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Peter Beamont's Lessons in Civility and Honest Engagement

 
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joe emersberger



Joined: 24 Jan 2004
Posts: 513
Location: Windsor, Onatrio, Canada

Post Post subject: Peter Beamont's Lessons in Civility and Honest Engagement Reply with quote

Exchange with Media Lens Reader Gary in 2006

From: "Garry" [garry@hotmail.com]
Sent: 13/02/2006 13:25
To: peter.beaumont@observer.co.uk
Subject: How the British Army's capture of hearts and minds turned sour

Dear Peter Beaumont,

Regarding your statement [1] in your Observer article, that British and
American troops were sent to Iraq to liberate the Iraqis, I would like to
remind you that British and American troops were in fact sent to find and
destroy weapons of mass destruction and disarm Saddam Hussein who we were told was a threat to world peace.[2],[3]

"Liberation" of the Iraqi people equates to regime change - clearly a case of the crime of aggression - the supreme war crime.

In the Downing Street memo of July 23 2002 the attorney general Lord Goldsmith warned that under international law, the desire for regime change was not a legal base for military action.

Regards,

Garry.

[1] "...What is particularly disturbing the level of dehumanisation of the
Iraqi people that British and American troops were sent to liberate."

[2] "So where are they? In case we forget, distracted by the thought of
thousands of dead Iraqi civilians, looted museums and gathering political
chaos, the proclaimed purpose of this war, vainly pursued by Britain and
the US through the United Nations, was to disarm Saddam Hussein and to destroy weapons of mass destruction deemed a menace to the entire world." ('So where are they, Mr Blair?’, leader, Independent on Sunday, April 20, 2003)

[3]Andreas Whittam Smith’s May 2003 comments in the Independent:

“There was no ambiguity about the reasons for fighting. The only text which matters is the motion the Prime Minister put down in the House of Commons on 18 March, just before hostilities began. It asked members of Parliament to support the decision of Her Majesty's Government ‘that the United Kingdom should use all means necessary to ensure the disarmament of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction‘.

“There was nothing else in the motion other than citations of various United Nations Security Council resolutions. Regime change was not a British war aim.” (Whittam Smith, ‘If the weapons are not found, Blair must quit,’ The Independent, May 19, 2003)

REPLY FROM BEAUMONT

From: peter.beaumont@observer.co.uk
To: "Garry"
Subject: Re: How the British Army's capture of hearts and minds turned sour
Date: Mon, 13 Feb 2006 13:34:24 +0000

Since a) no one seemed to give a shit about the legality and b) since I know that TB regarded it as an issue of liberation and c) there never was any wmd I stick to my staement

GARY REPLIES

From: "Garry" [garry@hotmail.com]
Sent: 13/02/2006 18:03
To: peter.beaumont@observer.co.uk
Subject: Re: How the British Army's capture of hearts and minds turned sour

Dear Peter Beaumont,

Thank you for your reply. I have taken up some of the issues raised below.

"Since a) no one seemed to give a shit about the legality and b) since I
know that TB regarded it as an issue of liberation and c) there never was
any wmd I stick to my statement"

a) no one seemed to give a shit about the legality.

According to a University of Maryland (PIPA) study into public opinion
released at the end of 2004, 61% of Bush voters said that “they assumed
that Bush would not have gone to war if Baghdad did not have WMD and was not providing support to Al Qaeda”, as journalist Jim Lobe put it.[1]

We may safely presume that the legality of the invasion was of major concern to these people.

You will note that this only refers to Bush supporters, those one would say
most likely to support the venture. No need to labour the implications for
the rest of world opinion then.

b) since I know that TB regarded it as an issue of liberation

Presumably you base this on the fact that Blair implied or stated it was an
issue of liberation for him – and you were, and remain convinced? Despite
all that has come to light of duplicity and manipulations on the part of
his administration, you hold firm to the liberation theory? Blair never had any ulterior motives for backing the US?

c) there never was any wmd I stick to my statement

I’m afraid this one is too cryptic for me. Perhaps you could give some
more detail…

Regards,

Garry.

[1] http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/FJ23Ak01.html
“…Remarkably, asked whether the U.S. should have gone to war with Iraq if U.S. intelligence had concluded that Baghdad did not have a WMD program and was not providing support to al Qaeda, 58 percent of Bush supporters said no, and 61 percent said they assumed that Bush would also not have gone to war under those circumstances.

“To support the president and to accept that he took the U.S. to war based
on mistaken assumptions,” said Kull, “likely creates substantial cognitive
dissonance and leads Bush supporters to suppress awareness of unsettling
information about pre-war Iraq.”

Kull added that this “cognitive dissonance” could also help explain other
remarkable findings in the survey, particularly with respect to Bush
supporters’ misperceptions about the president’s own positions…”


BEAUMONT REPLIES

From: peter.beaumont@observer.co.uk
To: "Garry"
Subject: Re: How the British Army's capture of hearts and minds turned sour
Date: Mon, 13 Feb 2006 18:14:05 +0000

I'm talkin about the people who took us to war not people like u and me who opposed it so stop wasting my time and piss off now like a good boy to your chomsky

GARY REPLIES

Dear Peter Beaumont,

You don't seem prepared to engage seriously. I notice that you evade the
simple question I specifically put to you as to whether you actually
believed Blair's "liberation" justification...Any particular reason for
this?

Garry.

REPLY FROM BEAUMONT


No I'm not. So kindly #### off
Sun Sep 02, 2012 5:34 am
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