What should I ask Dr Hans Blix tomorrow?Posted by Ellee on Nov 23, 2006 in Uncategorized | 8 comments
He will be joined by Sir Jeremy Greenstock, Britain’s best known diplomat; Lord Wilson of Dinton, former Cabinet Secretary and Master of Emmanuel College, Cambridge ; and anti-war campaigning former Labour Minister Tony Benn.
So lots of top guns will be attending a whole day’s discussion entitled Debating the Evidence: Freedom of Information and I am thrilled Geoff invited me along. It is going to be to be a riveting day of debate along these lines:
“Freedom of Information?’ raises urgent topical questions about disclosure. Presentations by figures closely involved in recent events, including politicians, public servants, diplomats, historians, and diplomatic and foreign correspondents will address questions that focus especially on the invasion of Iraq. What are the tensions between the right to know and government responsibility? Is the public entitled to full disclosure? Does the government have a right to withhold information? Historians confront similar difficulties in writing contemporary history, when problems of restricted access can arise. How have attempts to tell the truth been limited or enabled as historians draw on archival resources? Events leading up to the Iraq war, and its legacy, raise related questions. How does the evidence for the existence of WMD play into larger questions of evidence and its interpretation? Does arms inspection offer a case-study in the uses and abuses of evidence? How does expert evidence play into political decisions, and how much do we know – or not know – about the circumstances surrounding the invasion of Iraq and its aftermath? What counts as evidence in the political domain will be the focus for this day of discussion on a subject of continuing public debate.”
Can you think of any questions I can ask that have never been raised before regarding Iraq? I wonder if Dr Blix will be as outspoken as during his Guardian interview when he said:
“I have my detractors in Washington. There are bastards who spread things around, of course, who planted nasty things in the media”.