As Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced the withdrawal of British troops from Iraq Luton South Liberal Democrat Prospective Parliamentary Candidate, Councillor Qurban Hussain, called for a full, wide ranging and independent inquiry into the war.
Speaking on Wednesday evening (17th December 2008) at a gathering of Luton Liberal Democrat supporters he said:
“In February 2003, the Liberal Democrats joined hundreds of thousands of British protesters on a march against the invasion of Iraq. But inside the House of Commons the Labour government, with the Conservative party cheering them on, voted in favour of the invasion. Only the Liberal Democrats, and a handful of Labour and Tory rebels, voted against the war.”
“Few could have predicted the absolute chaos into which Iraq would fall. Few could have believed the negligent lack of post-war planning by the Bush administration. The war killed thousands of soldiers and civilians, gave a foothold to terrorists, emboldened Iran, scattered millions of refugees around the region, overstretched British Armed Forces, and undermined security on the streets of Britain.”
“The withdrawal will be particularly welcome for the British forces and their families. The British people must never forget the sacrifice, commitment and professionalism of our Armed Forces.”
“But the human suffering, financial cost and political ramifications in the Middle East and beyond will continue to reverberate. Indeed, at this time of acute financial crisis and economic recession, Liberal Democrats remind Gordon Brown that he signed off every cheque for this disastrous war which has cost the British taxpayer a staggering £4m a day.”
“It is vital that Gordon Brown announces an inquiry into the Iraq war. But the inquiry must be fully independent and given a wide-ranging remit. There can be no more blows to public trust in politics. Another whitewash is not an option.”