Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Tony Blair: Accountabilty cannot stop with him alone.

Tony Blair's 'essay' on Iraq, Syria etc ::

http://www.tonyblairoffice.org/news/entry/iraq-syria-and-the-middle-east-an-essay-by-tony-blair/

I would like to suggest that he is not alone in accountability for the war crimes of Iraq and Afghanistan, and that meaningful accountability must include all culpable officials and other actors involved. He cannot be set up as a fall guy on his own. To do that would be a failure of equal proportions to the wars themselves.

Here's some pertinent points concerning his recent essay .... some background the mainstream media has avoided like the plague...

1. Blair claims that the underlying problem is "Islamic Fundamentalism". Some of the most extreme Islamic Fundamentalists are the Wahhabist Saudi Regime, Quatar, Bahrain etc - all 'allies' of the West. These States have are Religious Autocracies, and are extreme puritans amongst other things, and been funding attacks on progressive Islamic Social Democracy movements across the Middle East and further afield, since the 1940s, in order to protect their Power, supported by the Western Powers, who also helped to established these States as their local proxies.

2. The popular uprisings in North Africa, and Ukraine have a common thread. A progressive grass roots protest undermined by 'imported' violence from 'foreign fighters' who escalate violence.

This pattern is old, well used and well documented and we know that Power often has a hidden hand in terms of planting paid agent provocateurs within protests and activist communities. It's a standard tactic.

Once that cycle of violence starts things get out of hand quickly and the progressive grass roots movements are sidelined. Until the violence cycle ends. Which is not possible when Western 'military funding and training' is supplied to one side or the other.

This is true in Syria. A state that was/is a Militarized Government : The primary reason the State in Syria is militarized is because an official state of war exists between the Syrian State and the Israeli State.

It also happened in Venezuela, during the failed coup to oust Hugo Chavez in 2002. There were direct links to US support in these events.

The Syrian Government faced a progressive movement, was willing to make concessions (albeit slowly), then that movement was infiltrated by foreign fighters who escalated the violence, even to the extent of invading urban areas, causing locals to flee, which forced the State to defend itself.... then Western allied funding for those foreign fighters increased dramatically whilst laying ALL the blame for the violence on the Syrian State Government.

Thus the  indigenous movement for a Social Democracy is thwarted.

Indigenous Arab Social Democracy is seen as a threat, because it would necessarily involve projects such as Nationalising Resources, stepping away from Western/Eastern power alliances, etc, etc.... this happened also in Ireland in 1916, 1922 and in Northern Ireland in the 60s.

The escalation of violence is a deliberate tactic, and has been deployed many, many times. It's a pattern, and it's intentional.

3. The history of these areas cannot be avoided : the issue goes back to Colonial state line drawing which split communities and installed 'Power' that would work with 'Western Interests' (Corporations, Resource 'Management' etc.) and undermined any local grass roots Social Democracy which sought to develop 'resources' for the grass roots benefits.

4. History is also about patterns.

Look to what has happened in South America and understand that the Western Powers knew what would happen in Iraq because they had practiced it in South America - wars cannot be sustained for much longer than a decade, chaos will follow all wars, a traumatised people will take two or three generations to get back on an even keel, if they have a chance.

In South America the exposure of the US Governments and Corporations direct involvement in horrific practices known as 'counter-insurgency' in the 70s and 80s led to a partial withdrawal from such direct intervention, (the War On Drugs was a cover story to allow the continuation of this direct intervention) which allowed grass roots movements to gain traction and slowly alter the power dynamic. Bolivia, Agrentina, Brazil, Venezuela, Honduras, Equador, Nicaragua, Panama etc etc...

The internet in the late 90s and early 2000s helped the grass roots movements gain support across the world as information became widely more available, and the action of Western Power was exposed.

5. The proliferation of violence in the Middle East and Persia is a direct result of Western support for one side over another...

The Militia that emerged post invasion in Iraq were two fold : The US funded Militarised Police and local shia and sunni, kurdish and secular resistance to them. In other words the US created the civil war. All these groups lived side by side at the grass roots without tension (as they had done for many centuries) and in Saddam's Government were members of each grouping who participated in Power - the divide in Iraq was always along power lines rather than sectarian lines. The US support for one sect and the violence that followed created the sectarianism the now dominates the situation.

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The details of all these patterns are laid out in some detail, very well referenced and evidenced in Naomi Klein's opus: Shock Doctrine. And in that book she warned that the Economic Policies we are subject to in the UK today were on their way. She was correct because she has studied the matter in some depth, and sought out the evidence.

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Blair knows EXACTLY what he is doing - he is lying through his teeth, protecting himself and his allies. His words make sense only if you ignore the wider historical realities and his personal responsibility in causing so much trauma.

Lastly two quotes to illustrate the central problem of Power and the dynamic of integenerational trauma..

Reaching back in time, a quote from Keith Joseph, Conservative Education Minister under Thatcher...1984

"We are in a period of considerable social change. There may be social unrest, but we can cope with the Toxteths. But if we have a highly educated and idle population we may possibly anticipate more serious social conflict. People must be educated to know their place."

This reveals a preoccupation with conditioning the children of each generation to accept the status quo of Power as 'right' and 'normal', even if it causes harm, or trauma to a large part of the population, and even if parts of that population are so hurt, so enraged by their mistreatment that the are reduced to rioting in order to be heard or felt. It shows that Power is happy to accept low level rioting as it is something they can handle, or 'manage' or even utilise.

and

“Like traumatized individuals, traumatized countries need to remember, grieve and atone for their wrongs in order to avoid reliving them.” Judith Herman

I would say the the the UK or 'Great Britain' has not yet gone through the process of honest remembrance, grief or atonement.... and THAT is a big part of this problem.

Certainly Blair has not done this, he as studiously avoided it as have the UK Government. Bear in mind that Blair is calling for more violence, not less violence.

Blair cannot be held meaningfully accountable without exposing the thousands of other officials and other actors who were directly involved in pushing for and prosecuting the illegal and amoral wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to the same degree of accountability.



Kindest regards

Corneilius

Do what you love, it's Your Gift to Universe

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