Former Chief of Defence Intelligence supports
He was subjected to a vicious hounding
when he broke ranks and briefed Andrew Gilligan the reporter for BBC’s Radio
4’s Today programme, last year about his concerns over the way in which Downing
Street was, in his view, misusing intelligence.
treatment of a good man ended only with his suicide last year.
We are blessed in this country with a
splendid civil service, and the best military men and women in the world. They are
loyal to the Queen, their country and to all of us, as citizens.
Yet they have run up against a Government
which deals in spin and misinformation, and which is – to put it mildly
economical with the truth.
The concern among the intelligence
services at this Government’s unprecedented attempt to politicise intelligence-
manipulate what should have been utterly objective work to its own political
advantage- cannot be over-estimated
Why else would people of the utmost
integrity such as John Morrison and Dr Brian Jones now be prepared to break
ranks and risk huge penalties?
Why are they endangering their
reputations, jobs and pensions, as well as laying themselves open to trials or
It can only be because they know that the
case for war against Iraq – as part of a wider war against terrorism- was reinforced
by claims that weapons of mass destruction could be deployed within 45 minutes.
apparently against this country, its interests or its bases in Cyprus.
The intelligence analysts knew this
assertion to be wrong, or at best, seriously misleading, but they were expected
to remain silent. They were being
placed in an invidious and untenable position.
Ultimately, they felt they had no choice but to speak out.
most serious thing any Government can do to a nation is to take it to war on a
We should remember that it was the
Government- not those usually anonymous defence and intelligence specialists-
who had decided to put the secret and objective judgments of the Joint
Intelligence Committee into the public domain, to influence the mood in
Parliament and the country, and garner support for invasion and regime change.
Now we know just how misleading, and how
shamelessly spun, that Government campaign was – and its terrible consequences.
precious British soldiers have so far died in this adventure-62 if you count,
as I do, poor Dr Kelly- not to mention more than 10,000 Iraqi civilians who
lost their lives.
there is John Morrison who has lost his job, and who, like Dr Brian Jones, must
face seeing his reputation denigrated. As for the BBC, it has been decapitated.
Contrast that situation with what has
happened in America. There, the head of CIA has resigned, taking with him
at least one senior officer.
Here, however, John Scarlett, the chairman of the JIC, who
claimed ‘ownership’ of the now infamous ’45 minute claim’ dossier, and who was
criticised in the Butler Report, has actually been promoted by the Prime
Minister to head MI6.
Let’s but it frankly. Those who had
justified criticisms of the way intelligence was being spun, or who allowed
alarm bells to be rung, are dead or have lost their jobs and seen their
reputations questioned. Those who played the system have been rewarded.
The harsh truth is that the books simply
do not balance, and there is good reason to ask why.
The bottom line must be this:
the Government of a great and ancient democracy such as ours sells its citizens
a false bill of goods, how can it expect loyal and honourable public servants
not to break ranks, to speak out and reveal what is going on?
for one, applaud the courage of those who do.’
[Air Marshall Sir John Walker was Chief of Defence Intelligence and
Deputy Chairman of the Defence Intelligence Committee from 1991 to 1994-when he
* * *
altered and bolding used]
MoD - obtains
almost half the COST of the
Iraq War and
selling Army land - barracks-hospitals.July
Daniel Hannan - Forming an OPPOSITION
to the EU
WITH THE ONLY PARTY WITH A MANDATE
TO SET YOU
TO RECLAIM YOUR DEMOCRACY DON'T VOTE
FOR THE TRIPARTITE PARTIES IN WESTMINSTER
SMALL PARTIES THAT SPEAK THEIR MINDS
WITHOUT SPIN AND LIES.
Home Rule for
HOME RULE for
[All underlined words have a
THE QUESTION THAT THE VOTER MUST ANSWER
‘DO YOU WISH TO BE GOVERNED BY YOUR OWN PEOPLE, LAW AND CUSTOM OR BY
THE CORRUPT ,EXPENSIVE UNACCOUNTABLE AND ALIEN BUSYBODY BRUSSELS’
-SIMPLE IS IT NOT?