Tutu: Blair, Bush should face Iraq charges

Sept. 2, 2012 at 10:39 AM   |   Comments

LONDON, Sept. 2 (UPI) -- Archbishop Desmond Tutu told a newspaper ex-British Prime Minister Tony Blair and ex-U.S. President George W. Bush should be prosecuted for the Iraq invasion.

The Nobel Peace Prize laureate said in the British newspaper The Observer Sunday the 2003 invasion was based on the false premise that Iraq had an arsenal of weapons of mass destruction, and resulted in widespread devastation and destabilization of the entire region.

"The then leaders of the United States and Great Britain fabricated the grounds to behave like playground bullies and drive us further apart," Tutu wrote in an op-ed piece. "They have driven us to the edge of a precipice where we now stand – with the specter of Syria and Iran before us"

Tutu said he favored seeing Bush and Blair hauled before the international criminal court in The Hague, which was established for trials on charges such as genocide and crimes against humanity. Tutu told the newspaper that while the death toll in Iraq alone justified such charges, the invasion also set the stage for the current bloody rebellion in Syria and pushed Iran into a nuclear mode.

"The question is not whether Saddam Hussein was good or bad or how many of his people he massacred," Tutu wrote. "The point is that Mr. Bush and Mr. Blair should not have allowed themselves to stoop to his immoral level."

Tutu also said his conclusions led him to cancel an appearance at a speaking event South Africa last week at which Blair was also scheduled to appear.

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