July 10, 2005

Blair: less and less Churchillian as time goes on [Updated]

Posted in London, UK, War on Terror at 7:06 pm by billdawson

[editor’s note: this post was “pasted” in — it appeared originally at the old Dawson’s Danube site, which is archived here.]

Let us hope this kind of thinking is not foremost in his mind:

“I think this type of terrorism has very deep roots,” Blair said. “As well as dealing with the consequences of this — trying to protect ourselves as much as any civil society can — you have to try to pull it up by its roots,” he said.

That meant boosting understanding between people of difference religions, helping people in the Middle East see a path to democracy and easing the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, he said.

“Ultimately what we now know, if we didn’t before, is that where there is extremism, fanaticism or acute and appalling forms of poverty in one continent, the consequences no longer stay fixed in that continent, they spread to the rest of the world” said Blair.

[my emphasis]

[UPDATE: This post by Charles Johnson indicates that AP (which was the source of the article above) now says Blair didn’t say these things.  That could well be true; I noticed how they bit about the Middle East and Israel/Palestine was not in quotes.  But I can’t find the BBC radio interview.  And it certainly seems that Israeli and Palestinian newspapers (as reported by the BBC) think Blair said something like this.]

[UPDATE II: Here is an article which contains a link to the BBC 4 “Today” show interview.  I listened to it.  Indeed, he does not specifically mention the Israel/Palestine issue.  The closest he gets is talking about pulling terrorism up from its roots, which include “some of the critical issues in the Middle East” whcih need to be “dealt with and sorted out.”  Overall, he does not sound very wishy-washy and I’m not so disappointed.]

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