During the heyday of George W.Bush’s “War on Terror”, his erstwhile ally Great Britain’s Prime Minister, Tony Blair scolded the late President of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez and the Bolivian President, Evo Morales in the aftermath of a European Union-Latin American summit.
Blair requested both Presidents behave sensibly and responsibly with their respective country’s natural resources. Obviously, Bush’s right hand man did not qualify how such ‘sensibility’ and ‘responsibility’ should manifest itself. But if we gaze across the world and look at how the Arab despots of the Persian Gulf spend their wealth we certainly can decipher what the war criminal meant Continue reading
As we once again darkly commemorate the anniversary of the British-American invasion and destruction of Iraq launched on 20th March 2003 it is important to revisit one of the more endearing fabrications that was peddled in the lead up to that war. Alongside the ‘45 minute claim’ and ‘Uranium purchases from Niger’, one wing of the British establishment also let it be known that Tony Blair’s involvement was due to his subservience to George W. Bush. The latter was the line enthusiastically propagated by Great Britain’s anti-war movement, “Stop the War Coalition” (StW) and also its leading mainstream journalist, the Guardian newspaper’s associate editor, Seumas Milne.
No lesser figure than anti-capitalist social activist and writer Naomi Klein vouches for Milne’s “sound” anti-imperialism.
A year before 9/11 attacks on American soil and the subsequent ‘War on Terror’, Milne wrote an excellent and aptly titled article “Throwing our weight about”. In it he took to task Tony Blair’s infatuation with military interventionism (or ‘humanitarian war’) specifically in Kosovo, Iraq (1998) and Sierra Leone as well as noting British interference in Zimbabwean domestic issues. Milne further endorses Nelson Mandela’s rebuke of Blair, in that he is, Continue reading
During the first week of General Khalifa Hiftar’s so-called “Operation Dignity” in Libya ostensibly launched with the modus operandi to military rid the country of armed Islamist militias and to establish stability, it wasn’t too difficult to find some in the British media highlighting the General’s supposed proximity to American intelligence and specifically to the CIA.
‘Operation Dignity’ was launched on Friday 16th May, by the following Monday the Financial Times (FT) was informing its readers that after the General’s defection from the Libyan army a couple of decades ago, he moved to a Washington D.C suburb where “he is said to have cultivated contacts with Western agencies seeking to undermine” Colonel Muammar Ghadhaffi, the former leader of Libya.
On Tuesday 20th May, the FT once again reminded its readers that Hiftar “is believed to have links to the U.S.” On the same day the Guardian’s Middle East editor, Ian Black referred to him as a “US-linked figure”, while Continue reading
In the first decade of this century, amidst the flames of the “War on Terror” which had hitherto taken in the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, the late president of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez made a private visit to London to meet Ken Livingstone, the mayor. Two days earlier British Prime Minister, Tony Blair had lectured and rebuked Chavez and Evo Morales, Bolivian President on the need to use the resources of his oil rich country ‘responsibly’.
According to the Guardian, Blair “called on the Bolivian president, Evo Morales, and his Venezuelan counterpart, Hugo Chavez, to show some responsibility in the use of their energy resources.”
Responsibility is the act of being responsible and the Oxford English Dictionary defines “responsible” as “having an obligation to do something, or having control over or care for someone.”[i] On the other hand, what Blair actually meant by “responsibility” was not qualified or spelt out. If by chiding Chavez and Morales, Blair is arguing that the two South American leaders are using their respective countries wealth incorrectly, inappropriately and unwisely, what exactly was Blair’s prognosis? Continue reading
Barack Obama’s election victory was greeted with a sigh of relief by most of the world, glad to see the back of George W. Bush. In theUnited Kingdom,America’s first African-American president was also heralded in with a good royal dose of cynicism by political commentators.
Whether it be that the honourable political commentator was of right-wing or left-wing persuasion, all agreed, the euphoria which greeted Barack Obama’s victory in November 2008 was comparable to that which greeted United Kingdom’s Tony Blair upon his first election victory in 1997. As such, and imperially armed with this superficial wisdom, they grandly implied that only disillusionment will materialise from the euphoria of Barack Obama’s victory. British commentators as politically diverse as John Pilger, Richard Littlejohn, A.C.Grayling, Marina Hyde, John Rentoul, Charles Moore and others drew this turgid comparison. Yet a close inspection of certain statistical facts and campaigning strategies which brought both candidates to power, could not be further apart. Continue reading