A Friend's Folly

Abby Zimet

Citing the need to learn "the hard lessons," 30 leading Australian politicians and former defence chiefs are demanding an independent investigation into their country's participation, with 2,000 troops, in the US-led invasion of Iraq. In a foreword to the statement, "Why did we go to war in Iraq? A call for an Australian inquiry," they write that an inquiry would "strengthen the governmental structures against precipitous or ill-considered actions in future" - something that this country, inexplicably, has failed to do.

"In retrospect what we now see were frantic efforts to create the prerequisites by manipulating intelligence assessments to fit the case, with all the sophistication that task required."

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