Tony Blair, dictators’ buddy and war criminal

This video from Britain says about itself:

More Lies – Torture & The Special Relationship

This video contains clips highlighting the denials made by the British Government concerning the use of UK territory in CIA rendition “torture” flights.

By Emanuel Stoakes in Britain:

While celebrating Taylor [ex-president of Liberia]’s acquaintance with The Hague and his well-deserved punishment, Mahony referred to his conviction as “an aberration, the exception that proves the rule” about the workings of institutionalised global justice, given that “International courts are unable to exercise jurisdiction over many of the most powerful criminals” in the world.

Pointing to a pertinent example, he referred to statements made by David M Crane, the American lead prosecutor at the Special Court for Sierra Leone, which indicted Taylor and intended to seek the prosecution of Muammar Gaddafi, a man considered by Crane to be “the centre point” of a “long-term criminal conspiracy” that ultimately led to the killing of tens of thousands of people during the civil war.

In an important piece produced by The Times last year journalist Soraya Kishtwari wrote that Professor Crane explained to her that “indicting Gaddafi would have been the “death knell” for the courts as the countries objecting would have pulled funding … Asked why he believed there was opposition from the international community to act on the evidence he had uncovered, he said: “Welcome to the world of oil.”

This brings us back, aptly, to Tony, 2012. It was during Blair’s rapprochement with Gaddafi that this alleged prevention of justice occurred. The “deal in the desert” now seems like typical Blairism: questionable “good intentions” mixed with Realpolitik. As a result a weapons program was defenestrated by Gaddafi, who nonetheless continued [to] mistreat his own people. Britain’s entry into Libya lent false respectability to the regime of Muammar the “Mad Dog” and Libyan cash peregrinated in the direction of BP and the London School of Economics. Our credibly alleged role in “extraordinary rendition” followed hard after.

For the greater “good”, no doubt, Blair also unctuously sidled up to Egypt’s great oppressor Hosni Mubarak, whom he described not long ago as an “immensely courageous” man and a “force for good”. Mubarak was last week effectively sentenced to life in prison for multiple crimes committed against his own people (although, as Robert Fisk rightly reminds us, his greater offences –like those of Saddam Hussein during the time he received western support- were not counted in his … verdict [for] political reasons).

Some ineffable “good”, one presumes, may be being done by Blair and his crew behind-the-scenes in Kazakhstan, as John Rentoul appeared to speculate in these pages. This, in response to Nick Cohen’s recent piece in the Observer concerning the former Prime Minister’s employment by President Nursultan Nazarbayev, whose regime reportedly “shoots strikers, burns the offices of opposition parties and kills their leaders.” Cohen, a Euston Manifesto signatory, trumpeted the millions allegedly paid to Blair by Nazarbayev as the latest dividends of the former Prime Minister’s “moral decline and fall.” On the face of it, you’d be hard pressed not to agree.

“Excuse me, this man is a war criminal!” Lawley-Wakelin asserted before being bundled out of Leveson last week, another statement with which many would concur–vehemently. But Blair will almost certainly never suffer the fate of Taylor, to whom he cannot be honestly compared; even if Iraq was a war of aggression-“the supreme international crime” to quote American jurors present at the Nuremberg [trials].

Benjamin Ferencz, former chief prosecutor at the latter trials, made a compelling case in 2006 that the invasion of 2003 comfortably fits such a description, something that is hardly a fringe view among legal experts.

It is worthy of note that Ferencz’s legal work for the commission that established the International Criminal Court is still considered textbook.

Tony Blair heckled by anti-war protester in Hong Kong: here.

Shell and Gaddafi: here.

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