Posted by Tim Ireland at January 10, 2006

Category: Tony 'King Blair

Respect?

RESPECT?!

I do apologise, but this latest wheeze by the Labour Party has rendered me (temporarily) speechless. Please excuse me if I delay my opening statement and instead simply provide you with the following links:

Please sign the ‘respect’ petition.

Please sign the ‘respect’ pledge.

UPDATE – Click here for the official and respectful web page for this campaign. (Complete with promised statement.)








Posted by Tim Ireland at January 10, 2006

Category: It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!

Immediately following last night’s docu-drama, Iraq: Why We Went To War, More 4 screened an edition of Unreported World entitled; Iraq: On the Front Line, where reporter Peter Oborne accompanied a patrol under the command of Major Joe Lazzari.

Joe had this to say to the elders of a village suspected of harbouring insurgents:

“You need to take responsibility. If you have ideas or problems, you must bring them to the council. If you don’t like the council, then you should run for the council. If you don’t trust them, then the next time you have elections, you can vote for new representatives. That’s how democracy works.”

No, Joe; that’s how democracy works in theory…. but let’s move on the the next village, where Major Joe Lazzari was informed by an elder there that – even if he did have cause to report suspected insurgent activity – he would be unable to do so because the mobile (i.e. only) phone system was so hopeless.

Joe offered him the following advice:

“In America, we pay for the telephone service. We have choices for our telephone systems, so that puts you – as a consumer – in charge. That’s what you have to get to is capitalism, (it) gives you choices. I don’t like my telephone company; I switch!”

Ah, yes… choice. It’s a fine thing, indeed.

BTW, I Googled Joe and just managed to catch a letter from him to the folks at home (Google cache), as passed on to the Williams Grove Speedway Forums on Tuesday August 16, 2005 by ‘Chip’, who says: Attached is the latest letter from Iraq, from Marci’s cousin, Maj. Joe Lazzari. Sometimes, his letters are NOT for distribution, and he will tell us so. In those cases, they do not go beyond the intended recipient. He’s a West Pointer, and knows very well what can (and cannot) be told to the general public. So, his e-mails never contain “sensitive” info.

1. Well, what do you know? Joseph Paul Lazzari *is* one of America’s ‘best and brightest’ (West Point – Class of 1992).

2. As this letter is intended for distribution, and the bulk of its content is clearly aimed at us misguided liberals, I’ve taken the liberty of archiving it here at Bloggerheads. Enjoy.

UPDATE – Two relevant links for you:
Senate GOP plans Iraq PR blitz
New U.S. Army PR Bypasses MSM – miltary blogs to distribute ‘good news’ about Iraq

(more…)








Posted by Tim Ireland at January 10, 2006

Category: The War on Stupid

BBC – Safety fears at ‘illegal’ protest: A police sergeant feared for his colleagues’ safety at a demonstration over new laws banning protests near Parliament, a court has heard… Mr Nunn told the court Mr Shaer used a loud hailer to call the police fascists and accused them of trying to gag demonstrators… He said he ordered officers to withdraw in an attempt to let the protesters disperse but his colleagues became more tightly packed among the crowd. Mr Nunn told the court: “At this point I was concerned regarding the safety of the officers and so I instructed Pc Hunt and Pc Minnahan to start effecting the arrests.” He said Mr Shaer was the focal point of the protest and when police arrested him Ms Gallastegui tried to drag him away.

You’ll pardon me for saying so, but what a load of unmitigated bullshit.

Exhibit A – Immediately prior to arrests:
Note that while Aqil Shaer may be holding the megaphone, it is Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn actually using it. Also note that the police in the background are not “tightly packed among the crowd,” but instead are quite relaxed, and enjoying complete freedom of movement.

Exhibit A

Exhibit B – The police move in:
Jeremy Corbyn is still in place, and from this photo one might very well get the impression that both men are about to be arrested. One might also surmise from this picture that – now, at least – the police are “tightly packed among the crowd”… but this did not happen until after they moved in and the media rush to get pictures of an arrest (clearly visible in the foreground) is a big reason for this sudden change/charge.

Exhibit B

Exhibit C – Pandemonium:
The media are right ‘on top of things’ and all police attention is on Aqil Shaer. Jeremy Corbyn (highlighted on the upper right) has been removed from the scene.

