Rupert Murdoch, CEO of News Corp., repeatedly lobbied Tony Blair to invade Iraq.
In the days leading up to the invasion, Tony Blair's Director of Communications wrote that "(Blair) took a call from Murdoch who was pressing on timings, saying how News International would support us, etc. Both TB and I felt it was prompted by Washington, and another example of their over-crude diplomacy. Murdoch was pushing all the Republican buttons, how the longer we waited the harder it got."
The phone call in question took place just days before a crucial vote on Iraq
, and was one of three personal calls from Murdoch that Blair received in that week alone.
Blair recently testified, admitting an "unhealthy" level of closeness
with Murdoch, oftentimes communicating more with him than with his own ministers.
In the first 19 days following the invasion of Iraq, Rupert Murdoch's Fox News averaged 3.3 million viewers, a 236% increase from the weeks preceding the war
. Huge increases in newspaper sales
were seen throughout his global media empire
, with advertising revenue soaring to record levels. That empire now faces serious calls for it to be broken up
posted by markkraft
on Jun 16, 2012 -
Bush and Aznar pre-Iraq Invasion--
Transcript of their private conversations in Crawford, Feb 22, 2003: "Quedan dos semanas. En dos semanas estaremos militarmente listos. Estaremos en Bagdad a finales de marzo", le dijo a Aznar.
("2 weeks. In 2 weeks we will be ready militarily. We'll be in Baghdad by the end of March", he told Aznar.) Consider this historical documentation. Full transcript here
, and audio clips in first link. [more inside]
posted by amberglow
on Sep 25, 2007 -
on Blair's farewell tour by Martin Amis. Accompanying video essays.
Highlights include a visit to the Green Zone in Baghdad (which "resembles the embassy district of a minor South American capital after a period of immiseration and collapse"), a comparison of Presidential vs. Prime Ministerial motorcades, and a few candid reflections from Blair.
posted by grubby
on Jun 2, 2007 -
New York Times to release Bush/Blair memo tomorrow.
The memo, which was mentioned previously
, but never publically disclosed, confirms that George W. Bush and Tony Blair were determined to invade Iraq, regardless of UN approval, and despite what both leaders told their citizens. More troubling, the memo also indicates that Bush may have conspired to assassinate Saddam Hussein, which appears to violate Sec. 5g of Executive Order 11905
, which states that "No employee of the United States Government shall engage in, or conspire to engage in, political assassination." This executive order was considered the law of the land
even after 9/11, when Bob Barr proposed legislation H.R. 19
, which was never enacted into law.
posted by insomnia_lj
on Mar 26, 2006 -
Bush and Blair slated by Pinter
George W Bush and Tony Blair must be held to account for feeding the public "a vast tapestry of lies" about the Iraq war, writer Harold Pinter said.
[Postroad: but then, what do artists know about politics?]
posted by Postroad
on Dec 7, 2005 -
Damning leak for Blair / Bush!
A leaked transcript of a senior British government meeting indicates that the Bush administration viewed war with Iraq as "inevitable"
as of July 2002, even though the rationale for war was "thin"
and that "Saddam was not threatening his neighbours, and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran."
It further states that the desire to bring about regime change was "not a legal base for military action"
, and that the only legitimate reason to declare war was with UNSCOM approval. Most disturbingly, it indicates that there were "strategies for dealing with Libya and Iran. If the political context were right, people would support regime change."
posted by insomnia_lj
on May 1, 2005 -
Dear President Bush, I'm sure you'll be having a nice little tea party with your fellow war criminal, Tony Blair. Please wash the cucumber sandwiches down with a glass of blood, with my compliments.
Harold Pinter, Playwright.
Some caustic open letters in The Guardian for the big state visit.
posted by serafinapekkala
on Nov 19, 2003 -
Welcome To Lajes Field,
located on the island of Terceira in the stunningly beautiful and unspoilt Azores
to the U.S. Air Force's 65th Air Base wing and U.S. Forces Azores. A curious little website, with its own particular
micro-culture and quite
tidbits. [Not to mention two lousy jobs going.
] Or, as they themselves put it: "multimedia products to help you better understand and appreciate the noble mission of the military men and women assigned to this outpost in the Atlantic." [In case you were wondering, it's here, later today, that Bush, Blair and Aznar, hosted by Durão Barroso, will hold their little war summit.
posted by MiguelCardoso
on Mar 15, 2003 -
This war plan forces me to stand by the dictator who tortured me.
Iraqi writer, an exiled dissident and victim of Hussein's regime speaks against war and sanctions: "You are "either with us or against us", they say. As an Iraqi that means choosing between war and the dictator. To be on the side of the oppressed does not mean we are unaware of the complexity of the situation. To campaign for the lifting of sanctions, for an end to the paralysing bombardment and daily threat of war is to stand by the Iraqi people; it is that policy which will help them to change the oppressive regime. Any change should be initiated from within Iraq, not imposed by Bush or Blair.
posted by talos
on Sep 18, 2002 -
Shoot the Dog, George Michael's latest release,
will be accompanied by an animated video which lampoons the relationship between George Bush & Tony Blair. The UK Prime Minister appears as an obedient poodle and the video also features Mr Michael's attempts to get jiggy with the PM's wife, Cherie.
Clips viewable via this Sky News report
'It could get slated, it could land me right in the shit, but I hope it just gets people debating because there's never been a more important time to talk than now' says the man who is no stranger to controversy following his dalliance in an LA toilet.
Here are the ABC
versions of the story but Lileks isn't impressed [scroll down a little]
and offers a curmudgeonly run thru the lyrics.
This brings up the old chestnut of pop stars as political commentators and further questions regarding the US-UK-EU-RoW relationships, dissenting voices in these various times and, of course, whether the song is actually any good? And what does Bono think?
posted by i_cola
on Jul 2, 2002 -
Bush and Blair Nominated for 2002 Peace Prize
''The background for my nomination is their decisive action against terrorism, something I believe in the future will be the greatest threat to peace,'' Nesvik said. ''Unfortunately, sometimes ... you have to use force to secure peace.'' ---Harald Tom Nesvik
posted by ezfowler
on Feb 4, 2002 -