Better late than never?

by Stephen Tall on June 11, 2007

The Tories have today called for an inquiry into the war in Iraq, with shadow Foreign Secretary William Hague arguing, according to the BBC, it should be along the lines of the wide-ranging inquiry into the Falklands War.

Sound familiar? Yep. Here’s why:

Tony Blair claims his Government has been open and straightforward on Iraq. But every piece of information has been wrung out of them in the face of stiff resistance.
It took the death of David Kelly before, at the Hutton Inquiry, we found out the truth behind the dodgy dossier and the infamous 45 minute claim.
It took an announcement from President Bush before Tony Blair would agree to another inquiry, the Butler Inquiry, into what went wrong with the intelligence.
And we have still not had a proper Inquiry into the actions and judgements of ministers themselves – as we did after the Falklands war.
So I call again today for a proper inquiry into how we went to war in Iraq.

Speech by Lib Dem leader, Charles Kennedy, 25th April 2005.

There was even a cross-party call for an inquiry into the conduct of the war – with Ming Campbell, Ken Clarke and Alex Salmond among the signatories – in November 2005. You can find the list of the names of those who signed here.

You will search in vain for the names of David Cameron and William Hague.

It’s good the Tories are finally acknowledging the need for an inquiry (albeit at an unspecified point in the future). Even better if they’d recognised years ago the damage their backing of the invasion of Iraq would have on the people of that country, and the rest of the Middle East.