Britain’s Chilcot Iraq War Report Set for Release

Britain and the world await a highly controversial report on UK’s involvement and justification for the invasion of Iraq.

Britain’s Chilcot Iraq War Report Set for Release

Britain and the world await a highly controversial report on UK’s involvement and justification for the invasion of Iraq. The inquiry and subsequent report, led by former civil servant John Chilcot, began seven years ago after public criticism of the war peaked. The primary gist of the inquiry analyzes Tony Blair’s argument and justification for the war. The invasion of Iraq was met with strong criticism across the globe, even in the US and Britain, the two countries who initiated the war. Even before the invasion began, citizens and journalist alike had been criticizing both the war itself and the arguments being laid out by the governments of Britain and the US.

The decision to launch the inquiry began in 2009 when the ruling Labour Party attempted to address public outrage against the war. At the time of the invasion, both British Prime Minister Tony Blair and US President George W. Bush joined to create the case for war. The centerpiece of the two leader’s arguments was the claim the Iraq had weapons of massive destruction, a claim which was later proven to be false. Even when these allegations were first made, many in the public were skeptical of the evidence provided, and mass distrust of the government spread throughout the US and Britain. The 2-million-word report, now dubbed the Chilcot inquiry, is the official response to this public outrage and distrust.

The report looked at over 150,000 government documents, including memos and conversations between Tony Blair and George W. Bush. However, the report will not recommend or support civil or criminal accusations. Rather, it seeks to uncover the integrity of the claims made by Tony Blair, the exact reasons that led to Britain joining the war and the consequences of the war. Iraq today is still in ruin from the war, despite assurances by the US and the UK to rebuild the country after the invasion. Currently, vast sections of Iraq are controlled by the extremist group ISIS and violence and terrorism still grip the country.

Tony Blair, who was interviewed in a public hearing in 2011 for the inquiry, has rejected any claims of dishonesty or misleading the public before and during the invasion of Iraq. He, as Bush also claims, believed sincerely that Iraq was in violation of UN treaties banning certain weapons. Still, public distrust of Blair’s claims continue. Chilcot said the inquiry would not be a witch-hunt nor is it a government report. He claims the investigation and report are a rational and impartial investigation into the dealings of the government, specifically the Prime Minister, before and during the invasion of Iraq.

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