DaveP

War Criminal?
« on: July 07, 2016, 06:02:28 PM »
As a student of history, I find the current hysteria about Tony Blair and the Iraq war disproportionate.

I decided to do a little research to find out why he would have put his neck on the line for Bush.

The Americans lost  116,516 dead and 204,002 wounded in World War One, defending Britain and France.

The Americans lost  405,399 dead and 1,076,245 wounded in World War Two fighting for Europe and the Far East.

I guess that after 9/11 where another 2,977 lost their lives he wanted to support America in their fight?

I do remember the UN being given the run-around by Saddam before the war in the hope of dividing the security council.

The death toll of British servicemen and women in Iraq was 179 in total.

During the days after D Day, the British lost 2000 men per day absorbing the counter attacks on the perimeter.  On the first day of the Somme they lost 19,240 dead, I would have expected 179 to have been a very quiet day back then.

While the 179 lost in Iraq was an appalling loss for the families concerned,  it is not unheard of to die if you join the army.

I do understand that the loss of those men is made worse by the thought "that they died for nothing".  Blair made a judgement call based on faulty intel and, some might argue, mis-placed loyalty to the US.  Very few people thought that the Iraqis would turn on each other after being liberated, that has not normally been the pattern in other conflicts.

History also shows that the people of the UK were so appalled by Tony Blair that they elected him 3 times.

I have added this link to try to provide a much needed sense of proportion to the subject:-
https://mic.com/articles/120271/this-incredible-visualization-shows-just-how-many-people-died-in-wwii#.wltfdvftd

Source:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_military_casualties_of_war

This is not my attempt to absolve him of blame, but not many of us have been Prime Ministers, or Presidents come to that, and I can't help thinking that there for the grace of God go I.

DaveP

Soundcloud: Delayed Action.


Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2016, 07:35:21 PM »
Hi Dave

You miss the most important...
Depending of source, second war in Iraq kill between 200 000 and 1.4 million Iraqi... mostly civil.
Of course not all of them under US/UK bomb, but still the war situation. Blair is not a stranger about this.

I will never forget the 2003 speech of De Villepin at UN security council...

Best
Zam

JohnRoberts

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2016, 10:14:41 PM »
Ignore the man behind the curtain... we can't change the past, focus on now and the future, that we can change .

JR
Visit https://circularscience.com to hear what properly "cleared" drums sound like.

ln76d

« Last Edit: July 08, 2016, 03:21:58 PM by ln76d »

mattiasNYC

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2016, 11:36:51 PM »
Ignore the man behind the curtain... we can't change the past, focus on now and the future, that we can change .

JR

Ignoring the past is the best way to repeat mistakes. The US seems to have learned absolutely nothing from history. Unless we make a less favorable guesstimation of the capacity of its people and politicians.

mattiasNYC

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2016, 11:43:55 PM »
On-topic;

Apart from missing all the dead Iraqi people that didn't ask to be liberated of life, there seems to be absolutely zero distinction between fighting a Germany that started a war, and actually starting a war oneself. How is that impossible to ignore?

And as for "faulty intelligence" - this is just a red herring. Even reading the correspondence between Bush / Blair one can essentially see that the goal was deposing Saddam, WMDs or not. And for those of use who read sources, the neo-conservatives in the Bush government made no secret of their desire to get rid of him. Their statements date back to before 2000 even, during the Clinton era.

WMDs were chosen as a means to get the neurotic American masses on board with an invasion. It was the most convenient argument, but it wasn't in itself of any significance. Heck, even Bush officials proclaimed Saddam posed no threat in the beginning of 2001. Imagine that....

No, Blair and all the rest like him deserve far worse than they'll ever get. They'll go on and make tons of money and live lives in relative opulence, while Iraq has been reduced to a pile of camel feces.

DaveP

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2016, 03:52:52 AM »
Quote
You miss the most important...
Depending of source, second war in Iraq kill between 200 000 and 1.4 million Iraqi... mostly civil.
I did cover this under " Iraqis turning on themselves" but not in detail.  In the UK he is being branded a war criminal by the relatives of the 179 British dead.

Quote
Apart from missing all the dead Iraqi people that didn't ask to be liberated of life

The major failing as I see it, is that there was a total lack of understanding of the tribal and religious tensions existing under Saddam's dictatorship.  We have seen this repeated in Libya with similar results after the fall of Gaddafi.

The result of these civil wars after liberation means that no-one will ever intervene again and atrocities like Saddam's will go unchecked in future. (witness Assad).

Remember, Saddam had already invaded Kuwait and Iran and had gassed 5000 of his own people, this and 9/11 was the context at the time.  The resulting current reluctance to intervene is evinced by Obama's policy in Syria.  This is not without consequences for the people there or him,  he being accused of weakness and allowing the Russians a free hand.

