Politicians are trying to discredit the Chilcot inquiry into the Iraq War as “bumbling incompetents” so their eventual conclusions can be dismissed if they criticise the political establishment, it has been claimed.
According to the Independent, several “inquiry sources” who were angry over pressure to rush the investigation into the war.
One source told the paper that the political establishment was trying to portray the panel as a “load of bumbling incompetents and amateurs whose eventual judgements cannot be trusted”.
He also slated “absurd, nasty hatchet jobs on John [Chilcot], most of them nonsense”.
Sir John Chilcot began his investigation into the circumstances of the war in 2009, but six years on the publication date is still unclear.
However, the Independent’s source insisted that forcing the publication of the inquiry would result in an incomplete report.
The paper also revealed that Chilcot and his three remaining panel colleagues were so fed up that they briefly considered a joint resignation.
Earlier this week, Baroness Butler-Sloss revealed that she was less than impressed with the progress of the inquiry.
Butler-Sloss, who set up and chaired the 1987 Cleveland inquiry into child sex abuse in three north-eastern England villages, told Lord Chilcot's investigation team that she "failed" to understand why it was taking them so long to publish their findings.
In a letter to The Times, she said that she too had conducted far-reaching inquiries, but had been dealt with them far more efficiently.
The Chilcot inquiry has so far cost taxpayers £10.3million.