Tony Blair’s nexus of Middle East conflicts of interest

“It’s easy enough to see what Tony Blair has got out of the Middle East peace process: introductions to Arab rulers; a nice address in Jerusalem; a continued presence on the world stage. What’s more difficult to see is what the Middle East peace process has got out of Tony Blair.”

The Associated Press reports:

Since stepping down as Britain’s prime minister, Tony Blair has built up a formidable work portfolio: He’s an international peacemaker, a consultant for investment bank JP Morgan, a pricey public speaker and a philanthropist.

He’s so many things to so many people that it’s starting to cause him trouble — with human rights groups, the Palestinian Authority, and even current British Prime Minister David Cameron, who described Blair’s deals with Moammar Gadhafi’s regime as “dodgy deals in the desert.”

Rights workers who have tried to track his activities find it’s sometimes unclear which job he is doing — or who is paying him to do it. Crucially, when he’s in the Arab world as the Middle East Quartet’s peace envoy some of the very parties he’s meant to be negotiating with aren’t sure whose interests he’s representing.

“The problem is a lack of transparency over how Tony Blair has organized his business affairs,” said Robert Palmer, a campaigner at pressure group Global Witness. “If former leaders are appearing on a public stage, it’s important that they do all they can to make sure they are seen to be open and clear over what they are doing.”

Blair’s effectiveness and impartiality in the Middle East are under attack from the Palestinian Authority, which accuses him of acting “like an Israeli diplomat” after he refused to support their decision to sidestep negotiations and to ask the Security Council for admission to the United Nations as a state. At the same time, the collapse of Moammar Gadhafi’s regime in Libya has led to the discovery of documents that show that Blair maintained ties to the Libyan leader even after he left office.

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3 thoughts on “Tony Blair’s nexus of Middle East conflicts of interest

  1. Ian Arbuckle

    Blair is a lair, a war criminal having coned the his country into a war of aggression, and if that wasn’t enough to have him hung by the neck or at least put behind bars, he now gallivants around the world a on some nebulous tax payers account as a “peace envoy” without having to answer to anyone while making millions on the side but then he is on holiday when Israel bombards a civilian population in Gaza in 2009.

    Blair is a most disgusting example of psychopathy that may need psychiatric help but fist he needs to taken out of circulation. Unfortunately we have created a society where the worst effluent, such monsters as Blair, rises to the top.

  2. Anon

    Someone needs to explain to the AP that for a person to be considered “an international peacemaker” they must first make peace. Otherwise, Blair sound like the undergraduate who calls himself a doctor because he plans to go to medical school in four years. Yes, a reasonable person must say, you may give yourself the honorable title, but only after you’ve earned it, because, chances are, you are full of shit right now. And indeed, Tony Blair seems to have no shortage of shit.

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