IRAQ INQUIRY WILL BE JUDGED ON ANSWERS AND LESSONS LEARNED
Commenting as the Chilcot inquiry into the Iraq war gets underway, SNP Westminster leader Angus Robertson MP said the investigation would be judged on the answers that it provided and said the former and current prime ministers must give evidence in public.
The SNP have led demands for an inquiry into the Iraq war, and secured the first substantive debate at Westminster in October 2006 – at that time the vote calling for an inquiry was narrowly lost by just 25 votes – with 12 Labour rebels. It was backed by all Tories and Liberal Democrats.
Mr Robertson said:
“This inquiry will be judged on the answers that it provides and the lessons that are learned.
“Sir John Chilcot has a mountain to climb if he is to convince people that this an open and independent inquiry and not some establishment stitch-up with Downing Street pulling the strings.
“The whole point of an inquiry is to get to the truth about the Iraq war, and the conduct and conclusions of Sir John’s investigation must leave no doubt in peoples minds or questions unanswered. It is essential that both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown give their evidence to this inquiry in public.
“By every measurement the Iraq war has been the biggest foreign policy disaster in modern times, and those responsible for it have never answered the most fundamental questions about why we were led into this war.
“The claim that the war was about weapons of mass destruction was a blatant lie, a mere cover story unsupported by the facts, which has cost the lives of thousands of civilians and hundreds of our brave soldiers.”