The Washington Post has made clear that a decade after the invasion of Iraq, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair is still George Bush’s poodle.
Blair said Bush continues to believe that the world is safer without Saddam Hussein in power and added: “When you see what is happening in Syria today, the sense of that argument is evident. . . . What it does is just make clear that these decisions are very difficult. If you intervene, it can be very tough. If you don’t intervene, it can also be very tough.”
The hole in this argument is wide enough for a lorry. It is “very tough” in Syria because the country is in the midst of a civil war. Iraq was not fighting a civil war in 2003; Bush and Blair justified intervention by claiming that the country was developing weapons of mass destruction. And, of course, the purported evidence of Iraq’s WMD depended all-too-heavily on reports from Iraqi exiles eager to bring down Saddam Hussein however they could—especially if it could be done at someone else’s expense.
Why is Blair still Bush’s poodle after all these years? He has little choice but to defend the former president in defending his own legacy. In for a penny, in for a pound.