U.K. minister charges terror war a smokescreen

A former member of the British government has created an uproar in both the U.S. and U.K. by making some sensational charges.

Michael Meacher, who was a minister until three months ago, spoke his piece in an article in the British daily, The Guardian.

Meacher said the Iraq war is the result of U.S. desire to control the Persian Gulf and the world. Meacher, a left-wing politician, further claimed in his article that the war on terrorism is nothing but a smokescreen and that the U.S. knew in advance of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. He claims the American government chose for strategic reasons not to act on the warnings.

Meacher said the U.S. goal is “world hegemony, built around securing by force command over the oil supplies” and that Pax Americana (American peace) “provides a much better explanation of what actually happened before, during and after 9-11 than the global war on terrorism thesis.”

He added the U.S. has made “no serious attempt” to catch al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.

Meacher also is critical of the British government, claiming it is motivated by a desire for oil.

The former minister’s accusations drew outrage and anger from the American government. A U.S. embassy spokesman in London said: “Mr. Meacher’s fantastic allegations—especially his assertion that the U.S. government knowingly stood by while terrorists killed some 3,000 innocents in New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia—would be monstrous, and monstrously offensive, if they came from someone serious or credible.

“My nation remains grateful for the steadfast friendship of the British people and Her Majesty’s government as we face, together, the serious challenges that have arisen since Sept. 11, 2001.”

10 Downing Street also pulled away from Meacher’s views. “The prime minister has responded to those who argue it was about oil,” a spokesman for Tony Blair said.

The second anniversary of the attacks of 9-11 fell last Thursday, and Americans and the world still have no thorough and accurate explanation of those events or what was behind them.

Other former ministers have criticized the Blair government for misleading the British public over the reasons for invading Iraq. None has gone as far as Meacher.

The former environment minister said the plans of the neo-conservatives in Washington for action against Afghanistan and Iraq were drafted well before Sept. 11.

Meacher asks why the U.S. did not heed intelligence about al-Qaeda agents in the U.S. and the slow reaction of American authorities on the day of the attacks, as well as the later inability to capture bin Laden.

“From this,” he said, “ it seems that the so-called war on terrorism is being used largely as bogus cover for achieving U.S. strategic geopolitical objectives.

“Given this, it is not surprising that some have seen the U.S. failure to avert the 9-11 attacks as creating an invaluable pretext for attacking Afghanistan, in a war that had clearly already been well planned in advance.”

Meacher added: “The overriding motivation for this political smokescreen is that the U.S. and the U.K. are beginning to run out of secure hydrocarbon energy supplies.”

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