Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Dog of War

Dogs of war and men of hate
With no cause, we don't discriminate
Discovery is to be disowned
Our currency is flesh and bone
Hell opened up and put on sale
Gather 'round and haggle
For hard cash, we will lie and deceive
Even our masters don't know the web we weave

One dog has stuck his nose out from behind the curtain…barely.

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair says he's sorry for "mistakes" made in the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, but he doesn't regret bringing down dictator Saddam Hussein.

What blabbering is this?  Without putting too fine a point on it, if you only wanted to take out Saddam, did you need to turn an entire region into hell?

"I can say that I apologize for the fact that the intelligence we received was wrong because, even though he had used chemical weapons extensively against his own people, against others, the program in the form that we thought it was did not exist in the way that we thought," Blair said…

How much more passive can he be?  I apologize for the intelligence I received?  “I apologize that Tommy had the wrong answer when I copied his test.”

Blair told Zakaria that besides the flawed Iraq intelligence, he also apologizes "for some of the mistakes in planning and, certainly, our mistake in our understanding of what would happen once you removed the regime."

Obviously no lessons were learned – as no one stopped removing (or trying to remove) regimes in Libya or Syria, for example.

But he stopped short of a full apology for the war.

"I find it hard to apologize for removing Saddam. I think, even from today in 2015, it is better that he's not there than that he is there," Blair said.

And with this statement, any possibility that Blair’s non-apologies were really meant to be apologies can be dismissed.  Regardless of the faulty intelligence, regardless of mistakes in planning or considering consequences, etc., he still would have supported invading Iraq and taking out Saddam.

Blair acknowledged to Zakaria that there are "elements of truth" in the view that the 2003 invasion of Iraq was the principle cause of the rise of ISIS.

He tries to get you to believe that he is taking some blame – yet his “element” is microscopic; it goes about as far as there is an element of truth that a butterfly flapping its wings in the Amazon results in higher gasoline prices in Cambodia.

"Of course, you can't say that those of us who removed Saddam in 2003 bear no responsibility for the situation in 2015," he said. "But it's important also to realize, one, that the Arab Spring which began in 2011 would also have had its impact on Iraq today, and two, ISIS actually came to prominence from a base in Syria and not in Iraq."

So why didn’t you go after ISIS instead of going after Assad?  In any case, don’t ask about the West’s involvement behind the so-called Arab Spring.

More broadly, Blair said, the policy debate on Western intervention remains inconclusive.

After more than one hundred years of Anglo failure in the Middle East, is he about to call into question the entire program of Western intervention?  Don’t hold your breath:

"We have tried intervention and putting down troops in Iraq; we've tried intervention without putting in troops in Libya; and we've tried no intervention at all but demanding regime change in Syria," he said. "It's not clear to me that, even if our policy did not work, subsequent policies have worked better."

“Demanding regime change in Syria” – like they sent a diplomatic cable?  No intervention in Syria?  Really?

Asked by Zakaria how he feels about being branded a "war criminal" for his decision to go into Iraq, Blair said he did what he thought was right at the time.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but Hitler did what he thought was right at the time; Stalin did what he thought was right at the time.  “Right” can be judged only via a specific value scale and ethical standard.

"Now, whether it's right or not, that's for -- everyone can have their judgment about that," he said.

Blair might consider standing trial in Fallujah to test this out.

Day of judgement, god is calling,
on their knees the war pigs crawling.
Begging mercy for their sins,
Satan, laughing, spreads his wings...Oh lord, yeah!

Day of judgement, oh Lord, yeah; from Ozzy’s lips to God’s ears (wow, think about that picture!).


  1. he cannot give an apology that rings true. narcissistic megalomaniacs are incapable of such.

  2. Pink Floyd & Black Sabbath in one write up...fantastic.

    The funny thing is, when I started to read this article I thought, "Hmmm, good start..but I think I would have used "War Pigs" instead of "The Dogs of War"...and then you went and did it at the end...LMAO!

    I bow to your literary mastery.

    1. Nick

      Pink Floyd won because I appreciate their music significantly more than the music of Black Sabbath.

      In hindsight, I could have titled the post "Dog of War Pig.". That would have tied it all together - descriptive of the character Blair, and also closing the loop in the post.

    2. Ha!

      I enjoy both Pink Floyd and Black Sabbath, but I've only seen Pink Floyd live. (The Division Bell tour, the old Cleveland stadium in 94')

      It really was an amazing concert. They are one of the few bands I've heard live that was as good/better live than their recordings.(showmanship aside)

  3. Funny how someone like Dr Christopher Manion bought the Daily Mail story that Blair had actually apologised, while Daniel McAdams thought not. He had seen and listened to the interview. I suspect the Dr had not
    And I did point out the qualifiers, the evasions of Blair, to the Dr, noting that this kind of rhetoric is as old as politicians
    I don't trust journalists judgement of the substance in a piece of political rhetoric, especially that of The Daily Mail.
    Blair didn't become Prime Minister by speaking I'm prudently or without some political sense. No matter how much we would want him to confess, we must recall that Hermann Gering twisted that tribunals tail while conceding nothing

  4. They sounded so cocksure in their day. But don't they always? Just like the perfect uniformed bodies and smiling faces that march into the fray, only to return bloodied and broken, the politicians make it all sound under control at the time. Spared no expense. Mission Accomplished.

    It's clear that putting the House under control of the people has fallen short as a brake against eternal war. I maintain that a constitutional change is in order. Whenever a military endeavor is underway, a third of Congress, a third of the Supreme Court, and a third of the President's cabinet must immediately report as privates first class to the battlefield on a 6-month rotational basis. It may not stop wars from happening, but it sure would throw a wrench in the works.

  5. Blair cannot hide behind faulty intelligence as an excuse for his war crimes. I recall that at the time, writers at Anti War.com were refuting, in almost real time, the War Party's scares of weapons of mass destruction in Saddam's hands. If bloggers with tiny resources were able to correctly conclude that the intelligence was faulty, then why couldn't the Bush and Blair regimes, with vastly more resources at their disposal, do so as well?

    But the real litmus test of what they really knew is this: If Bush and Blair knew for certain or even truly believed that Saddam possessed weapons of mass destruction, there is no way that they would have risked huge casualties to their militaries or to even their homelands by attacking Iraq. Saddam and his cronies knew that they would be fighting for their lives in the coming war and would have had nothing to lose by deploying such weapons. The fact that Bush and Blair did attack Iraq means that they knew beyond a doubt that Iraq did not possess weapons of mass destruction.

  6. Remember, it was a supposed leaked memo that was the catalyst for the apology B.S. in the first place.

    This is all for consumption anyway.He doesn't give a
    rats ass what they, or anybody else thinks.

    The real story to me is that English don't seem to care?
    Just like the great Americanness.

    I predict that the Powers That Be will hang GW out
    to dry for 9/11 too........ someday.

    Nice commentary,just the same though!!!

  7. People that it is in poor taste to compare Hitler to Tony Blair or George W. Bush. If you look at the historical record Bush and Blair compare unfavorably to Herr Hitler. Let's hang these war criminals.