The Guardian reports on the contents of an upcoming Beeb interview with Tony Blair, in which he suggests he would have invaded Iraq even if he had to offer a different reason for it, other than WMD. (h/t Steve)

Tony Blair has said he would have invaded Iraq even without evidence of weapons of mass destruction and would have found a way to justify the war to parliament and the public.

The former prime minister made the confession during an interview with Fern Britton, to be broadcast on Sunday on BBC1, in which he said he would still have thought it right to remove Saddam Hussein from power.

“If you had known then that there were no WMDs, would you still have gone on?” Blair was asked. He replied: “I would still have thought it right to remove him [Saddam Hussein]”.
Significantly, Blair added: “I mean obviously you would have had to use and deploy different arguments about the nature of the threat.”

What I find really interesting from this story, though, is his further admission–that he supported the invasion because without removing Saddam, it would have been hard to change the region.

“This was obviously the thing that was uppermost in my mind. The threat to the region. Also the fact of how that region was going to change and how in the end it was going to evolve as a region and whilst he was there, I thought and actually still think, it would have been very difficult to have changed it in the right way.”

I really really really hope Fern Britton went on to ask him whether he thinks the catastrophic war against Iraq has, in the end, “changed [the region] in the right way.”



Marcy Wheeler aka Emptywheel is an American journalist whose reporting specializes in security and civil liberties.