Skip to comments.Short: Why I will not quit
Posted on 03/18/2003 5:11:42 AM PST by MadIvan
Clare Short today told why she had decided to stay in the Cabinet in spite of her deep misgivings about war on Iraq.
The International Development Secretary, who last week accused Tony Blair of pursuing a "reckless" policy in support of President Bush, had been widely expected to follow Robin Cook out of government.
But the woman regarded as the moral conscience of the Cabinet performed a U-turn today. She promised to back the Government in a vote tonight on military action, admitting: "I know I will be heavily criticised for my decision . . . but I am doing what I think is right.
"I remain very critical of the way the Iraq crisis has been handled . . . but we are where we are and we must decide how we can best take things forward from here."
Her change of heart came because she had been convinced that the war would be lawful and she was satisfied the rebuilding of Iraq would only go ahead with a UN mandate rather than under the control of a US occupying army.
She continued: "There have been a number of important developments over the last week.
"Firstly, the Attorney General has made clear that military action would be legal under international law. Other lawyers have expressed contrary opinions but for the UK Government, the Civil Service and the military, it is the view of the Attorney General that matters and this is unequivocal.
"Second, the Prime Minister has persuaded President Bush that there must be a UN resolution on creating a UN mandate for the reconstruction of Iraq. This is crucial. Without it, coalition forces would have been an occupying army under international law.
"They would have had no legal right to rebuild any Iraqi institutions. The UN, as in Afghanistan, will now have the authority to support the people of Iraq in drawing up a legitimate constitution, building new institutions and holding elections.
"The UN mandate is also essential for the engagement of the international development community in the provision of humanitarian aid, and for the engagement of the World Bank, IMF, Asian Development Bank and others in the reconstruction effort."
The "moral conscience" of the Cabinet apparently does not have the courage of her convictions, nor can her word be trusted when she can turn 180 degrees overnight, convieniently in continuation of her political career.
I'm taking that Cook thought she would join the walk out huh?
Have there been any comments from Cook yet about Clare not resigning?
Ministers are like "Secretaries" to you - the Minister for Foreign Affairs is equivalent to your Secretary of State. Same goes for Transportation, etc.
Clare Short has a role as head of International Development; think of whoever is in charge of giving out money to foreigners for you and that's the equivalent.
Now, as to how this helps Blair - Clare Short is the darling of the far left. Some on the far left will vote no to war, no matter what. But, those who admire her will be moved to vote for Blair this evening - thus the far left vote is split, Blair has his party on side, the Tories on side, and it is likely the majority will be huge.
This has been my summary argument for all leftist Bush-haters when they tell me it's just about oil, there's no evidence, etc....
When they admit that Blair and Bush are risking sooo much politically on this, I just ask them, "If Bush wants to be re-elected, and Blair is risking no-confidence, WHY IN THE WORLD would they risk this war, UNLESS they really have serious evidence????"
THAT is something they can never figger out!! It does not compute in their world, and they get stumped, because they cannot grasp a president doing something risky just because it's the right thing to do!
That little fat dumpling has been awful quiet recently, ain't he???
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