[UPDATE-1] The careful reader is aware I wrote the previous diary on Saturday, ahead of the televised interview on CNN GPS with Fareed Zakaria. The Guardian apparently deleted the Original article and wrote a revised version dated on Sunday. That is the reason the contents I quoted differs from the linked article. The Guardian does not mention this but the article has been updated.

My new diary was written after I saw the interview on CNN and was able to criticize the squirming and pathetic arguments used by Tony Blair to compare his handling of the Iraq invasion and removal of Saddam Hussein with today’s quagmire in Libya and Syria. Easily trying to escape judgement for the Middle-East upheaval caused by him and the US military under the George Bush administration.

Chilcot Iraq War Inquiry and the War On Terror by Oui on Sat Oct 24th, 2015 at 10:43 PM PDT [end of update]

Painful to watch and listen to … worst interviewer thinkable: CNN’s Fareed Zakaria on GPS.

On Bush and 9/11 Paul Wolfowitz and Philip Zelikow of the 9/11 Commission

Blaming Bush: Discussing Donald Trump’s remarks on 9/11

Fareed Zakaria 1 on 1 with Tony Blair who is sorry for faulty intelligence… concludes Bush and I did OK in Iraq … look what’s happening in Libya and Syria. Contrary to historic facts says ISIS was caused by Assad in Syria. Damn lying bastard and war criminal!

No video or transcript yet … here is Britain’s Daily Mail with the headlines:

‘I’m sorry’: Historic moment Tony Blair finally APOLOGISES for Iraq War and admits in TV interview the conflict caused the rise of ISIS

Tony Blair has finally said sorry for the Iraq War – and admitted he could be partly to blame for the rise of Islamic State. The extraordinary confession by the former Prime Minister comes after 12 years in which he refused to apologise for the conflict.

Blair makes his dramatic ‘mea culpa’ during a TV interview about the ‘hell’ caused by his and George Bush’s decision to oust Saddam Hussein.

In the exchange, Blair repeatedly says sorry for his conduct and even refers to claims that the invasion was a war ‘crime’ – while denying he committed one. Blair is asked bluntly in the CNN interview, to be broadcast today: ‘Was the Iraq War a mistake?’ He replies:

    “I apologise for the fact that the intelligence we received was wrong.
    I also apologise for some of the mistakes in planning and, certainly, our mistake
    in our understanding of what would happen once you removed the regime.”

Challenged that the Iraq War was ‘the principal cause’ of the rise of Islamic State, he said: ‘I think there are elements of truth in that.’

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An edited extract of Tony Blair's interview with Fareed Zakaria of the Americn CNN TV news network (Credit: Daily Mail)

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A War to Be Proud Of by Chris Hitchens | Weekly Standard - Sept. 2005 | [cached]

The only speech by any statesman that can bear reprinting from that low, dishonest decade came from Tony Blair when he spoke in Chicago in 1999. Welcoming the defeat and overthrow of Milosevic after the Kosovo intervention, he warned against any self-satisfaction and drew attention to an inescapable confrontation that was coming with Saddam Hussein. So far from being an American “poodle,” as his taunting and ignorant foes like to sneer, Blair had in fact leaned on Clinton over Kosovo and was insisting on the importance of Iraq while George Bush was still an isolationist governor of Texas.

Address PM Tony Blair to Economic Club in Chicago: Doctrine of the International Community | Sept. 24, 1999 | [cached]


I very much hope that Russia and the IMF can reach an early agreement on a new programme to provide macro-economic stability, avoid hyper-inflation and encourage Russian companies and savers to keep their own money in the country. This however will only be a first step. I want to see a wider dialogue between Russia and the G7 focussing on all of the structural and legal reforms that are needed to improve the economic prospects for ordinary Russians. Russia is a unique economy with its own special problems and its own unique potential. We all need to build on the lessons of the last few years and develop a long term strategy for reform that respects Russia’s history, her culture and her aspirations. If Russia is prepared, with our understanding and co-operation, to take the difficult economic action it needs to reform its economy – to build a sound and well-regulated financial system, to restructure and close down bankrupt enterprises to develop and enforce a clear and fair legal system and to reduce the damage caused by nuclear waste – the G7 must be prepared to think imaginatively about how it can best support these efforts.

We will be putting forward concrete ideas on how to do this at the Cologne Summit – by opening up our markets to Russian products. by providing technical advice and sharing our expertise with the Russians, by providing support both bilaterally and through the IMF. the World Bank and the other lEls and the Paris Club for the Russian reform efforts.

I believe passionately that we will all benefit hugely from a thriving Russia making use of its immense natural resources, its huge internal market and its talented and weIl-educated people. Russia’s past has been as a world power that we felt confronted by We must work with her to make her future as a world power with whom we co-operate in trust and to mutual benefit.

International Security

The principles of international community apply also to international security.

We now have a decade of experience since the end of the Cold War. It has certainly been a less easy time than many hoped in the euphoria that followed the collapse of the Berlin Wall. Our armed forces have been busier than ever – delivering humanitarian aid, deterring attacks on defenceless people, backing up UN resolutions and occasionally engaging in major wars as we did in the Gulf in 1991 and are currently doing in the Balkans.

Have the difficulties of the past decade simply been the aftershocks of the end of the Cold War? Will things soon settle down, or does it represent a pattern that will extend into the future?

Many of our problems have been caused by two dangerous and ruthless men – Saddam Hussein and Slobodan Milosevic. Both have been prepared to wage vicious campaigns against sections of their own community. As a result of these destructive policies both have brought calamity on their own peoples. Instead of enjoying its oil wealth Iraq has been reduced to poverty, with political life stultified through fear.

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