‘Save the Children’—You can leave that to Tony Blair

Whoever thought that we would have reached the limits of absurdity when Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize right after taking office, and the European Union received the award as well, will be surprised to learn that the charity, Save the Children, has awarded the ‘Global Legacy Award’ to Tony Blair. Today 200 collaborators of Save the Children have sent a letter of protest explaining that this gesture completely destroys the organisation’s credibility.

Blair jointly with Bush in 2003 kicked the Middle East into chaos by invading Iraq, and occupy the country after a brief war against the depleted army of Saddam Hussein. In spite of the largest demonstrations in history in February 2003, opposition in the UN by France, Germany, Russia, Belgium and a range of other countries, these two opted for an unprovoked war of aggression, the paramount crime in international law because the others ( to wit, war crimes and crimes against humanity) are implicit in it. 

He who starts a war knows that the other crimes will follow.

With the support of Aznar of Spain, Berlusconi of Italy and Balkenende in the Netherlands, Blair and Bush set the Middle East on fire and it has been burning ever since.

Hundreds of thousands have meanwhile met their death, millions of lives have been destroyed. What this means for the children—who already were victimised in large numbers by the sanctions imposed on Iraq under British and US pressure—well, would it really be necessary to explain this to anyone?

In Nuremberg the Nazi leaders caught alive were condemned to death. Not, as many assume, on account of the crimes they committed during the war, but because of their role in unleashing an unprovoked war of aggression.

Not our illustrious duo though. Bush has chosen to withdraw from the public arena and begun painting, but Blair has gone into business. So for him it is not the gallows, but a life in the limelight. Right after he stepped down as prime minister in 2007 he became a special envoy of the Quartet (the UN, the US, the EU and Russia), a body entrusted with keeping alive the ‘peace process’ between Israel and the Palestinians. The most one-sided supporter of Israel thus was selected to take on this task.

In addition he became an advisor to the large investment bank, JP Morgan, the insurance company, Zurich, and other corporations. The Daily Telegraph today gave an overview of his revenues, which are being estimated at around 20 millions pounds a year. Six residences, among them an estate in Buckinghamshire and several in London, for himself and his children, are testimony that the business of the socialist ex-prime minister is up and running.

Tony Blair Associates, a consultancy that he directs, has multi-million contracts with the powers that be in countries like Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates and Colombia to advise how to hold on to power—even if that has resulted, as in Kazakhstan, to bloody riots followed by repression. Tony knows how to sell that to the outside world!

The International Criminal Court, which had hauled one African politician after another to The Hague, has apparently not yet been able to track down Blair’s address from the six potential homes (the US does not recognise the Court’s jurisdiction, so Bush can continue painting).

So this man has now been given a prestigious award by Save the Children. It is the world upside down. Of course it all becomes a bit more understandable once we know that the boss of the British branch of Save the Children, Justin Forsyth, was a special adviser to Blair for three years, and that Jonathan Powell, Blair’s chief of staff, has a seat on the board.

That the prize was awarded by the American branch is not important. What counts is that war, starting a war, since 1991 has become an important career move for a Western politician. On the very day that Obama dismissed his secretary of defence, Chuck Hagel, because as our newspaper writes, Hagel was not sufficiently enthusiastic for war, this reminds us of the unrestrained belligerency of the West.

Whether it concerns the Middle East, Ukraine, or Africa, nothing appears to hold back our politicians to unleash untrammeled violence against anyone who dares not to take orders from us.

And once you have made your victims, and left the country affected behind in chaos—then it’s time to put on your dinner jacket for the ceremony at Save the Children!

Kees van der Pijl

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