Exhibit C

Exhibit D – Aqil Shaer is arrested:
Note that protestors that were previously distributed around Parliament Square are now rushing toward the scene. Again, it should be recognised that it was the actions of the police that prompted this alleged safety issue. Oh, and the man apparently making a grab for the megaphone will want to watch himself; anyone using a megaphone in this area (who is not a Labour MP) risks arrest.

Exhibit D

(Original full-sized images can be seen here.)

The arrest of Jeremy Corbyn would have caused Tony Blair’s government some embarrassment. As would the arrest of Cherie Blair’s sister, Lauren Booth, who was also present and active in this protest.

It also needs to be pointed out that the primary reason for friction on the day was the police being deliberately and annoyingly coy about whether or not they were actually going to use these new powers. Even after people were arrested, they refused to say under which conditions/powers arrests were made.

Police claims that safety concerns prompted the initial arrest of Aqil Shaer are false.

Police claims that – at the time of arrest – Aqil Shaer was the focus of attention (and therefore the cause of alleged safety concerns) are also false.

Lord Falconer appeared recently on Radio 4 to assure the public that this new legislation is fair in that it applies to ‘everyone’.

It isn’t and it doesn’t.

It didn’t apply to those of us demonstrating on December 21st, because this would have caused Tony Blair embarrassment*.

It didn’t apply to Jeremy Corbyn, because his arrest would have caused Tony Blair embarrassment.

It didn’t apply to Lauren Booth, because her arrest would have caused Tony Blair embarrassment.

It did apply to Maya Evans, because allowing her to read out names of soldiers killed in Iraq at the Cenotaph would have caused Tony Blair embarrassment.

And it may or may not apply to a certain gentleman who actually lives within the exclusion zone… a lot appears to depend on whether or not he intends to cause Tony Blair embarrassment:

THE SERIOUS ORGANISED CRIME AND POLICE ACT – AN ABSOLUTELY GENUINE PHONE CALL FROM A TFT CONTRIBUTOR

(Brought to our attention by Rachel North and reprinted from The Friday Thing. Subscribe today for further weekly entertainment and enlightenment.)

Ring, ring. Ring, ring.
Click.
‘Hello, New Scotland Yard, how may I help you?’

‘Hello, I wonder if you can help me?’
‘Muh.’
‘Good. I’ve just been looking at the map of your protest exclusion zone around Parliament Square.’
‘It’s not an exclusion zone, sir.’
‘Muh?’
‘It’s not an exclusion zone. If you want to protest, you need to get permission. We’re not excluding protest.’
‘Muh.’
‘How exactly can I help you, sir?’
‘Well, the funny thing is, I was looking at your exclusion…’
‘Permission.’
‘Permission zone around Parliament Square and I realised my new flat is right smack-bang in the middle of it..’
‘And?’
‘I have a question.’
‘Yes?’
‘Well, you see, I have a roof terrace which can be seen from the road. I was just wondering whether I’d be allowed to protest there if I wanted to? I’m just worried about being arrested and having all my banners torn up.’
‘Who owns the property, sir?’
‘I do.’
‘And who are you planning on protesting against?’
‘Muh?’
‘Who are you planning to protest against?’
‘Does that matter? The point is whether it’s now illegal for me to protest on my own roof… Let’s say I’m protesting against myself.’
‘Are you planning to protest against yourself?’
‘Well, I don’t like myself very much at the moment, so let’s say yes…’
‘Then that’s a good question, sir. I’ll have to put you through to my colleague who deals with SOCRA [the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act] at Bloomsbury.’
‘OK.’
Ring, ring. Ring… Click.
‘Hello?’

