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British Newspapers Have Absolutely Savaged Tony Blair On Iraq

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There was no hiding the strength of national feeling toward Tony Blair's skirting the blame for the current Iraq crisis.

The Daily Mirror called the massacre of hundreds of Shia soldiers in Iraq by radical jihadists ISIS a "war crime", and coupled the image of the slaughtered men with a picture of the former Labour Prime Minister. Cartoons in the Times and the Independent lampooned Blair's suggestion that the crisis was a result of too little intervention, not too much, and an overspill of the Syria civil war.

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In the Telegraph, Mayor of London Boris Johnson said Blair had "finally gone mad" in his "unhinged" attempt to claim the 2003 invasion of Iraq is not the reason for the chaos in the country now.

And Twitter had plenty to say:

Here's the best of the paper's reaction:

  • The Independent
    "How do they get away with these lies?" asks Robert Fisk. "Now Tony Blair tells us that Western 'inaction' in Syria has produced the Iraq crisis. "But since bombing Syria would have brought to power in Damascus the very Islamists who are now threatening Baghdad, it must therefore be a mercy that Barack Obama does not listen to the likes of Blair."
  • The Daily Mail
    Headlined 'Fury at Blair the Warmonger' and calling the massacre in northern Iraq 'the slaughter that shames Tony Blair', the Mail ripped the ex-PM apart. "Having Blair as a peace envoy is an obscenity," the paper's leader read. "Truly, it's hard to know where to begin with this terrifyingly deluded analysis. "Indeed, it's mystery why - 11 years from the Iraq War - people bother to listen to a word of what this self-serving liar has to say. But the greatest mystery of all is that such a divisive figure continues to hold the post of Middle East peace envoy. To see him strutting the world stage as a man of peace, while Iraq goes up in flames, is nothing shot of obscene."
  • Daily Mirror
    The Mirror, opposed to the Iraq War since the days of Piers Morgan's editorship, used a full page picture of the dead on its front page. Sir Christopher Meyer, Britain’s ambassador to the US from 1997 to 2003, told the paper the campaign against Saddam Hussein was “perhaps the most significant reason” for the sectarian violence now gripping Iraq. “We are reaping what we sowed in 2003. This is not hindsight. We knew in the run-up to war that the overthrow of Saddam would seriously destabilise Iraq.”
  • Daily Telegraph
    In his Daily Telegraph column, Boris Johnson said Blair and then-US president George W Bush had shown "unbelievable arrogance" to believe toppling Saddam Hussein would not result in instability which resulted directly to the deaths of 100,000 Iraqis and hundreds of British and American soldiers. He said that by refusing to accept that the 2003 war was "a tragic mistake", adding: "Blair is now undermining the very cause he advocates: the possibility of serious and effective intervention.
  • The Times
    Despite carrying this derogatory cartoon, the Times' leader was relatively nuanced about Blair's comments on Sunday, saying he made his argument "convincingly". "Western adventures in Iraq were indeed a shambles, both in the war’s execution and its prolonged aftermath. Yet it is by no means likely that without it, Iraq would today be at peace," the editorial read. "Blair is also right that, intervention or not, this remains our problem. The time is past when western leaders can truly have faith in grand plans to remake the world. Playing a parochial blame game helps nobody, however, when the world starts remaking itself."

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