3/20/2005

British intelligence chief told Blair the US had "fixed" the case for Iraq war

Not that we'll see this documentary in the US, but...
From Agence-France Press:
The head of Britain's foreign intelligence agency told Prime Minister Tony Blair that the case for war in Iraq was being "fixed" by Washington to suit US policy, according to a BBC documentary. MI6 supremo Richard Dearlove briefed Blair and a group of ministers on the United States' determination to launch the invasion nine months before hostilities began in March 2003, the BBC programme will claim on Sunday. After attending a briefing in Washington, he told the meeting that war was "inevitable", according to The Sunday Times newspaper. "The facts and intelligence" were being "fixed round the policy" by US President George W. Bushs administration, Dearlove said. The allegations against Blair just weeks before an expected general election are likely to reopen a feud between the government and the broadcaster. The documentary argues that Blair had signed up to follow Bushs plans for regime change in Iraq as early as April 2002. Robin Cook, the former foreign secretary who resigned as leader of the House of Commons over Iraq, claimed that the threat of weapons of mass destruction was not the prime minister's true reason for going to war. "What was propelling the prime minister was a determination that he would be the closest ally to George Bush and they would prove to the United States administration that Britain was their closest ally," Cook tells the programme. "His problem is that George Bush's motivation was regime change. It was not disarmament. Tony Blair knew perfectly well what he was doing. His problem was that he could not be honest about that with either the British people or Labour MPs, hence the stress on disarmament."

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