‘Yes… protest… exclusion…’
‘Permission…’
‘Sorry, protest… permission… roof terrace… myself…’
‘Let me look at my map. Well, as far as I know, as no-one would be likely to complain if you were to protest against yourself…’
‘They might.’
‘It’s unlikely.’
‘OK. Forget me then. What about if I was protesting against my neighbour?’
‘On your roof?’
‘Yes.’
‘Well, then that would depend whether they were likely to see it and be upset by it.’
‘Not see it and not be upset? OK. Got it. Oh, only thing is, my neighbour is the Home Office.’
‘Muh.’
‘Sorry.’
‘Well, if you’re protesting against the Government and they were likely to see the protest then you’d need to come in and have a chat with us.’
‘Oh, right, OK. But only if I’m likely to upset them.’
‘What do you mean, sir?’
‘Well, if I protested *for* the Government that would be OK?’
‘*For* the Government? You mean protesting in favour of the Government?’
‘Essentially, yes.’
‘Then that wouldn’t be a protest.’
‘Got it. So it’s only illegal if I’m protesting against the Government in a way that might upset them?’
‘Yes, no. That’s not what I actually said.’
‘Oh, I’m terribly sorry. What did you actually say?’
‘I said that if you wanted to protest against the Government on your roof terrace then you should come in and have a chat with us first.’
‘But only if I’m protesting against the Government.’
‘That’s right.’
‘In a way that might upset them.’
‘That’s right.’
‘Otherwise I might be arrested?’
‘It’s possible, sir, yes.’
‘Ok. Thanks.’
‘Thank you sir, is there anything else I can help you with?’
‘No. Yes. Are you going to the carol concert in Parliament Square tomorrow?’
‘Parliament Square comes under Charing Cross, sir, you’d have to ask them.’
‘Right ho! Merry Christmas.’
‘Thank you for your call, sir.’
Click.

(*Allow me to clarify something I blogged the night of the carol service…. The police were hiding. Not keeping a low profile in order to avoid antagonising the crowd, but hiding. When I moved the crowd for (ahem) safety reasons, the backdrop for the media suddenly switched from the Treasury building to the gates of Parliament. About 30 seconds later, the police on duty at that gate received a call and immediately hid from view. The police were obviously under instructions not to be photographed anywhere near the event.)








Posted by Tim Ireland at January 9, 2006

Category: George W. Bush

Tom DeLay’s resignation letter.
DailyKos – Not a single Dem took Abramoff money
Guardian – Cracks in an evil edifice
Time – Never a Texas Two-Step: Bracing for the worst, Administration officials obtained from the Secret Service a list of all the times Abramoff entered the White House complex, and they scrambled to determine the reason for each visit. Bush aides are also trying to identify all the photos that may exist of the two men together.
Near-to-infinite thread at Fark.com #1
Near-to-infinite thread at Fark.com #2
Jared Craighead: “I have met met Abramoff, but was never in a meeting with him.”
Associated Press – Boehner, Blunt Vie to Replace DeLay








Posted by Tim Ireland at January 9, 2006

Category: It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!

Observer – Official or not, it’s no secret in the blogosphere: This episode is proof of a widening gulf between law and technology. The downside for Murray is that his memos did not cause the sensation he hoped for. This might be because they don’t reveal anything that wasn’t widely suspected; or because, since they were available to all online, they were nobody’s scoop and so no editor made a song and dance over them.

On the first point, yes it was widely suspected, but it could not be proved.

On the second, editors who place a ‘scoop’ status ahead of the public interest should hang their heads in shame.

Here’s evidence of someone else letting us down:

Tiny Revolution – NY Times: Downing Street Memo Background Is Too Good For The Likes Of Us: Most of the attention given to James Risen’s new book State of War has focused on Risen’s reporting on warrantless spying by the NSA – and how the New York Times didn’t publish it until State of War was about to come out. And of course that’s important. But the book also contains critical new background on the Downing Street Memo. And incredibly enough, this information has NEVER been published by the New York Times…. one of the most important questions about the Downing Street Memo has always been who exactly Dearlove met with in Washington. This would go a long way to answering why Dearlove believed “the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.” Pundits wishing to play down the significance of the memo, such as Michael Kinsley, opined that Dearlove may have just been talking to “the usual freelance chatterboxes” and perhaps was simply reporting on the “mood and gossip of ‘Washington.'” This isn’t what Risen writes, to say the least.

Also rather poorly reported this morning, with the exception of an appearance on this morning’s Today programme, (listen again here at 07:32), no-one in Britain is picking up on the Mail on Sunday report that General Sir Michael Rose says in an interview to be aired this Friday on Channel 4 that; “I think the politicians should be held to account… my view is that Blair should be impeached… I would not have gone to war on such flimsy grounds.”