It seems to me that it's a case of "Damned if you do and damned if you don't".

The only successful recent intervention I can recall was the Brits in Sierra Leone, where we got rid of the warlord who was chopping peoples hands and feet off.  But there were protests at the time against that intervention too.

DaveP
Soundcloud: Delayed Action.

mattiasNYC

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2016, 10:50:47 AM »
Quote
You miss the most important...
Depending of source, second war in Iraq kill between 200 000 and 1.4 million Iraqi... mostly civil.
I did cover this under " Iraqis turning on themselves" but not in detail.  In the UK he is being branded a war criminal by the relatives of the 179 British dead.

The deaths weren't the result of "Iraqi's turning on themselves", they were the result of the coalition attack, invasion and occupation. Not even Saddam had such a track record. All you have to do  is read studies with even modest accounts of death counts by violence and ensuing unrest during the occupation. And don't forget that once you break something you bought it. Once you occupy foreign territory the responsibility of the people in it is yours.

As for Blair being branded a war criminal due to the dead Brits I agree with you. That to me seems like an inccorrect or inapplicable accusation. I don't even think "war crime" necessarily applies to him starting the war either. But regardless I think he's very "guilty, morally".

Quote
Apart from missing all the dead Iraqi people that didn't ask to be liberated of life

The major failing as I see it, is that there was a total lack of understanding of the tribal and religious tensions existing under Saddam's dictatorship.  We have seen this repeated in Libya with similar results after the fall of Gaddafi.

I don't think so at all. I think there was zero misunderstanding about it. The complaints about Saddam using WMDs on his own people for example, an argument used in the run up to the war, was over him using it on a specific group, the Kurds. Same argument as before the Gulf War "Desert Shield" a decade earlier. And then the Kurds started fighting on the side of the coalition.

On top of that Iraqi dissident leaders say they warned about it ahead of time, as well as general Zinni who lead a 'war game' on a post-war scenario back in '99, reaching the same conclusion on possible power vacuums, grabs for power and tension due to ethnic / religious conflicts. HIstory is clear on this.

So rather than being unaware of the dangers the people in power just didn't really care.

The result of these civil wars after liberation means that no-one will ever intervene again and atrocities like Saddam's will go unchecked in future. (witness Assad).

Don't worry. The west just needs a little time to forget. Look forward, not backward.

JohnRoberts

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2016, 11:51:47 AM »
Seriously? We haven't talked about this enough over the years.  How about the 150+ killed by a truck bomb in Baghdad last week?
Quote
You miss the most important...
Depending of source, second war in Iraq kill between 200 000 and 1.4 million Iraqi... mostly civil.
I did cover this under " Iraqis turning on themselves" but not in detail.  In the UK he is being branded a war criminal by the relatives of the 179 British dead.

The deaths weren't the result of "Iraqi's turning on themselves", they were the result of the coalition attack, invasion and occupation. Not even Saddam had such a track record. All you have to do  is read studies with even modest accounts of death counts by violence and ensuing unrest during the occupation. And don't forget that once you break something you bought it. Once you occupy foreign territory the responsibility of the people in it is yours.

As for Blair being branded a war criminal due to the dead Brits I agree with you. That to me seems like an inccorrect or inapplicable accusation. I don't even think "war crime" necessarily applies to him starting the war either. But regardless I think he's very "guilty, morally".

Quote
Apart from missing all the dead Iraqi people that didn't ask to be liberated of life

The major failing as I see it, is that there was a total lack of understanding of the tribal and religious tensions existing under Saddam's dictatorship.  We have seen this repeated in Libya with similar results after the fall of Gaddafi.

I don't think so at all. I think there was zero misunderstanding about it. The complaints about Saddam using WMDs on his own people for example, an argument used in the run up to the war, was over him using it on a specific group, the Kurds. Same argument as before the Gulf War "Desert Shield" a decade earlier. And then the Kurds started fighting on the side of the coalition.
Saddam used chemical weapons against Iran during his war with them.

The Kurds were protected from Saddam by a no fly zone enforced by the west.

Saddam also drained the wetlands fed by the euphrates river(?) starving out the poor Shia living there (Saddam was Sunni and didn't care about the majority shia population). 

Saddam incited terrorism  in the region by giving cash rewards to families of suicide bombers.
======

If civilian lives were unimportant carpet bombing and turning the desert sand into glass would have made the military campaign far easier. The west has been fighting with one hand tied behind our back since Viet Nam days when the bad guys started hiding behind innocent civilians. 

Quote
On top of that Iraqi dissident leaders say they warned about it ahead of time, as well as general Zinni who lead a 'war game' on a post-war scenario back in '99, reaching the same conclusion on possible power vacuums, grabs for power and tension due to ethnic / religious conflicts. HIstory is clear on this.

So rather than being unaware of the dangers the people in power just didn't really care.

The result of these civil wars after liberation means that no-one will ever intervene again and atrocities like Saddam's will go unchecked in future. (witness Assad).

Don't worry. The west just needs a little time to forget. Look forward, not backward.
I have posted about this (Iraq) at length over several years... stirring this  up again now is an unneeded distraction to dilute efforts on more important topics. 

The role of the UK in Iraq was explored at length already. They were tasked with securing the south and had their own unique issues down there. 

JR

PS: I wish I could forget, but mismanagement by the current administration has turned this into a complete train wreck, allowing ISIS to rise and spread their hatred and destabilization around the world.  Syria and Libya  are unresolved.  When we draw different lessons from history, arguing about it is not productive.

PPS: Words have consequences... I heard a sound bite from an Obama speech a couple days ago that made me squirm. I didn't hear the whole speech but the clip was him attacking police over recent shootings. I sure hope his words were not a rallying call for more people shooting police.  This boiling pot does not need to stirred up any harder by high profile politicians.   
Visit https://circularscience.com to hear what properly "cleared" drums sound like.

DaveP

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2016, 02:51:18 PM »
Quote
The deaths weren't the result of "Iraqi's turning on themselves", they were the result of the coalition attack, invasion and occupation.
6,700 Iraqi soldiers died in the overthrow of Saddam which took 3 weeks, no doubt about that, the coalition killed them.

After that a civil war started in which upwards of 120,000 died over the following ten years.  We know that the coalition didn't kill them, so it only leaves Iraqis killing themselves.  As far as I know, no mass hypnotism or psy ops took place, there was no financial inducement by the coalition, they exercised their freedom of choice to kill one another.

You can say that the coalition destabilised the situation leading to civil war, I can accept that, but the actual practical reality is that they chose to kill each other rather than simply live in peace together after Saddam.  The coalition did everything they could to contain the violence and suffered in the process.  It is true that they were unprepared for the consequences of removing Saddam, common sense would have predicted street parties and festivals after years of oppression, not mahem.

Now  we understand the bitter rivalry between Sunni and Shia Muslims.  It is true that defeated Sunni Baathists formed the core of IS afterwards, maybe after seeing the effectiveness of Al Qaeda.

The first world war had a lasting effect on the conduct of war and I think that after the Iraq war and Libya , the days of removing  murdering dictators are over.  We will be entering a prolonged period of collective hand-wringing now over future atrocities, but no-one will lift a finger to help for fear of another Iraq.
Source: https://www.iraqbodycount.org/analysis/numbers/ten-years/
DaveP
Soundcloud: Delayed Action.


Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2016, 03:12:08 PM »
The bad guys? In Vietnam, the Americans were the bad guys!

The West armed Saddam to the teeth to kill Iranians, as that war was finished in 1982 if it wasn't for massive European, Soviet, US and Arab funding of Iraq. The UNSC ignored Iraq started the war by refusing to condemn or sanction them, imposed an arms embargo on Iran instead, and for the rest of the war basically gifted Iraq everything it needed against credit. Iran had to purchase old weapons on the black market for 10 times the price, had no access to spare parts for its fleets, whilst Iraqi pilots were flying around in brand new Mirage jets with American generals planning their strategy for them in Baghdad.

The UNSC also, once again, refused to condemn Iraq for using chemical weapons on Iranians, and the Americans even claimed it was in fact Iran using them on the Iraqi's!

Seriously, let's not start with that 'the West had an obligation to remove him because he was a kook' crap. The West does not go to war for altruistic or security reasons.

And just for a reminder, they said 45mins...
« Last Edit: July 08, 2016, 03:19:39 PM by Banzai »

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #11 on: July 08, 2016, 03:17:38 PM »
Davep, are you honestly going to say the US didn't kill a single Iraqi after Bush declared mission accomplished?

'We know the caoalition didn't kill them' is crazy talk. Nobody knows how many Iraqi's were killed by US and British troops, and no-one will ever know.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2016, 04:01:51 PM by Banzai »

DaveP

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #12 on: July 08, 2016, 04:26:03 PM »
Quote
DaveP, are you honestly going to say the US didn't kill a single Iraqi after Bush declared mission accomplished?
Obviously not, they were attacked on numerous occasions afterwards and defended themselves,  Fallujah  an obvious example.

Don't get me wrong, I am no apologist for this war, but I followed it very closely and observed the change in public opinion over time.  I think the coalition expected a short war, followed by the setting up of a new government then a quick withdrawal.  The casualties came from the warring factions, who then turned on the coalition when they tried to intervene and impose peace.   We cannot argue over numbers because of the chaotic nature of the conflict, but I think that the overwhelming number of those 120,000 were killed by Iraqis themselves in sectarian violence and car bombs etc.  I remember the deliberate targeting of the contractors (western and Iraqi) as they tried to repair the infrastructure, pointless self-defeating violence.

