Monday, April 17, 2006

SEEMS THAT TONY BLAIR HAS FINALLY REACHED HIS LIMIT. reported yesterday that Blair has announced that he cannot and will not support Pres. Bush's plans for war on Iran.

Tony Blair has told George Bush that Britain cannot offer military support to any strike on Iran, regardless of whether the move wins the backing of the international community, government sources claimed yesterday.

Amid increasing tension over Tehran's attempts to develop a military nuclear capacity, the Prime Minister has laid bare the limits of his support for President Bush, who is believed to be considering an assault on Iran, Foreign Office sources revealed.
Blair is expected to support the call for a "Chapter 7" resolution, which could effectively isolate Iran from the international community.

But, in the midst of international opposition to a pre-emptive strike on Tehran, and Britain's military commitments around the world, the government maintains it cannot contribute to a military assault. "We will support the diplomatic moves, at best," a Foreign Office source told Scotland on Sunday. "But we cannot commit our own resources to a military strike."

Like Bush himself, Blair's popularity has plummeted. His poll numbers are even lower than Bush's.

When Blair was elected at the age of 43, the youngest prime minister since 1812, "He walked on water, it was like he could do no wrong," said Ben Page, director of the Ipsos MORI polling firm.

Now his approval ratings have fallen to just over 30 percent. Nearly half of people polled by the London newspaper the Times this month wanted Blair to resign now or by the end of the year. Fifty-seven percent agreed that "Blair had run out of steam and is unlikely to achieve anything else as prime minister."

In fact, things are so bad that Blair doesn't even want to be in the same camera frame as Bush.

Hard to argue that the Iraq war has been a success when the United States has lost the support of its one major ally; and when the Bush administration has used up even the paltry reserves of sympathy it had left at the start of the Iraq invasion. That doesn't stop members of the fantasy-based community from trying, of course.

Speaking of which, here is a clever little rhetorical formulation one sees a lot among the fantasy bloggers (in boldface; entire paragraph included for context):

For a few retired US generals to be calling for Rumsfeld's resignation publicly even as we are embroiled in that battle sends a message to our enemies that the generals believe we are losing. And, as everyone with a shred of intellectual honesty knows that not to be the case -- that the only way we can lose is if the public will is sapped -- calling for Rumsfeld's ouster now not only sends the wrong message to Americans, but it likewise sends the wrong message to Iraqis, the vast majority of whom are optimistic about the direction of the country.

This of course begs the question. The sapping of public will is the result of losing the war, not the cause of it. It's an insult to Americans and a total abdication of personal responsibility to put the onus for losing this war on the sapping of the public will. The public will is sapped because the Bush administration lied about the reasons for war, because it transformed Iraq from a brutal one-man dictatorship to a lawless hellhole replete with all the ingredients for growing terrorists, and because it got us into a no-win situation where both leaving Iraq and staying in Iraq are recipes for disaster. That's the fault of the Bush administration, not the American people. You don't launch a preemptive war of aggression, screw it up beyond belief, and then blame the public's supposed lack of will for your own failures. That's horseshit.

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