Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Trump Wars Part I - Blair's Lies Handed Trump His Bush Ammunition

Donald Trump certainly lit the fuse and set off an explosive exchange during the Republican debate in South Carolina when he challenged the veracity of George W.  Bush's justification for the invasion of Iraq in 2003. If that wasn't bad enough he labelled him a liar without reservation. 

This is a serious charge and not to be made lightly, especially since both George W. and his father George H. W. have conducted themselves with quiet dignity since leaving office and in a State that thinks highly of the Bush family.

As an independent observer with no horse in the race and with experience of the political scene in Great Britain it's obvious that this was not a spontaneous ad hominem attack on the Bush dynasty but a well researched, calculated political manoeuvre by Trump and his campaign team.

It wouldn't be a surprise to discover that the Trump campaign researchers discovered that the publication of the Chilcott Inquiry into Great Britain's involvement in the Iraq war is imminent and would not be complimentary to Tony Blair and by extension President Bush.

The invasion of Iraq was widely unpopular in Great Britain where the controversy surrounding the justification continues to this day. The consensus is that Blair had promised President Bush British support for his Iraq military adventure, then manufactured the threat of weapons of mass destruction (WMD's) some time later as justification. He then embarked on a campaign of lying not only to Parliament but to the British people also.

Unfortunately for Blair the British people were not buying his narrative.

Such was the dissatisfaction with the official explanation for British involvement in Iraq the Chilcott Inquiry was set up in 2009 to investigate Blair and the government's behaviour in the lead up to war. The distrust of Blair and his government was such that the inquiry was dismissed as a whitewash before it even began its deliberations.

The controversy began with what is known as the September Dossier published in September 2002 on Iraq's WMD programs. Every single allegation contained in this report was later proven to be false.

Then came the Iraq Dossier from 2003, better known as the 'Dodgy Dossier', in which intelligence on Iraq's WMDs was falsified with further accusations that the dossier had been exaggerated or 'sexed up' by Blair's propaganda department to make matters appear worse than they were to justify war.

The final straw came when British WMD expert, Dr David Kelly, was found dead under mysterious circumstances after his name was leaked to the media as the 'Dodgy Dossier' whistleblower, supposedly by a Blair henchman, when he questioned the veracity of Blair's WMD claims.

This again required an inquiry because of accusations of a whitewash and an official cover-up. The Hutton Inquiry was initiated to investigate and came to the conclusion that Dr Kelly had committed suicide by cutting his wrists using a blunt penknife he had carried since boyhood leaving little or no blood at the scene.

Rightly or wrongly the court of public opinion decided otherwise and duly considered it as murder most foul with yet another Blair government cover-up.

It was also widely reported by the media that other UN weapons inspectors led by Hans Blix and Mohamed Al-Bradei also cast doubts on the government's WMD claims.
(See here)

What could prove to be most damaging to both Tony Blair and George W. Bush will be the wider dissemination of the 'Bush-Blair 2003 Iraq Memo' also known as the 'Manning Memo'. This was classified as extremely sensitive and contains details of a meeting between Bush and Blair where it becomes obvious to the reader that they had made the decision to invade Iraq regardless of whether Saddam had WMD's or not.
(See here and here)

The Manning Memo was leaked with a copy making it's way to the New York Times who confirmed it's authenticity.

The Chilcott inquiry has been ongoing for 7 years or so and has been plagued by delays and prevarication; this is blamed on the fear that publishing these and other communications between Blair and Bush would cause an irrevocable breach in US-British relations.

The publication of the Chilcott Inquiry will be political dynamite and one can imagine what ammunition it would have provided to Trump and his campaign team should Jeb Bush have remained in the race and continued attacking his adversary in the way he had been during the campaign. He wouldn't stand a chance against Trump armed with ammunition like the Chilcott Inquiry.

As events panned out Jeb Bush has suspended his election campaign therefore Trump has no need to raise this issue again unless the Bush family put their heads above the parapet and decide to campaign against him.

In conclusion it should be recognised that if the Trump campaign is so switched on and farsighted to the point where they can dig up a controversial issue from the past and use it as ammunition in the current election campaign, then Bill and Hillary Clinton's past will be very fertile ground indeed.


  1. An old report on Donald Trump.

    1. There quite a few stories about Trump's generosity knocking around. I'm not sure they will be of use when the campaign gets really dirty