STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Smoking Gun Memo Changes Context of Middle East
By Daily Bell Staff - October 19, 2015

Smoking gun emails reveal Blair's 'deal in blood' with George Bush over Iraq war was forged a YEAR before the invasion had even started. Leaked White House memo shows former Prime Minister's support for war at summit with U.S. President in 2002. Bombshell document shows Blair preparing to act as spin doctor for Bush, who was told 'the UK will follow our lead.' Publicly, Blair still claimed to be looking for diplomatic solution – in direct contrast to email revelations. New light was shed on Bush-Blair relations by material disclosed by Hillary Clinton at the order of the U.S. courts. – Daily Mail

Dominant Social Theme: Public servants rarely lie.

Free-Market Analysis: So it is all coming out now … the deliberate, cold-blooded planning to create a war with Iraq no matter the consequences. The evidence is contained in communications from then US Secretary of State Colin Powell to President George W Bush.

Just released – apparently as part of a court-mandated data-dump of Hillary Clinton's emails – one memo notes that Blair "will be with us" if the US made war in the Middle East, and that Blair would follow the lead of Bush and the Pentagon.

In Britain, where the public turned against Tony Blair long ago, the revelations are complicating the endless dithering of the Chilcot inquiry that is supposed to clarify Britain's role in the Iraq war.

From this standpoint, the memo is indeed an important one. It seems to confirm suspicions that Blair himself was determined to bring Britain into the war and confirmed to Bush that he would do what was necessary to support US actions.

Even worse, according to the UK Telegraph, "The briefing also suggested the then British Prime Minister would effectively act as a front man for the arguments for war in return for being promoted on the international stage by America."

This is surely a charge of the gravest sort and something that should terrify Tony Blair. It accuses him of trading the blood of British soldiers for personal aggrandizement advanced by the power of the Bush administration.

The Iraq war was a disaster like so many of the US's post World War II conflicts. In addition to the deaths of countless civilians and thousands of soldiers, millions were poisoned by US depleted uranium weapons. There are places in Iraq where women were reportedly told by doctors not to have babies because the rate of birth defects was so high.

But just as tragic as the "collateral damage" was the deliberate destabilization of Iraq itself. Saddam Hussein was a bad man but also an asset of the CIA. The US was as responsible for Hussein as anyone was – and the removal of Hussein set up a power vacuum that still has not been filled.

Iraq was once an extremely civilized place, despite its problems, and not a war zone. Even under Hussein it was not nearly as bad as it is now. The question that the British public is asking is "why?" Why was the war necessary? And why did so many Brits have to die for such an undefined mission?

It is important to answer these questions because the war that began in Iraq has spread and become even more destructive. It set Libya ablaze – and that country has turned to a kind of smoldering ash in the wake of the fighting and the death of Muammar Gaddafi. And it's spread to Syria and has destroyed most of that country as well.

Now Russia is bombing "terrorists" that the US has supposedly been bombing for the past year. Russian officials are not impressed and have asked whether the US is really interested in disrupting Islamic terrorism in Syria. The implicit accusation is that the US is more interested in degrading Syria's infrastructure so as to put more pressure on the Assad regime. The heck with the terrorists.

The larger accusation, of course, is that the US does not want peace in the Middle East and is instead inciting more war and more bloodshed. There are numerous reasons why this might be the case. But even granting the US is merely being reactive, the situation is nonetheless getting worse and worse.

One friend of The Daily Bell has just voiced his concern over the degrading situation in a very public way. In a NewsMax article entitled "Mideast Turmoil Could Lead to War," Jim Rogers warned the "turmoil could … force a sea-change in today's investing landscape." Rogers's statements are part of an interview conducted by Midas Letter.

"The whole Middle East situation is unbelievable," he is quoted as saying. "I cannot think of many times in history where you have so much just pure, pure chaos by so many people … It's very worrisome what's happening."

Rogers points out that war is actually good for his favorite kind of investment, commodities. Nonetheless, he seems gravely worried that war can easily spread beyond the Middle East. He points out the following:

It is true that throughout history, war has been declared by politicians or bureaucrats have used war to distract people from other problems. I'm not sure that it's a conscious act, they sit down and say 'Ah, we've got a problem, so let's start a war,' or whether it just happens naturally, but in either case, there is no question at all that this is distracting a lot of us from the fact that the economy is not doing well.

Rogers says he has not been buying much gold, though a significant – wider – shooting war would change his mind. "I mean, if war breaks out, of course, a lot of people are going to flee into gold, and I'll be buying more gold at $1,500 or you pick the number, and happy to get it."

Given such a scenario, Rogers is surely right to suggest that people contemplate additional precious metals purchases. (Rogers, by the way, is positive about farmland at this point in the business cycle and the disruptions of war often make food and land more valuable.)

Is the West deliberately aggravating tensions in the Middle East with the idea of creating an ever-wider war? Such analysis might seem peculiar to some but much less peculiar now that we have these new Blair documents to consider.

After Thoughts

If the West is determined to create ever-larger conflagrations around the world and especially in the Middle East – for whatever reason – then savvy investors ought to take this into account as they rebalance and reinvest their portfolios toward year-end. It would seem this is what Rogers is suggesting.

Posted in STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
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