Friday, July 30, 2010

England doesn't care about the Iraq War?

"But it wasn't the Iraq War that did the Labour Party in, since the British people, like their American counterparts, are keen to forget that fiasco," scribbled eternal dumb ass Amitabh Pal at The Progressive in May. (Rebecca called him out here.) And that bag gas baggery just keeps on giving. Gas baggery, for the uninitatied, is what takes place on the Sunday chat & chews where woefully underinformed 'journalists' weigh in on every topic under the sun despite being immensely unqualified to offer anything even adjacent to an informed opinion. We're really not supposed to get gas baggery from so-called independent media; however, it's cheap to produce so it swams 'independent' media the same way it does the yack-fests. And Amitabh Pal's gas baggery is worth calling out so frequently because -- as Labour polls ahead and following the election demonstrated -- the Iraq War did have a huge impact on the elections and the Iraq War continues to be a significant topic in England.

Take yesterday when those vying for leader of the Labour Party met up for a BBC Radio 5 live debate moderated by Victoria Derbyshire (link has video of excerpt below).

Ed Balls: I was in Parliament at the time. I took a decision. It was the most agonizing process I have ever been through in my life. I have been over it and over it ever since. The reason I voted for the war was because the leader of the Iraqi Kurds pleaded with backbench Labour MPs to vote for the war because he said his people had no chance ever of being free from Saddam. The weapons inspectors, if they'd done their job and then eventually come to the conclusion that there were no weapons, that probably would have been a very bloody civil war in Iraq. With hindsight we look back. You know I look back at the lack of post-war planning and it horrifies me. But when I go back to that vote, did I do the right thing for the right reasons? And I believe I did and I'm not going to change that position just because I'm standing for the leadership position.

Victoria Derbyshire: Okay, would you --

Ed Miliband: First of all, first of all, I did tell people at the time that I was against the war -- you asked me. But secondly --

Ed Balls: Well you didn't tell me.

Ed Miliband: -- it's a really, it's a really fundamental --

Victoria Derbyshire: Sorry, what was that Ed Balls?

Ed Balls: Well I, you know I have to say, in 2005, the Times [of London] newspaper asked us whether we would have voted for the war? I said in 2005, I would have voted for the war. Ed didn't answer the question of the Times' newspaper --

Ed Miliband: I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I --


Ed Miliband: -- when I was standing for selection, my constitencuency party asked me if I was against the war and I said I was. But look, but look, the real issue here is not some great claim of moral superiority in 2003, the real issue is do you recognize the mistakes that were made and do you recognize the fact that we hitched our wagon to the United States on foreign policy in a way that was a profound mistake. And-and it's not just about the loss of trust that there weren't WMD, it is a profound issue about our foreign policy and about whether we're willing to say that actually there are times when we can't just go along with what the US says.

Victoria Derbyshire: So if you were to become leader, you would apologize, would you?

Ed Miliband: Yes, I would.

The Press Trust of India reports on the latest polling which has David Miliband in the lead with 37% of respondents, followed by his brother Ed Miliband with 29%, Diane Abbot with 12% and Ed Balls with 11%. I know and like both Miliband brothers. In the May election, Labour suffered huge losses and a power-sharing coalition between the Conservative Party and the Liberal Democrats is now in charge. The latest poll leads Mehdi Hasan to declare, "The next Labour leader will be called Miliband" (New Statesman). And click here for an analysis of the race by Hasan that was written before the latest polling.

We'll go out with the Senate Democratic Policy Committee. The DPC video page has new videos on small business. We'll note Senator Patty Murray.

And we'll note Senator Bill Nelson.

Normally, this is a longer entry. Normally this entry goes up a lot sooner. There were problems this morning and my apologies for the lateness. I'm not sure what the problem was but we're leaving out a huge portion due to the fact that I don't have time to hunt down the URL that prevented this from posting.

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