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POLITICS: Blair makes Unprecedented Apology

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posted on Feb, 9 2005 @ 10:11 PM
Tony Blair made a televised apology across the air waves after being refused by Speaker Michael Martin. The apology was to the Maguire and Conlon families for a wrongful imprisonment. The wrongful imprisonment was for IRA bomb attacks in 1974.
Tony Blair had to deliver an unprecedented public apology yesterday for one of the most notorious miscarriages of justice to a television camera after being prevented from making it to MPs by the Speaker.

Michael Martin refused to allow Mr Blair to use Prime Minister's Questions to apologise to the Conlon and Maguire families for their wrongful imprisonment over the IRA bomb attacks in Guildford and Woolwich in 1974.

Tony Blair delivers his statement of apology
Mr Blair then summoned television cameras to his private room at the Commons where he read out a statement saying he was "very sorry" that they had been subject to such an ordeal and such an injustice

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

I know Blair has been getting his fair share of criticism regarding the Iraq War and his seeming similarities to the Bush administration, but this is a bold act and for a good reason. The families have suffered personal losses as well as an imposed stigma attached to their name, and though an apology doesn't amend the mistake, the publicity should go a long way towards personal vindication.

But the entire incident is held by many that the Prime Minister, current and prior, is not responsible for this act of injustice. With that in mind, the staunch and very public apology is impressionable and highlights the positive nature of an individual that has his share of controversy. Now if the only the initiative shown by his insistence to make the apology could boil over into other matters.........

posted on Feb, 11 2005 @ 04:04 AM
My respect for Blair has been somewhat regained through this gesture. Good on him. If only more politicians would act this way.

And shame on the parliament and the speaker of the house for not allowing it.

posted on Feb, 11 2005 @ 04:28 AM
It dosent give them back their lost years, but then at least they have a life. The innocents killed in Birmingham dont have that, no-one seems to care about that.
Perhaps the IRA could hand over the murderers as they have already admitted it was wrong on their part to kill them ( A bit late mind you seeing as the deed is done and the people in the pub are already dead ). No? Oh well just thought id ask.

posted on Feb, 11 2005 @ 04:38 AM
A school classmate of my mother's was killed in the afforementioned IRA terrorist attack; she was only 17, and had just joined the army. Will her family get an apology, from anyone?

posted on Feb, 11 2005 @ 04:47 AM
Good point, Paul!

Also, I doubt very much that it was a truly "heartfelt" apology. Like just about eveything that comes out of that man's mouth, it was just another example of political "spin". Some spin doctor told him it was the right time to do it, so he did.

posted on Feb, 11 2005 @ 04:55 AM
The IRA have already appologised for a lot of the Evil crap they pulled in the 70's-80's but the thing with the IRA is that when they make a mistake someone dies, when we make a mistake someone spends a decade or two in Prison.
So really an appology from the IRA for killing someone is as hollow as Blairs, after all the person that the IRA killed isnt around to accept the appology, where as the people who went to jail are. See the difference there?
Of course you will always get the IRA appologists saying that they were fighting for freedom etc, but then the IRA were always good at hiding in the shadows killing from afar then running back to their bolt holes to slap each other on the back at a job well done, yeah real heroic freedom fighters.

[edit on 11-2-2005 by Janus]

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