Normally, the first line of defence against such people is the ‘benefit of hindsight’ argument. Too bad this in on record, then…

Daily Mail – Commanders warn against Iraq attack (30th July 2002): Tony Blair was under mounting pressure last night not to join any military action against Iraq. The Prime Minister was given a grim warning by King Abdullah of Jordan that support for a U.S.-led bid to topple Saddam Hussein would risk opening a ‘Pandora’s Box’ of fresh conflict in the Middle East. The Prime Minister was given a grim warning by King Abdullah of Jordan that support for a U.S.-led bid to topple Saddam Hussein would risk opening a ‘Pandora’s Box’ of fresh conflict in the Middle East. The King spoke out as it emerged that military commanders on both sides of the Atlantic are uneasy at the apparent momentum towards an invasion. They fear that trying to overthrow Saddam is simply too big a task, at least without the most careful planning. Those concerns were echoed by Sir Michael Rose, a former head of the SAS and UN forces in Bosnia. The respected former soldier, writing in the Evening Standard, said: ‘There are huge political and military risks associated with launching large-scale ground forces into Iraq.’ He said Mr Blair was ‘even more vague’ than President Bush about what weapons of mass destruction Iraq held.

Meanwhile, Parliament is back in session, but the Liberal Democrats will probably be unwilling to do much boat-rocking as they sort out the leadership question.

The Tories were equally gun-shy when they went through their change in leadership. But now the Tories have sorted this out, the policy of David Cameron, the man who wants to be our next PM, seems to be ‘feed out more rope’…. Why? For God’s sake, why? There’s already three miles of slack!








Posted by Tim Ireland at January 6, 2006

Category: It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!

1. 7/7 Anniversary Memorial ServiceThis Saturday at 3pm there will be held an informal ceremony at the Cenotaph, near Downing Street on Whitehall for the half-year anniversary of the London bombings.

Yes, you will be risking arrest.

BTW, Lord Falconer was on Radio 4 last week, insisting that Section 132 of the Serious and Organised Crimes and Police Act 2005 applied to ‘everyone’.

Oh, really?

Hey, does it apply to rebel MPs who take part in a protest vote or abstain as a form of protest? Can we test this somehow?

2. Iraq: The Bloody Circus, More 4, 9-12 January 2006

Starting with the docudrama Why We Went To War on Monday.

More 4 even have their very own Iraqi blogger on-site to enhance the event. Sadly, there’s no comments, no trackback, no… oh, we’ve been through this all before, haven’t we?








Posted by Tim Ireland at January 6, 2006

Category: It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!

Guardian – Whitehall unconfidential: the censors are on the run: But a document has fallen into the Guardian’s hands that seems to explain why ministers have become so bankrupt in these failures to stem a tide of disclosures (most revolve in one way or another around Iraq and allegations of our craven relationship with the US)… We have obtained one of Ms Yasamee’s private Whitehall letters, written last October. But publication of its contents here does not make it likely that the Guardian is in turn due for a knock on the door by Special Branch. She writes that the government is entitled to ask for alterations to passages in Murray’s book that “might damage national security, international relations or confidential relationships”. But this “depends on the willingness of the author to make changes”. She warns: “To succeed with any legal action, we would have to demonstrate clearly to a court that real damage would result from publication. From previous experience and advice … we know that the damage threshold is very high for successful court action. It is questionable whether this book falls into that category.” And she gives the game away by saying that it is questionable if “more public airing of Craig’s alleged grievances is in anybody’s interest”. In other words, attempts to censor unwelcome memoirs are largely bluff.

(Via Craig.)








Posted by Tim Ireland at January 6, 2006

Category: Tony 'King Blair

The Scum do their dutyI guess you can’t blame Blair for feeling a little cocky now that both the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats are doing the Reset Shuffle….

The Sun – Duty to Labour voters to stay: Defiant Tony Blair last night vowed to carry on as Prime Minister for the bulk of this Parliament – saying he owed it to the people. The PM insisted it was his duty to voters to stay in power because that is what they demanded at last May’s election. Declaring he would not flinch in the face of Labour rebels, he said: “I’m not going anywhere. I’m here and I’m going to see the whole programme through.”

More on Blair in a moment. First, we have to get on to Charles Kennedy and…. well, I have to begin by saying that I really feel for the guy.

How galling it must be for him to be lectured on honesty and the evils of drink by a bunch of drunken liars.

The Scum do unwittingly raise an interesting point in their editorial, though: Charles Kennedy is no George Bush, who also renounced the demon drink, but remained dry before standing for office.

But, years after ‘quitting’, George Bush still held the view that; “I don’t think I was clinically an alcoholic; I didn’t have the genuine addiction. I don’t know why I drank. I liked to drink, I guess.”

