Tony Blair had me going there for a little while.
I thought the former British prime minister actually was going to say he was sorry for joining the parade into war with Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.
Then he backed away.
Blair tempered his apology by saying it was not a mistake to get rid of Saddam, but then said he regrets following the faulty intelligence that persuaded his country and the United States that Saddam possessed weapons of mass destruction.
You know how it turned out. We invaded Iraq, tossed Saddam out, captured him, tried him, hanged him … all the while scouring Iraq for those WMD.
They weren’t there.
Am I glad Saddam Hussein is gone? Of course I am! The price we paid in thousands of American lives lost, however, was too great.
Blair’s almost-apology, though, does go a lot farther than President Bush, Vice President Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld ever have done — or likely ever will do.
If only the U.S. brass would acknowledge the mistake. If only it acknowledge the war’s impact on the enabling of the Islamic State, the Sunni militant group that is waging war against the Shia government in Iraq.
That won’t happen. Instead, we hear from Cheney (mostly) about how they were right and how others, namely the Obama administration, have squandered all the progress we made in Iraq.
Well, the Iraq War was a war of choice.
Saddam Hussein was being contained within Iraq. He posed barely a fraction of the threat that he was said to pose.
And, oh yes. Let’s not forget that Saddam Hussein and his Baath party had nothing — zero — to do with the 9/11 attacks, which was another pretext that the Bush administration used to justify our invasion of Iraq in March 2003.
I don’t expect an apology from the Bush administration. I was hoping one might be forthcoming from our allies across The Pond.
It came. Sort of …