Blair and opposition debating the routes we should take in order to alleviate the suffering of the Iraq people, and from time to time, Iraq's neighbours.
Iraq has lots of oil. It should be (and was) a rich country. 60% of it's populace only survive because of UN aid. There are 1,000,000 refugees from Iraq (about 100,000 per year over the last 12 years?). No internal political opposition exists to Saddam's dictatorship, all such opposition has been killed, as have all civil opposition movements.
His people are living in suffering, oppression and fear, and since the first UN resolution asking him to disarm, in 1991, he has continued his oppression... Blair says that when people says "we should give him more time" that the Iraq people have suffered increasingly over 12 years, and that we have already failed the Iraq people.
What is the right course of action? Should we continue sanctions, which affect the people (as Saddam sells the oil) and keep up UN aid to his people, and allow their suffering to continue? War is always the last resort... but I believe we are at the time of last resort, and have been since Saddam kicked the inspectors out in 1998.
Every time he has had the opportunity, he has attacked his neighbours, since 1998, he has been building up WMD again. In the face of this, the continued oppression of his people, and his non-co-operation with 12 years of UN resolutions, we have already left it 3 years too late.
Many people are anti-war on principal... but if the suffering of innocents is what we want to avert, then Saddam and his regime must be removed. If the more potent argument is "the innocent must not suffer", then we should go to war. If the more potent argument is "our economy will suffer", then we shouldn't go to war. Which is more important, our economy, or the Iraq people? We have spent, through the UN, a vast amount of money already on humanitarian aid to the Iraqis, is there even an local economical case, selfish though it may be, for abstinence?
Allowing Saddam and his regime to continue is immoral and, if the last 12 years are anything to judge by, costly in terms of life and money for both the Iraq people and Western countries who contribute to their aid. Iraq should be a rich and prosperous country, with an economy based on oil. Instead, it's people are destitute and it has a dictatorship with an oppressive army based on oil.
Even if some merely want the oil, I would rather we have it than Saddam. If we want innocent people to stop suffering, then we have to deal with Saddam, and after 12 years of cat and mouse games, of defiance then minor concessions by Saddam, after his history of oppression of his people and aggression towards his neighbours, how can we call ourselves moral or justified in keeping on our blinders and refusing to acknowledge what must be done? War is the last resort... and the time is overdue for the last resort to be taken, anything less is moral weakness, short sightedness and frail minded incompetence.
This is overdue: WAR, NOW, is the overdue last resort, the only moral action.