The Myth of Partner, the Lie of Poodle

The prevailing paradigm for debate in the British press and beyond vis-à-vis the British invasion and occupation of Iraq with the United States five years ago, continues to singles out two main reasons on why the British joined the invasion.  The first reason, upheld by those who advocated the invasion, is that Britain is the United States’s most loyal and principled partner and as such should stand “shoulder to shoulder” with the Americans; the second reason claims that Britain tagged along with the United States because it is a subservient and pliant ‘poodle’.  I’d argue that the two contending positions are two sides of the same coin and that to explain away Britain’s contribution to the invasion solely in reference to its relationship with the United States is very misleading.

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