Denial. Even after the fact. Now that’s impressive.

For most alcoholics, the end of denial is the beginning of the end of the problem.

One might argue that this delusional state, common to most alcoholics, is the key to the ‘liar’ debate.

After all, in the past year, Charles Kennedy did not deny that he drank; he denied having a problem with alcohol. In his mind, this may have been the truth… and one can hardly blame him given his environment. (In this country, addiction to alcohol is treated differently to other forms of substance abuse – it’s all a bit of a laugh until a kidney drops off. You also have to consider that the man worked in Parliament. Anybody who has spent any time inside Parliament will know that it’s not necessary for me to finish this sentenc….)

Sadly, this argument is drenched in steaming piss when you consider that Kennedy openly admitted to lying to the public yesterday when he said that; “Over the past 18 months, I have been coming to terms with, and seeking to cope with, a drink problem.”

So… not a common and understandable level of self-delusion, but a lie. That’s it for Kennedy, then… and it’s not about drinking (insert joke about cheap shots here), it’s about trust.

On the high note of trust, we get back to Blair… via the subject of delusion.

Men do not choose their delusions. They may stagger toward them and/or willingly fall under the table with them, but they do not choose them.

So perhaps – just perhaps – it is unfair to call Tony Blair a liar.

He does, after all, claim to be acting in ‘good faith‘, in our best interests and so on… maybe this is a sign that he actually believes what he says.

When he took a rather selective view of evidence, intelligence and advice before going into Iraq, perhaps it was not the (now known) agenda that forced him, but the delusion that guided him.

When he claimed to be blissfully unaware of evidence or intelligence obtained by torture, perhaps – again – it was the delusion speaking.

Mind you, this line of thinking involves giving the guy a double portion of well-distilled benefit-of-the-doubt, and even if you did manage to reason in this way that he wasn’t lying, you would still have to take his delusional state into account when you asked that all-important question… do you trust him?

Further, you would have to ask; can you place your faith in a man who is so addicted to power (with a side-order or relish) that he refuses to give it up or even acknowledge that he may have a problem?

UPDATE – CuriousHamster – The Fluffers: Blair says “If you’ve won three elections then you’re obviously what the people want.” No mention of the fact that only 22% of the electorate voted Labour at the last election? No mention of the fact that 78% of the electorate didn’t want Blair enough to vote for his party? No mention of the fact that Blair had to draft in Brown to take a high profile role in the election campaign after initially attempting to freeze him out? No mention of the fact that this was because Blair was basically a liability at the election and that the implied message was quite clearly “vote Blair, get Brown”? No mention of the fact that the Conservatives had to drop that very slogan after they realised that Blair was selling the exact same message? Not a word.








Posted by Tim Ireland at January 5, 2006

Category: Consume!

Take Charles Kennedy, a knife, George Galloway and a wine bottle… and make up your own ending.

I’ll be over in the corner, with my head in my hands. Slowly rocking back and forth.

(Hell, I was only thinking just this afternoon that what we needed right now was a bloody good sideshow.)

UPDATE – Chicken Yoghurt – Let’s play house

UPDATE – If you were watching, you may recall non-celebrity Chantelle being disappointed to learn that she was not allowed to impersonate an *existing* celebrity. Here’s why Big Brother thought it necessary to stipulate this condition. (Another one here.)

UPDATE – How did I find that? Well, I started here, at the page of the world’s most convincing Charles Kennedy impersonator.








Posted by Tim Ireland at January 5, 2006

Category: It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!

You’ll want to start here:

BlairWatch – The Failings of the Press

Different incident, same issue, same problem:

Obsolete – To publish or not to publish, that is the question: Why is this Labour government so obsessed with secrecy, and our newspapers and media so inclined to carry out their non-binding orders in not naming the suspects? Apparently Nick Langham is entitled to his privacy, although the police and media freely name those who are wanted for offences, and occasionally “name and shame” others. In this supposed age of freedom of information, it seems odd that the British media is still prepared to give the government the benefit of the doubt, despite the fallout from the Hutton inquiry.

(Note to Strobes…. publish some of this stuff online. Please.)

