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News ::
CALLS ON BLAIR TO RESIGN (english)
11 Mar 2003
FOR THE FIRST TIME, A PROMINENT LABOUR PARTY PARLIAMENTARIAN
CALLS, PUBLICLY, ON TONY BLAIR TO RESIGN. Tam Dalyell, Father of
the House of Commons chose the French "France-Inter" radio station this morning, to call for Blair to resign, and make way for a new government, since he has become so committed to the war course, that he has lost the ability to handle emerging situations.
[Source: March 10 Agence-France Press/France-Inter]

FOR THE FIRST TIME, A PROMINENT LABOUR PARTY PARLIAMENTARIAN
CALLS, PUBLICLY, ON TONY BLAIR TO RESIGN. Tam Dalyell, Father of
the House of Commons chose the
French "France-Inter" radio station this morning, to call for
Blair to resign, and make way for a new government, since he has
become so committed to the war course, that he has lost the
ability to handle emerging situations. Only a new government
could act effectively, now, for Britain.

[Source: March 10 Composite British media; Germany's NTV]

TONY BLAIR SUFFERS THE MOST SEVERE JOLT, AS BRITISH OVERSEAS
DEVELOPMENT SECRETARY CLARE SHORT DENOUNCES THE BLAIR WAR COURSE
as "extraordinarily reckless," and threatens, "I will resign," if
Blair continues to "defend the indefensable," and goes to war
with Iraq, without a second United Nations resolution.

Short herself demanded to be on BBC-Radio 4's "Westminster Hour"
yesterday, declaring that it is now "ten minutes to midnight,"
and that she must speak out.

This was the lead story in all British newspapers today. The
Labour-linked Guardian began its article, that Blair is now
"facing the opening of the floodgates to a catastrophic
rebellion," against his Iraq policy. Indeed, 10 Downing Street
was so unnerved, by what Short had done, that, this morning,
Blair presided over a "crisis meeting," to deal with the Short affair.

As BBC stressed, he was in no position to fire her,
because that would make her into a "national martyr." After the
crisis meeting, it was announced that she would stay on the job.

In her interview, Short denounced the rush to war as "deeply
reckless, reckless for the world, reckless for the undermining of
the United Nations in this disorderly world, which is wider than
Iraq, reckless with our own government....It's extraordinarily
reckless. I'm very surprised by it....Our failure to use our
influence properly is so dangerous for the world....Allowing the
world to be so bitterly divided, the division in Europe, the
sense of anger and injustice in the Middle East, is very, very dangerous."

Short also completely undermined 10 Downing Street's initial
claim, that it was "surprised" by the vehemence of her
statements, as she had never made such feelings clear to Blair.

She told BBC, to the contrary, that she had raised her
objections, in frequent detailed talks, with both Blair and
Foreign Secretary Jack Straw: "People like me are being told,
`Yes, this is all under consideration.' And then the spin, the
next day, is, `We are ready for war.'"

Indeed, she has wrecked the latest "spin," which was the
announcement a couple of days ago, that despite appearances of
internal dissent, the Blair Cabinet was "rock solid" behind the
Prime Minister. This is doubly untrue, as Short's interview was
accompanied by a statement by Andy Reed, who is inside the
Cabinet, as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Environment
Secretary Margaret Beckett, that he is resigning NOW from the
government, in protest against the rush to war. Other
resignations are in the offing, especially if Blair goes to war
without a second UN resolution.

Germany's NTV network has been running feature stories on
Blair's debacle all day, with headlines like, "Blair in the Vise."

Making matters worse, the former Labour Minister for the
Armed Forces Doug Henderson tells the Guardian, that 95% of
Labour Party members are against an Iraq war.

And, there is growing talk in the British press, as today in
an op-ed in the Guardian by lawyer Mark Littman, that Blair could
be tried, under the Nuremberg Tribunal code, if he goes ahead
with a pre-emptive war against Iraq.

[Source: German news wires, dailies, March 10]

UPON ARRIVING IN BAGHDAD, TWO PROMINENT GERMAN CHRISTIAN
DEMOCRATS ATTACK BUSH ADMINISTRATION. Willy Wimmer and Peter
Gauweiler, both members of the German parliament, Bundestag, are
visiting Iraq at the invitation of Chaldean Patriarch Raphael I
Bidawid, to meet and pray for peace, with members of the various
Christian churches in Iraq.

In several interviews on German media over the weekend,
Wimmer, a former asistant Defense Minister, said that "It cannot
be tolerated that one power should act without regard for
international law and the United Nations. This would open the
door to the rule by the fist." Wimmer also said, "The United
States being a Christian nation, the next days will show whether
the bishops or the generals have more power." Gauweiler made
similar remarks, including, "How many children will we kill,
before Iraq is totally disarmed?"

The visit of the two politicians, both outspoken opponents
to the war, was arranged through the Vatican, outside of the
usual Christian Democratic party structures--maybe in view of the
fact that CDU Chairwoman Angela Merkel is pro-Bush. Cardinal
Josef Ratzinger personally passed on the invitation, also
contacting the leading Catholic and Lutheran bishops in Bavaria,
Cardinal Friedrich Wetter and Johann Friedrich, both also
outspoken opponents of the war. They then gave Wimmer and
Gauweiler messages to be conveyed to the Christians in Iraq.

[Source: Frankfurter Allgemeine, March 10]

FRANKFURTER ALLGEMEINE ZEITUNG ESSAY RECALLS THUCYDIDES'
ACCOUNT OF THE FALL OF THE ATHENIAN EMPIRE. In a reply to an
earlier essay by Hungarian Gyorgy Konrad, who argued for war on
Iraq, Ivan Nagel, Hungarian-born but living in Germany since
1948, argued against the "untruthful war," today.

Stating that opposition against the war on Iraq is in no way
"anti-Americanism," Nagel quotes from Sen. Robert Byrd's Feb. 12
speech, making the point that Bush has split alliances and has
ruined leading international institutions such as NATO, and the
United Nations maybe for all times. Nagel likens such leading
U.S. propaganda machines such as Fox TV to the media he recalls
from the Soviet era.

Going beyond these arguments, Nagel then appeals to readers
to study the period of 431-404 BC--when Athens, as Thucydides
describes in his {The Peloponnesian War}, became an empire and
collapsed. This was a period when flight-forward activism was
praised, at the expense of balanced deliberations, when
dissidents to Athens' imperialism were tge target of much more
hatred than "normal" enemies. And, Nagel recalls, Thucydides
wrote this history, because he wanted to warn future generations
against making the same mistake.


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