Archives for posts with tag: Tony Blair

Instead of recognising that the world we lived in, with increasingly sophisticated communications, transportations and weapons systems necessitated sophisticated leadership that would bring the global family together, the then-leaders of the US and UK fabricated the grounds to behave like playground bullies and drive us further apart. They have driven us to the edge of a precipice where we now stand – with the spectre of Syria and Iran before us.

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Archbishop Desmond Tutu has said he will boycott an event in protest at sharing a stage with Tony Blair, former British prime minister, over his “morally indefensible” support of the US-led Iraq invasion.

The Nobel Peace Prize laureate decided to withdraw as a speaker on Tuesday at a one-day leadership summit in Johannesburg on Thursday after “wrestling with his conscience and taking counsel”, his office told organisers.

“Ultimately, the archbishop is of the view that Mr Blair’s decision to support the United States’ military invasion of Iraq, on the basis of unproven allegations of the existence in Iraq of weapons of mass destruction, was morally indefensible,” Tutu’s office wrote to organisers.

Blair’s office said he was “sorry” the Archbishop had decided to pull out.

“Obviously Tony Blair is sorry that the archbishop has decided to pull out now from an event that has been fixed for months and where he and the archbishop were never actually sharing a platform,” his office said in a statement.

 

Blair’s office acknowledged the pair’s different approaches to Saddam Hussein’s regime.

“As far as Iraq is concerned, they have always disagreed about removing Saddam by force. Such disagreement is part of a healthy democracy,” Blair’s office said.

The US-led coalition overthrew the Iraqi dictator in 2003 but also unleashed violence that killed tens of thousands of people.

Blair is the final guest speaker at the Discovery Invest Leadership Summit whose organisers expressed regret at Tutu’s “unexpected” withdrawal, saying his contribution would have been invaluable.

“At no point had Archbishop Tutu indicated his discomfort at speaking at the same conference as Prime Minister Blair and therefore his withdrawal was unexpected,” Hylton Kallner, Discovery’s chief marketing officer, said.

Other speakers at the summit include Garry Kasparov, former chess grandmaster and opposition Russian politician.

The visit of Tony Blair as a guest speaker to a conference sponsored by Discovery Health in in a weeks’ time 30 August 2012, provides an opportunity to comment on what has been Tony Blair’s ‘achievements’ that entitle him to charge extravagant amounts of money, for the pleasure of hearing his pearls of wisdom? Here are some of his more notorious ‘achievements’:

First, Blair the Anti-Social Reformer : Blair managed to ensure that the British Labour Party abandoned any pretence of being a socialist party and instead became a poor shadow of the anti-poor Conservative Party of Mrs Thatcher, so much so that Mrs Thatcher herself complemented Blair on his ability to cut much needed public services and undermine trade unions. A situation which so demoralised the British working class that the Conservatives were able to regain a foothold and now govern on an agenda that is amongst the most reactionary ever experienced in the UK, thanks to Blair.

Second, Blair the War Maker: Blair made sure that the alliance with the American Government under Bush was absolute, so much so that when the criminal decision was made to invade Iraq based on the blatant lies about weapons of mass destruction, and against the overwhelming wishes of the British people, he was prepared to abandon the sovereignty of his own country to become Bush’s lap dog and chief apologist. This decision cost the lives of thousands of innocent people, and has left Iraq and the region as a whole in turmoil. The invasion prepared the way for the pillaging of Iraq’s resources by US and UK based multinational corporations, thanks to Blair.

Third, Blair the Regional Peace Wrecker: Blair’s short lived role as a mediator to bring about peace in the Middle East exposed him as an unrivalled supporter of the Israeli Zionist project, and a loyal US Ambassador. As the person appointed by imperialist interests to try and bring about peace in the Middle East, he signally failed to take into account the appalling situation facing the Palestinian people, scattered as they are across the region, and blatantly ignored the worst excesses of the Israeli Apartheid State. The Palestinian people have been subject to accelerating levels of repression, with thanks to Blair.

We hope those who gather to hear Blair as a guest speaker this coming week bear these points in mind, and begin to understand why Blair is met with derision and disdain by very large numbers of people wherever he travels. Many believe that he should be indicted as a war criminal, and given the deaths he has been responsible for, not without justification. Others believe him to be a total fraud, who used his close association with ruthless media moguls like the discredited liar Rupert Murdock to gain power and influence, and who turned politics not into a positive force for social change, but as the preserve of spin doctors, unaccountable and corrupt manipulators of the truth, who care little for the common good.

We hope that those who intend to picket the Discovery event and expose Blair as the War Criminal he is, also remind those who have organised this so-called prestigious event, that by enlisting the support of someone like Blair, they have exposed their own limited and narrow interests, based as they are on profiting on the poor and sick, with special thanks to Blair.