Scarlett's Reward On The Day They Hang Saddam

On the day Saddam Hussein was executed, we also received news of the New Year's Honours list-- a quaint little British tradition in which a range of titles are bestowed on people who have served their country well in the previous year, from Knighthoods, OBEs, CBEs, to the peculiarly named Knight Commander of the Order of St. Michael and St. George, which is given to people in the diplomatic service.

And can you guess who got that one this year, though it's not being widely reported? John Scarlett, current head of MI6, previously on the government's Joint Intelligence Committee. Who's he? The obliging fellow who, in the so-called "sexing-up" affair, agreed to the last-minute changes in the dossier Tony Blair presented to the nation to make his case for the invasion of Iraq. Fears had been expressed that the dossier, as it stood--replete with facts and other such inconveniences--would not make a convincing case for war. But by the time they'd finished rewriting it, having solicited Scarlett's consent for the changes, even half of the anti-war brigade secretly believed that Saddam had weapons sophisticated enough to launch strikes from Iraq on mainland Europe. It was a masterpiece of creative literature, way better than anything I've ever written, and it got Blair into Iraq behind George Bush with only a minimum of fuss.

Scarlett did his job well and on the day the deposed leader of Iraq was murdered and over seventy Iraqi citizens perished in a series of car bombs, he has been handsomely rewarded. It would leave you with a very bitter taste in the mouth if Iraq hadn't been tasting like poison on the tongue since it started.


Anonymous said…
Even if Saddam was indeed evil ... his execution was possible because our government basically lied to us about why we went into Iraq. If we'd been told, "Hey, Saddam killed this many people and we want to take him out," that would have been less deceptive, at least.

Still, I'm against capital punishment for a myriad of reasons. I wouldn't have Saddam to dinner, okay? But killing somebody for killing somebody is, not only juvenile, it's uncreative. I could probably commit murder if, for instance, someone was molesting a child or something, and I walked in on it. My anger and humanity would overcome my better judgment. But in capital punishment, there is planning involved. We can't say we did it in the heat of the moment when there was no control to be had. We do these executions by being premeditated (for which there are stiffer sentences for criminals in the USA).

I think my country might as well be spat upon. I'm extremely ashamed we've let all this crap happen. The only reason I don't move to Canada is that I don't want to give up on my country.
Bruce Hodder said…
I know, I know. I too am a patriot, though not in a way my government or the secret service could ever understand. One of the things I resent about the Iraq occupation and the torture and murder we have been responsible for is that each reprehensible act in turn degrades the international reputation of the British a little bit more. And the honour given to Scarlett is another example of that. Did they think nobody would be watching? Do they even care how bad it looks?
Probably not.
Anonymous said…
There are tons of examples of important evidence being exposed, which is then forgotten or ignored. We've had so many pieces of evidence against our president that the only reason he hasn't been impeached is because we're too comfortable to storm the steps of Congress. The moment all of our sons are killed in this war - or, for the more arrogant, the moment Germany stops sending us cheese and France stops sending us wine - we'll be closer to demanding answers.

President Bush has become the terrorist of which I am most afraid.