Thursday, 7 July 2016

Ann Clwyd should admit she was wrong in her support for Iraq invasion.

One od the most appalling sights on yesterdays commons  debate over Chilcott was of Ann  Clwyd  MP for Cynon Valley,  who voted for the war 
defending  the decision 
Ms lwyd,d was special envoy on human rights in Iraq from 2003 until 2010, said that Saddam Hussein slaughtered his own people and was in breach of a string of UN revolutionises
: "Saddam Hussein in 1988 already had killed a half a million of his own people. He went on to kill more and more - the Shia in the south, the Kurds in the north, the Marsh Arabs in the south.
"And if you stood by the mass graves where 10,000 Iraqi bodies lie, still many of them undiscovered - those of us who had campaigned for human rights over many years in Iraq, and I over 30 years, were very well aware of the torture and the horrors happening in that country.
"And I wish people would ask Iraqis what they think of the invasion, because many Iraqis are grateful that we took the action we did that time."
"The horrors of Saddam Hussein and what he did to his own people...were clearly documented and I think we were right to take part in that invasion."


Ms Clwyd rightly was a long opponent pf Sadam Hussein Human rights  record but that has led her to mislead the public herself. 


On 12 March 2003, James Mahon made first mention of the claims that some Iraqis were killed in plastic shredders or wooden chippers,when he addressed the House of Commons after returning from research in northern Iraq. Six days later, Clwyd wrote an article in The Times entitled "See men shredded, then say you don't back war," saying that an unnamed Iraqi had said that Saddam and Qusay Hussein fed opponents of their Baathist rule into a plastic shredder or wood chipper, and then used their shredded bodies as fish food.

Later she would add that it was believed to be housed in Abu Ghraib prison, and spoke with an unidentified person who claimed the American-sourced shredders were dismantled "just before the military got there". As the first journalist to state the unsubstantiated claim, the rolling effect of the gruesome verbal picture garnered wider media and international political support, including from Australian Prime Minister John Howard, for an invasion of Iraq. 


This claim has not been substantiated  and most observers believe it was made up by Hussein opponents

The Sun's political editor Trevor Kavanagh wrote in February 2004 that as a result of Clwyd's article 


"Public opinion swung behind Tony Blair, as voters learned how Saddam fed dissidents feet first into industrial shredders."
 Brendan O'Neill was the first Western journalist to seriously challenge the existence of the shredder, in reports for The Spectator and The Guardian in February 2004. He asked Clwyd and Mahon to provide evidence or the names of the Iraqis who gave them the story.[7][8] He spoke with the doctor who dealt with executed prisoners at Abu Ghraib during Saddam Hussein's rule, who said that all executions were performed by hanging, and denied claims that there was a shredder of any type.
Did he ever attend to, or hear of, prisoners who had been shredded? "No." Did any of the other doctors at Abu Ghraib speak of a shredding machine used to execute prisoners? "No, no, never."
Clwyd responded to O'Neill's allegations in The Guardian later the same month, stating:
Brendan O'Neill was told by my office, but chose not to include in his article, the following information. In his statement, the witness who said that people were killed by the shredder was very specific: he named individuals who he said were killed in the shredder and the individuals who he said supervised the execution by shredder; he stated where the shredder was located and the month and year when the executions took place. The witness was closely questioned by Indict researchers and was described by them as being "unshakeable". He said he is also prepared to testify in court about the incident.[9]
Brendan O’Neill wrote a letter in response to Clwyd’s, claiming that her office had actually refused to give him the information he asked for:
Over the phone, a member of Clwyd's staff read to me, at breakneck speed, a pre-prepared statement about the witness. She said I could not ask any questions about the statement, that it would not be faxed or emailed to me, and that none of the witness's specific information would be made available to me. When I phoned Clwyd to make further inquiries, she hung up.[
No further evidence for the existence of the shredder has ever been published, though a witness at Saddam's trial in December 2005 claimed to have seen it. Saddam's half-brother, Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti, verbally attacked the witness, shouting he "should act in the cinema."[11] O'Neill returned to the topic in February 2010, writing "Neither Amnesty International nor Human Rights Watch, in their numerous investigations into human rights abuses in Iraq, had ever heard anyone talk of a human-shredding machine."[

As MsClwyd  had been vocal and prominent in her concern for the situation in Iraq before the war, Tony Blair made her a Special Envoy on Human Rights in Iraq in the run-up to the war in order to give justification for the invasion thought this was nit the legal pretext,


Since the invasion  Ms Clwyd has been constantly telling us that the Green Roots of democracy have been springing up  all over the Middle  East as the actual evidence has shown Iraq to be involved in a civil war and Human rights abuses and deaths higher than Hussein  a pattern hat has been replicated throughout the Middle East.

It is important to remember that the reason  given why we invade Iraq was not about Human rights abused but the Hussein had weapons of mass destruction .

But Ann Clwyd  claims helped to swing public opinion behind the invasion,

How ever can she claim it was the right thing to do considering the disastrous fall out from   the Invasion that has left a legacy of feat and destruction that will last for generations,

1 comment:

  1. Ann Clwyd is still in denial regarding her role in helping to destabilise the Middle East.

    She thinks repeating the same tired old reasons for Blair's illegal invasion of Iraq will somehow justify her actions in supporting the war.

    Whilst Saddam's human rights record was appalling, he wasn't and will not be the last dictator to behave with such cruelty towards his own people.

    How many more hundreds of innocent people will die violently in Iraq before she admits she was wrong.



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