Monday, July 14, 2003

Fraser: PM's department must have known Iraq evidence was false: "Mr Fraser said if anyone in the prime minister's department knew the evidence had been discredited, they had an obligation to pass the information on to Mr Howard. "If somebody was alerted and thought it better to let it lie, they should be sacked," Mr Fraser told the John Laws radio program. "The real question is how is it conceivable that in an allegedly efficient democratic system, this critical bit of information doesn't get to the prime minister, when I would believe his department also had to know... Mr Fraser said in the modern public service, it was possible public servants were too scared to pass on information their ministers might not want to hear. "I do think it's believable that in these days his (Mr Howard's) department kept that information from him.""

It is very much in keeping with the Howard character that he would arrange things such that he does not know what would either now or in the future be embarrassing for him to know. Nevertheless it is a strange and questionable system of administration that the head of government would be deliberately kept in the dark regarding crucial intelligence information. The tricks and devices of Howard (and Bush & Blair) are as nought anyway: it doesn't matter whether he is lying, ignorant, deluded, deceived, uninformed, or stupid. The information was wrong, the decision was wrong, the war was wrong and immoral. The heads of those responsible - whether they be intelligence, staffers, or ministerial (including the Prime Minister) - should roll.

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