Until recently Tony Blair was a sort of forgotten figure of British politics. After shepherding New Labour to victory in the 90s then crashing out of the top office to be replaced with a walking ham/charisma void in 2007, Blair (now 68) would only really ever pop up to offer unwelcome opinions on occasional happenings like Brexit or the Covid Pandemic. Sort of like that uncle you’ve forgotten exists until you see him posting on Facebook about how the recent reduction in gravy in the Gregg’s stake bake is further proof that the country is going down the pan.
Which brings us to Blair’s recent re-emergence as (whisper it) Sir Tony Blair. Or, Sir Anthony Charles Lynton Blair KG to give him his official title. Of course, following the War in Iraq, many have given Blair another title, one that goes a bit like W*r Cr*min*l. Which makes the awarding of his knighthood all the more confusing.
At the time of writing a petition urging the government to rescind his knighthood is closing in on one million signatures, making it one of the most signed petitions on change.org. Meanwhile, the Independent reports that just 3 per cent of a sample of the British public surveyed strongly feel Blair should get the knighthood. Writing in The Guardian Simon Jenkins opines “‘Sir Tony Blair’? How cheaply knighthoods come in our broken honours system”. Even the Daily Express and Daily Mail don’t seem to be on Blair’s side, running stories mentioning ISIS and Robert Mugabe.
It’s tempting to write Blair off as the man who invaded Iraq and Afghanistan beginning, in the latter case, a near 20 year war that irreparably destabilised the Middle East and the lives of millions across the region and in the West. But let’s not be hasty. Before you do, let’s take a look what else Sir Tony has been up to since leaving office in 2007 and see if anything here warrants the Queen getting her sword out.
He’s under fire over links with Kazakstan’s former president Nazarbayev
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