The vindication of Tony Blair
: I just heard Tony Blair’s speech to Parliament on the Hutton report. Brilliant: to the point, direct, demanding. He calls on those who lied about him to recant. We’re waiting.
The statement is here.
In conclusion I repeat what Lord Hutton said in his Summary, at page 322.
“The communication by the media of information (including information obtained by investigative reporters) on matters of public interest and importance is a vital part of life in a democratic society. However the right to communicate such information is subject to the qualification (which itself exists for the benefit of a democratic society) that false accusations of fact impugning the integrity of others, including politicians, should not be made by the media.”
That is how this began: with an accusation that was false then and is false now.
We can have the debate about the war; about WMD; about intelligence. But we do not need to conduct it by accusations of lies and deceit. We can respect each other’s motives and integrity even when in disagreement.
Let me repeat the words of Lord Hutton:
“False accusations of fact impugning the integrity of others … should not be made”.
Let those that made them now withdraw them.