Home > Middle East, The Politics of War > Blair-Bush Iraq war transcript may be suppressed.

Blair-Bush Iraq war transcript may be suppressed.

By   Tuesday 17th July 2012.    Find Full Article Here:-

Government may block information tribunal ruling that ordered record of phone conversation to be released, sources confirm.

George Bush and Tony Blair, pictured at the White House

George Bush and Tony Blair, pictured at the White House, reportedly discussed the opposition of French president, Jacques Chirac, to invading Iraq. Photograph: Dan Chung/The Guardian

An explosive transcript of one of Tony Blair‘s final conversations with George Bush before the invasion of Iraq may be suppressed by the coalition government, Whitehall sources have confirmed.

Dominic Grieve, the attorney general, believes there is “a case to answer” in favour of blocking an information tribunal ruling that ordered the former leaders’ telephone exchange to be released in the public interest.

The then British prime minister and US president reportedly discussed the opposition of the the then French president, Jacques Chirac, to military action that he had voiced in a television interview two days earlier.

The proposed veto of the transcript’s release would be discussed by the cabinet within weeks, sources confirmed. Blair and the current Labour leader, Ed Miliband, were asked their opinion on the proposal last week.

If the government halts publication it would be the third time the coalition has overruled an information tribunal ruling since January. This is despite promises from David Cameron and Nick Clegg that they would lead the most transparent government ever.

Clare Short, international development secretary at the time, said Grieve’s proposal was “truly shocking”.

“We saw under Tony Blair that the position of the attorney general, in that case with Lord Goldsmith, had become increasingly politicised, and I hope we are not seeing the same now.

“I can only conclude that, by putting this to cabinet, the present government is trying to protect the right of future prime ministers to deceive the British people in the way that Blair did,” she said.

Blair and Bush are believed to have talked on 12 March 2003 about the possibility of military action in Iraq without a promised second UN security council resolution backing such action. Blair has since repeatedly blamed Chirac for the failure to get a second resolution.

Four months ago, the information tribunal ruled that the government should disclose some of the conversation following a freedom of information request by Stephen Plowden, a private individual who requested disclosure of the entire conversation.

Advertisements
  1. No comments yet.
  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: