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cal04 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 12:02 AM
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Blunkett: how feuds rocked the cabinet
Edited on Mon Oct-09-06 12:24 AM by cal04
Dissent over Blair's plans for Iraq war
Mr Blunkett, who was a member of the war cabinet, relates how ministers asked Mr Blair searching questions about the conflict and the lack of preparations for the post-war reconstruction. Donald Rumsfeld, the US defence secretary, is singled out for particular criticism by Mr Blunkett, who claims he enjoyed too much power in George Bush's notoriously divided first-term administration.

The Blunkett Tapes, whose week-long serialisation starts in today's Guardian, describe how ministers became frustrated with the briefings provided by Britain's military leaders to the war cabinet. At one point Mr Brown, who finally confirmed his support for the Iraq war only at the 11th hour, appeared to question the point of attending the war cabinet, telling Mr Blunkett he learned more from the media.

Mr Blunkett accepts that ministers misjudged the public mood in the run up to the war and tells how the consequences shook Mr Blair when a row over legal advice to the government broke out during last year's general election campaign.

The diaries make clear that Mr Blair was under severe pressure throughout the war and afterwards. Mr Blunkett relates how a tetchy prime minister snapped at him during one war cabinet meeting after Mr Blunkett warned that Britain and the US were fighting a hi-tech war without the modern strategy to back it up.
more in the guardian,,1890918,...
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