MPs call for Blair to face 'contempt' proceedings
Senior MPs from both sides of the House of Commons have called for 'contempt of Parliament' proceedings to be initiated against Tony Blair. The proceedings were called for in light of the evidence presented in the Chilcot report. MPs stated that the Parliament was kept in the dark up until the announcement of the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
Tony Blair: A profile
Tony Blair, aka Anthony Blair served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1997 to 2007. He represents the Labour Party of the UK and is the only leader from the party to serve as the Prime Minister for 10 years. Blair supported former US Presidents George Bush's foreign policy and played a major role in the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq.
The Iraq War of 2003
After months of political chaos in Iraq, the US said it would wage war against Iraq if it's ruler, Sadam Hussein would not step down. The two nations had a strained relationship after tensions arose when Hussein allegedly threatened to and later executed terrorist-related activities in Iraq. The US, along with nations such as UK, later launched war in Iraq in 2003.
Britain's role in Iraq War
Britain was among a 26-nation coalition led by the United States, and held the largest representation in the war after the US. At the initial stages of the war, it had around 46,000 British combat troops fighting in Iraq.
2003 - 2009: Britain after the Iraq War
After six long years of waging war on Iraqi soil, the British troops returned home, but after the deaths of several amongst them. Costing Britain over 6.5 billion pounds, the war was touted to be an expensive affair, with estimates calculating that it cost the nation almost 31 pounds every second. The invasion also resulted in the deaths of 179 military personnel.
The Chilcot Inquiry
The Chilcot Inquiry was established as a means to investigate the role of Britain in the Iraq war. It is also known as the Iraq War Enquiry, and had been named after Sir John Chilcot, who was chairing the investigation. The committee was set up by the then Prime Minister Gordon Brown, to probe the decisions taken during and after the war.
Invading Iraq was unnecessary : Report
An enquiry by former civil servant, John Chilcot has revealed that UK's invasion into Iraq was totally unnecessary. The two million word report was released after seven years of investigation. Letters between Bush and Blair were released which show that Blair was ready to give whatever help needed to the US. Blair defended himself saying that he does not regret the decisions he took.
Blair defends decision to wage war on Iraq
"If I was back in the same place, with the same information I would take the same decision because obviously that was the decision I believe was right." - British Prime Minister Tony Blair says, defending the decision he took while at office.
Some damning details of the report
The report revealed several glaring miscalculations by Tony Blair, including a letter sent to George W Bush before the invasion where Blair wrote "I will be with you whatever", without consulting his government. It added that none of the UK's objectives envisioned in 2003 were met and instead troops were forced to make "humiliating deals" with militias to avoid attacks.
UK media lambasts Blair's Iraq choices
Editorials in newspapers as well as televised coverage of the Chilcot report severely criticised Tony Blair over his decisions on the Iraq war. An editorial in The Sun, Britain's top selling newspaper stated that Blair's decision was "a monumental delusion." Blair said he stood by his decision, even as he appeared close to tears saying he "felt more sorrow that anyone could imagine."