Friday, July 08, 2005

And Afghanistan

From the anonymous commenter on "Democratic Underground" ...

These attacks were clearly the result of Blair's willingness to take part in Bush's war in Iraq. What happened in Madrid last year has happened again in London today. I hope people in Britain take the opportunity to bring pressure to Blair's government and bring their troops home from Iraq. If he does not, then Labour should make an effort to remove him from 10 Downing Street.

... to historian Max Hastings, writing in Friday's Daily Mail ...

We must acknowledge that by supporting President Bush's extravagances in his ill-named War on Terror and ill-justified invasion of Iraq, Blair has insured that we are in the frontline beside the U.S., whether we like it or not.

... and even Reuters:

Investigators were examining a claim of responsibility from the "Secret Group of al Qaeda's Jihad in Europe" which said the blasts were punishment for Britain's involvement in Iraq.

History is being re-written in the first draft. Though some on the right are so used to Reuters doing that it won't even raise an eyebrow.

The basis for all this is the statement by al Qaida in Europe, which may or may not hold up as authentic, but at the moment is the only explanation of the attacks given credence as being from the attackers.

Maddeningly, I still can't find the full text online in any language but Arabic (which I do not read). What kind of news media can't give us a simple text file of such an important document?

But here's one part that has been translated:

"It is time of revenge against the crusader and Zionist British government has come in response to the massacres committed by Iraq and Afghanistan."

Emphasis added. Even if there never had been an Iraq invasion, even if Saddam was still merrily gassing Kurds and beheading Shi'ites and his two grisly sons were raping women off the streets, we'd be where we are today.

Now, at least the George Galloways, who opposed the Afghanistan invasion, too, can swell with righteous indignation over what Blair and Bush "did" to London Thursday. But how about the 90 percent or so of Democrats and liberal voices in America and Britain who have been telling us Afghanistan was a different case than Iraq, and that invasion was supportable and supported on their side?

Well, the only way to shift a share of blame to Bush and Blair is to ignore those two inconvenient words in the al Qaida statement. So, no prize for predicting many would do just that.