September 10, 2015 at 10:38 pm #44768
TONY Blair and George W Bush are to blame for the rapid rise of Islamic State (IS) in Iraq, Barack Obama has said.
By Tom Batchelor
PUBLISHED: 12:15, Wed, Mar 18, 2015 | UPDATED: 06:46, Sat, Apr 25, 2015
The US president pointed the finger at the former British prime minister and his American counterpart for embarking on a bloody war in Iraq, which has cost the lives of hundreds of UK and US servicemen and women.
In some of his most candid remarks yet on the rise of IS, Mr Obama said the terror group, also known as Isis, was a direct outgrowth of al-Qaeda in Iraq that grew out of our invasion.
He added: It is an example of unintended consequences, which is why we should generally aim before we shoot.
IS has waged a murderous campaign across Syria and Iraq, claiming responsibility for a number of beheadings of Western hostages.
The group seeks to impose their twisted version of strict Islamic law and was recently linked with the extremist organisations Boko Haram, which is primarily based in Nigeria.
But Mr Obama, who was speaking to Vice News, went on to sound a more hopeful message, suggesting a broad coalition of Western and Middle Eastern forces could defeat the jihadist faction.
Weve got a 60 country coalition, we will slowly push back Isis out of Iraq – Im confident that will happen.
His comments echo remarks made by Labours John Prescott, who served as Mr Blairs deputy during the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Lord Prescott said radicalised teenagers travelling to the Middle East were the result of the former PM wanting to invade everywhere.
However, Mr Blair has been adamant in his denial of any responsibility for the rise of the group.
We have to liberate ourselves from the notion that we have caused this. We havent, he said last year.
Even if you had left Saddam in place in 2003, then when the Arab revolutions in 2011, you would have still had a major problem in Iraq.
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