10 May 2007: for immediate release
The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament today responded to the imminent resignation of Tony Blair by condemning the tragic failures of his premiership – his legacy of war and nuclear re-armament and his support for the location of US missile defence bases in Britain.
In a speech during the 1997 General Election campaign Blair said “Century upon century it has been the destiny of Britain to lead other nations. That should not be a destiny that is part of our history. It should be part of our future. We are a leader of nations or nothing.”
Blair has clearly sought to follow through on this sentiment, but instead of seeking a more peaceful world free from the threat of nuclear weapons, the leadership that Blair has shown has been the disastrous invasion of Iraq and the undermining of international structures through the concept of ‘pre-emptive war’.
Kate Hudson, Chair of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, commented: “Many people were genuinely enthused by the promise of an ‘ethical foreign policy’ but the reality has been that Tony Blair has taken this country into numerous wars, costing hundreds of thousands of lives, and with the renewal of Trident, threatens literally hundreds of millions more”.
Continuing she said: “The last ten years presented a real opportunity for breaking with the destructive policies of the past – basing our security on strong multinational institutions rather than on nuclear threats. But Blair has sealed his place in history by a headlong rush in the opposite direction – a first-use nuclear policy, engaging in illegal wars and embarking on nuclear rearmament. It is totally clear that the timing of the Trident decision was based mostly around Blair’s urge to see these awful weapons as part of his legacy. We’re glad he’ll soon no longer be in a position to make such disastrous decisions. The majority of the British people want foreign policies based on peace and justice. That is what we are looking for in our next Prime Minister.”
Notes to Editors:
1. CND is supporting the symbolic protest called by the Stop the War Coalition taking place at Downing Street between 3:30 and 5pm today. For further details call Andrew Burgin on 07939 242229 or Chris Nineham on 07930 536 519
2. The wars referred to include the ‘Desert Fox’ operation against Iraq, and those against Yugoslavia, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan and Iraq, more than any other Prime Minister in living memory
3. The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) is one of Europe’s biggest single-issue peace campaigns, with over 35,000 members in the UK. CND campaigns for the abolition of all nuclear weapons everywhere.
4. For further information and interviews please contact Ben Soffa, CND’s Press & Communications Officer, on 0207 7002350 or 07968 420859