Iraq Inquiry – Truth must be heard
Last night’s vote allowing the government to proceed with the into the inquiry the Iraq in it’s own-branded half-hearted way was disappointing but sadly not unexpected. Labour MP’s, cowed by the rebellion that never was, have reverted to type and their overriding modus oprendi has reverted to seeing this government as their only hope against joining the rapidly swelling ranks of the unemployed.
From start to finish; the tale of the Iraq war is a tale of the human cost of what happens when government goes wrong, when the executive is unaccountable to anybody or anything but itself and it’s own iron-clad conviction. However, the Conservative opposition is little better in this regard since they are adopting their position purely as they sense another opportunity to further embarrass the government and you can’t escape the feeling they would more than a little like to personally contaminate the reputation of Tony Blair as punishment for him exiling them for government for so long. The same voices that call for a public inquiry now offered their whole-hearted support in the march to war.
It’s not something I expect them to pursue if they do win power at the next election. However, it really should be and not just for all the other arguments about how bad the Iraq war was but also for Dr David Kelly who was one of the many victims of the conflict and the governments actions. Writing in The Spectator; John Kampfner rightly is sceptical of the whole process;
“Chilcot has now made clear that as much as possible will be held in the open. However, watch carefully for the machinations, for the attempts made to exclude various witnesses and statements from public hearings. Watch for the attempts by Blair and those close to him to set the terms for their involvement. And watch for the role of Downing Street, as the general election becomes closer, to delay sensitive testimony until long after the players have disappeared from the scene.”
Standing in it’s own right this government has already had it’s credibility totally ruined and the last thing it now needs is the contamination of it’s own record. The truth should be heard on Iraq but you get the feeling it is something that, sadly, it won’t be for many years to come.