Another Blot on the Escutcheon, by Duncan Sutherland

Guest post.

Dear Paul,

I thought you might find it interesting to take a look at Nicola Sturgeon’s Twitter page following the publication of the Chilcot report into the Iraq war, “the UK’s most shameful foreign-policy action in years”, as the leader of the Scottish National Party’s group of MPs, Angus Robertson, has just said in the House of Commons.

As you can see, Ms Sturgeon would not agree that this report merely rebukes the UK prime minister of the day, Tony Blair. Nor would I, as a matter of fact. Although, admittedly, I have not read the entire document, which is a much bigger read than the Bible, it is apparent to me that the First Minister has been provided with yet more evidence to support her party’s case that there is a substantial and indeed troubling difference between the image which the UK presents of the way in which it is governed and the underlying reality, which does not inspire confidence. The video to which I drew your attention yesterday actually in its way gives one quite a good insight into the nature of that underlying reality.

Taking the UK to war without UN Security Council approval on the basis of a “dodgy dossier”, in which intelligence reports were doctored and spun to support a determination to follow a course of action which had been decided upon in an improper manner on grounds which do not credibly constitute a legal basis for invading a sovereign state and then failing to achieve the objective of the exercise, failing specifically to plan adequately for the aftermath of invasion, thus throwing an entire country into chaos and indeed anarchy from which regional instability has ensued, not to mention the plague of locusts which has spread over the entire globe and is known as Islamic State! This deserves and is receiving rather more than a rebuke.

Mr Blair may find himself having to defend his reputation in the courts now. As for the reputation of the UK state, it is not doing very well at the moment, to say the least. Every day another blot on the escutcheon.

Confidence in the UK as a state which it is better to belong to than to depart from is visibly crumbling as a result of steadily mounting evidence, I venture to suggest.

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