Remember the weapons of mass destruction and all the other lies that were used to justify the invasion of Iraq? I can't think of a better way to expose this tragic absurdity than the one employed by Sue Townsend in her novel "Adrian Mole and the Weapons of Mass Destruction":
Ashby de la Zouch
Private and Confidential
The Right Honourable
Tony Blair, MP, QC Leicestershire
10 Downing Street
September 29th 2002
Dear Mr Blair
You may remember me – we met at a Norwegian Leather Industry reception at the House of Commons in 1999. Pandora Braithwaite, now the Junior Minister for Brownfield Regeneration, introduced us, and we had a brief conversation about the BBC during which I opined that the Corporation’s attitude towards provincial scriptwriters was disgraceful. Unfortunately, you were called away to attend to some urgent matter on the far side of the room.
I am writing to thank you for warning me about the imminent threat to Cyprus posed by Saddam Hussein’s Weapons of Mass Destruction.
I had booked a week’s holiday in the Athena Apartments, Paphos, Cyprus, for the first week of November for me and my eldest son at a total cost of £571 plus airport tax. My personal travel advisor, Johnny Bond, of Latesun Ltd, demanded a deposit of £57.10, which I paid to him on September 23rd. Imagine my alarm when I turned on the television the next day and heard you telling the House of Commons that Saddam Hussein could attack Cyprus with his Weapons of Mass Destruction within forty-five minutes!
I immediately rang Johnny Bond and cancelled the holiday. (With only forty-five minutes’ warning, I could not risk being on the beach and out of earshot of a possible Foreign Office announcement.)
My problem is this, Mr. Blair. Latesun Ltd are refusing to refund my deposit unless I furnish them with proof that a) Saddam Hussein has a stockpile of Weapons of Mass Destruction b) that he can deploy them within forty-five minutes, and c) that they can reach Cyprus.
Johnny Bond who was, according to his colleagues, ‘away from his desk’ yesterday (I suspect that he was on the Stop the War march), has dared to question the truth of your statement to the House!
Would it be possible to send a handwritten note confirming the threat to Cyprus so that I can pass it on to Johnny Bond and therefore retrieve my deposit? I can ill afford to lose £57.10.
I remain, sir,
PS I wonder if you would ask your wife, Cherie, if she would agree to be the guest speaker at the Leicestershire and Rutland Creative Writing Group’s Literary Dinner on December 23rd this year. Will Self has turned us down – rather curtly, in fact. We don’t pay a fee or expenses but I think she would find us a lively and stimulating group.
Anyway, Mr Blair, keep up the good work.