This topic was about Blair being a war criminal or not, it is pointless trying to argue over the war itself, opinions will always differ.  If Bush and Blair had known then, what they know now, they would never have started that war, I think we can all agree on that.
DaveP
Soundcloud: Delayed Action.

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #13 on: July 08, 2016, 05:13:59 PM »
This topic was about Blair being a war criminal or not, it is pointless trying to argue over the war itself, opinions will always differ.

War is criminal by nature. War lords are criminals, theirs decisions kill humans. Blair is a criminals (like lot others)
At the end the word "criminal" put upon your head is only a matter of which side you are when the war end.

If Bush and Blair had known then, what they know now, they would never have started that war, I think we can all agree on that.

I absolutely don't agree whit that, they know since beginning, that's why French don't went in 2003 !!!
And if by any chance they really don't know, I feel deeply scared about this kind of guy (as all staff/intelligence around) which are supposed to run the world ...

Best
Zam

Kingston

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #14 on: July 08, 2016, 05:30:53 PM »
Depending of source, second war in Iraq kill between 200 000 and 1.4 million Iraqi... mostly civil.
Of course not all of them under US/UK bomb, but still the war situation.

Yes this is a horrifying loss of perspective by mr DaveP, counting his own only. I guess us countries not directly involved with the modern hybrid/civil wars still get slightly less brainwashing statistics.



Off topic: we've seriously problematic but goverment-approved statistics of our own echoed by all local media :( Important to notice whitewashing was replaced by problematic but goverment-approved as if there's a difference.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2016, 05:35:39 PM by Kingston »

DaveP

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #15 on: July 08, 2016, 06:27:40 PM »
Quote
Yes this is a horrifying loss of perspective by mr DaveP, counting his own only. I guess us countries not directly involved with the modern hybrid/civil wars still get slightly less brainwashing statistics.

No it is not a lack of perspective, because I am only dealing with the call for him to be prosecuted by the relatives of the 179 British soldiers killed in the war.  As far as I know, the Iraqi government has no intention to prosecute Blair and no other official body has called for him to be prosecuted for Iraqi deaths.

I do understand that you don't have access to UK newspapers and that english is not your first language. the statistics I got from an official source, not newspapers or guesswork.  As stated, the official source I used only went up to 2013, after that time the deaths were due to Islamic state, which is probably how you have got a higher figures.

DaveP
Soundcloud: Delayed Action.

Kingston

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #16 on: July 08, 2016, 06:33:32 PM »
What do you mean I don't have access to UK newspapers? Is this the seventies where did I land this time? What do you mean english is not my first lanquage? How many second lanquages do you have? I have three.

the statistics I got from an official source

The queen herself? The esteemed ruler of the kingdom?

ruffrecords

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #17 on: July 08, 2016, 06:33:37 PM »

History also shows that the people of the UK were so appalled by Tony Blair that they elected him 3 times.

I think you should substitute 'bribed' for appalled.

Cheers

Ian
www.customtubeconsoles.com
https://mark3vtm.blogspot.co.uk/
www.eztubemixer.blogspot.co.uk


'The only people not making mistakes are the people doing nothing'

DaveP

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #18 on: July 08, 2016, 07:08:07 PM »
Quote
What do you mean I don't have access to UK newspapers? Is this the seventies where did I land this time? What do you mean english is not my first lanquage? How many second lanquages do you have? I have three.
No need to get touchy, no insult was intended.  Your grammar was a little off so I assumed you had not quite understood that's all.

I only have two second languages so +1 to you.

Here's the Source: https://www.iraqbodycount.org/analysis/numbers/ten-years/ in case you didn't read my earlier post.
As far as I know, the queen doesn't do statistics.

DaveP
Soundcloud: Delayed Action.

mattiasNYC

Re: War Criminal?
« Reply #19 on: July 08, 2016, 07:12:38 PM »
  If Bush and Blair had known then, what they know now, they would never have started that war, I think we can all agree on that.
DaveP

I don't think there's any evidence of that. Only evidence to the contrary. If you look at the correspondence between officials the entire tone of it was "We need to find evidence of WMDs to sell the war". There was no desire to stop the war. As far as I see none of the key people worked at all for a peaceful resolution. None of them said: Hey, at this point, what do the inspectors need? What can we do to give them what they need? Instead, despite the official inspectors saying there was no evidence of any WMD stockpiles these people tried their hardest to sell it as a war against that specific threat. The head inspector even said it was only a  matter of months before inspections would have concluded. Avoiding war was possible but not desired.

Now, further more, I'm guessing you never read the policy statement by the neo-cons that ended up in government. But if you read their statements it was absolutely 100% clear that once in government they would all push for deposing Saddam, WMDs or not.

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article5527.htm

Look at the people who signed that.