At the same time, we have the sheer absurdity of the Bush administration proudly proclaiming themselves to be above the use of torture, after months of actively trying to block McCain’s anti-torture bill:

Guardian – White House drops long-standing opposition to torture legislation

But I have to rely on blogs and websites, not my regular glut of national newspapers, to relay the following information:

Boston Globe – Bush Could Bypass New Torture Ban: When President Bush last week signed the bill outlawing the torture of detainees, he quietly reserved the right to bypass the law under his powers as commander in chief. (Latest development here.)

So he was for torture, but is now against it, unless he wants to use it. And that’s not a front-page headline? FFS…

And on the subject of discretion (and whistle-blower slap-downs and media complicity)…. you’ll want to start here on wiretapping and move along to this piece:

The Nation – The Hidden State Steps Forward: When the New York Times revealed that George W. Bush had ordered the National Security Agency to wiretap the foreign calls of American citizens without seeking court permission, as is indisputably required by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), passed by Congress in 1978, he faced a decision. Would he deny the practice, or would he admit it? He admitted it. But instead of expressing regret, he took full ownership of the deed, stating that his order had been entirely justified, that he had in fact renewed it thirty times, that he would continue to renew it and — going even more boldly on the offensive — that those who had made his law-breaking known had committed a “shameful act”… Secret law-breaking has been supplanted by brazen law-breaking. The difference is critical. If abuses of power are kept secret, there is still the possibility that, when exposed, they will be stopped. But if they are exposed and still permitted to continue, then every remedy has failed, and the abuse is permanently ratified. In this case, what will be ratified is a presidency that has risen above the law… The Administration of George W. Bush is not a dictatorship, but it does manifest the characteristics of one in embryonic form. If Congress accepts his usurpation of its legislative power, they will be no Congress and might as well stop meeting. Either the President must uphold the laws of the United States, which are Congress’s laws, or he must leave office.

Liberal bias at work? Hardly. Check this out: What follows, from an Associated Press rundown on September 15, 1998, is a long list of newspapers that “called for President Clinton’s resignation.” AP added that some of those listed “did so before the release of Kenneth Starr’s report on Sept. 11.”

And while we’re looking at lists and the media lying down, Jack Abramoff deserves a mention. Here’s a list of people he made formal donations to. It includes George W. Bush… it includes Oliver bloody North!

That list leads us to this:

Independent – Bush hands back tainted funds from disgraced lobbyist

Why? Under scrutiny of the law, there’s no way to reverse a criminal relationship, even when you return some of the gains. But it’s not the scrutiny of law that Bush fears… it’s scrutiny of the media.

But how can one claim that the media is shackled by this administration, yet feared at the same time?

Because it’s been transformed from watchdog to rescue dog.

It’s been slapped about the face with false claims of bias by those who are shameless users of bias.

It’s been bashed about the body by claims of complicity in terrorism, by those who themselves who shamelessly torture and terrorise others.

Above all, it’s been effectively leashed by claims of national and international security.

And the same pattern repeats itself in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia.

That’s three administrations that have nothing to earn the benefit of the doubt, but still enjoy that privilege because of people in mainstream media who fear a legal/media savaging if they turn on their new masters. It’s almost as if they’ve forgotten the purpose of their canine incisors.

And speaking of the benefit of the doubt… here’s yet another false claim about Iraq that was followed by perhaps two editorials on Blair’s stupefying statement that; “There is no justification for Iran or any other country interfering in Iraq.”

Where are the front page headlines that read; ‘BLAIR LIES ABOUT IRAQ – AGAIN’…?

Independent – Anger as Britain admits it was wrong to blame Iran for deaths in Iraq: Britain has dropped the charge of Iranian involvement after senior officials had repeatedly accused the Tehran regime of supplying sophisticated explosive devices to insurgents. Government officials now acknowledge that there is no evidence, or even reliable intelligence, connecting the Iranian government to the infra-red triggered bombs which have killed 10 British soldiers in the past eight months. The twist comes three months after British officials first made strong assertions, widely reported in the media, of an Iranian hand in killing British soldiers. The highly publicised allegations emerged as America was locked in tense confrontation with Iran over its nuclear policy… A former Labour defence minister, Peter Kilfoyle, accused the Blair government of following President George Bush’s obsession with Iran. “Is this intelligence or is it propaganda?” he asked. “This is what happened in Iraq. I have a deep, abiding mistrust of what is put out by the Government and a deep, abiding mistrust of what is put out by the intelligence services. This is part of an almost unconscious urge to support whatever the American policy of the moment might be.”








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