facebook
With the Release of Chilcot Report, Critics Intensify Calls for Tony Blair to Face 'Reckoning'