Tony Blair hasn’t learned much from his catastrophic mission in the Middle East. One would think that after the decade long bloodbath in Iraq and an equally disastrous carnage in Afghanistan, he may have tempered his views on foreign interventions. But no, the most despised prime minister in British history is back at it again and beating the drums for more war in the Middle East. Speaking on the Today program on BBC Radio 4 today, Blair said:
“We have not intervened in Syria. The consequences are, in my view, terrible and will be a huge problem not just for the Middle East region but for us in the years to come…in my view it doesn’t invalidate the necessity to intervene. What you have got to compare is the fact and the consequences of intervention with the fact and the consequences of non-intervention.”
Obviously each situation is different – Syria is not Iraq, and Iraq is not Afghanistan – and there may be some valid arguments for some sort of intervention. But given Blair’s track record, should anyone really be listening to him?
Blair is a big believer in the power of free markets – the ruthless mechanism that sorts out the viable from the unviable. Good ideas win, and bad ones lose, so surely Blair can apply this logic to the world of policy? If you try intervention in the Middle East and it fails spectacularly, then it stands to reason that we shouldn’t (at least for another generation or two) do it again. No?
Sadly, Blair is the author of his own reality, and in that reality Iraq and Afghanistan were roaring successes, and free market capitalism works (even when it brought down the entire global economic system). Bad ideas aren’t actually bad ideas, they are good ideas!
So yeah, let’s go to Syria!
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.