I wrote this late last night. I've decided to share it after all.
February 15, 2003.
I remember that day so well. I marched. We all marched. We marched as one, from Glasgow Green to the SECC. It seemed like the whole of Glasgow, the whole of Britain - God, the entire world - was marching. I even managed to get my old dear out marching. We talked to each other. We laughed as we saw the banners - "BLIAR", "WEAPONS OF MASS DECEPTION", and the huge mannequin of George W Bush with the words "FUCKING COWBOY" emblazoned on it. Free from the apathy of the living room, liberated from the matter-of-fact-ness of the radio and the safe, controlled detachment of the television screen, we were, all of us, vindicated by each other. We had all been moved to come together here, and we were all bolstered by one another's passion.
John Swinney spoke, Tommy Sheridan spoke, many others spoke. Tommy Sheridan said that the Glesga Polis couldnae count, which drew a big laugh, as I recall. I certainly laughed. The Police had estimated that there were far less of us than there actually were. It felt like there were millions of us. And, of course, there were - all throughout Britain, London, Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester... the whole of Britain united as one to screech out the words:
"NOT IN OUR NAME".
It was the biggest political demonstration in British history. And it achieved almost nothing, save for certifying our beliefs, and cementing for all the world to see our absolute repudiation of what was about to happen. Not that that would rejoin the dismembered limbs, or resurrect the corpses littering the streets and farms, of course. But at least it meant something.
Tony Blair was scheduled to appear at the SECC that day, to address the Labour Party conference at the very culmination of our march, the very time our demonstration was to arrive outside. Blair's speech was hastily brought forward at the last minute to ensure that he would be long gone by the time we got there. He showed just how much he truly cared about democracy that day. How much he cared about genuine opposition. How much he cared about saving hundreds of thousands of people from violent death, and a tinderbox region of our planet from the ignition that is turning into an inferno even as I type this, even as you read it.
I don't care what John Chilcot says today. I couldn't care less. This isn't a history book. I don't need sources and I don't need corroboration. I was alive. I saw it. I heard it. I lived through it. I remember the lies and the propaganda, the dross that was plastered all over the newspapers about weapons so fast and so powerful that they could destroy me in three quarters of an hour's time. I remember the dodgy dossier. I remember the death of David Kelly. I remember Alastair Campbell's face, skewed and twisted with self-righteous, meaningless fury. And I remember what Tony Blair did. I don't need anyone to tell me the truth about what I already know.
Tony Blair is a war criminal. If all the judges and jurors throughout the planet declared otherwise, I would still gainsay them, because I was there, I remember, and I know exactly what he is. The fact that this man is allowed his liberty, never mind the obscene wealth and protection - paid for by the public - that he is permitted to enjoy, is a monstrous insult against every single decent, just and beautiful thing in this world. He is a monster, a traitor, a dissembler, a deceiver, and a war criminal.
If you ever chance to read this, Blair, know that you are hated. Know that you are despised, held in the lowest contempt, by many, many more people than you realise. Tens of millions of people died in two global wars to get the United Nations established, so it could help end the monstrous power games that took both our species and our planet to the very brink of extinction, and in the year 2003, you unzipped the fly on your bespoke suit and urinated on every single one of their graves. History will condemn you more than I ever could.
I detest you. I revile you. I hate you. But I don't want you dead; unlike you, I am not a murderer. But if karma ever does catch up with you, and your own precious lifeblood is spilled by someone else, whether it be victim or vengeful assassin, you can rest assured of one thing, Blair.
It is "NOT IN MY NAME."