On December 31st 2021, the New Year’s Honours were announced. One name stuck out like a sore thumb, making his inclusion one of the most controversial in recent years.
That being former Prime Minister Tony Blair, who was given a knighthood. Many were outraged at this, something best expressed by a Change.org petition calling for it to be rescinded.
There are many reasons why people are outraged by this decision and are of the opinion that he doesn’t deserve this honour.
The most obvious reason, of course, is his handling of the Iraq War. Beyond whether it was legal or not, it was an unnecessary war that was only done to satiate Blair’s foreign interventionist beliefs and to provide for a Special Relationship between Britain and the US that only ever seems to benefit one party.
That’s without even going into the fact that the Weapons of Mass Destruction that were meant to be there turned out to be non-existent. To this day, much of Iraq is destabilised and in warfare, all whilst becoming a proxy for the Iranian regime. None of this would have happened without the toppling of Saddam Hussein in 2003.
However, there is more to Blair’s shortcomings than Iraq alone.
Up until 1997, limited immigration with a target of assimilation was government policy. When Blair took charge however, things rapidly changed, with a mass immigration policy that was carried out with a laissez-faire attitude which prioritised globalisation and economic growth.
It was also undertaken as a cynical conspiracy to change Britain completely – best described by one former Blair speechwriter when he noted that the policy was set to ‘rub the Right’s nose in diversity and render their arguments out of date’. Through this, 2.2 million new people came, the largest number in British history – the faults of such a uncontrolled wave, including community tension and wage suppression, hurt the very working classes that Labour were meant to be protecting.
Meanwhile, one of the reasons that Britain’s police and justice system is now as weak and authoritarian as it is boils down to his government. When Blair took over, the system was already heavily broken, thanks to Roy Jenkins’ disastrous reforms.
Blair’s government then made the problem worse, as they transformed the police force into a politically correct unit that would go on to arrest people for making edgy tweets. Meanwhile, his government also changed the way crime is recorded, concealing how bad much of the situation is in much of Britain nowadays, all the while curtailing the civil liberties of all to combat this problem.
He also allowed the managerial elite to take charge of Britain’s government, a revolution we are unfortunately still in the grip of. Spin doctors like Alastair Campbell were given access to the levers of power like never before. The creation of the Supreme Court has helped the left-wing cultural revolution to undermine both Parliament and the Monarchy itself.
The Human Rights Act 1998 emboldened ambulance-chasing lawyers, has made deporting illegal immigrants virtually impossible and made European law superior to Britain’s long-held uncodified constitutional norms and legislation.
Meanwhile, the British Union itself is at risk because of the devolution that his government implemented, which allowed for the UK’s constituent countries’ once-confined nationalist elements to become mainstream. Fanatics like the Scottish National Party on the one end and cynical careerists like Sadiq Khan on the other gained powerful positions they are unqualified for. No-one serious can claim that their aforementioned areas are better under their watch.
There is no doubt that Blair’s government did some good things. As a retail worker, I am very thankful for the minimum wage, and the legalisation of civil partnerships in 2005 paved the way for gay marriage in the future.
But none of that on its own is worthy of a knighthood.
In the end, his legacy is a combination of the social views of the ‘loony left’ 1980s Labour London councils and the Thatcherite economic views. He helped to make his party heavily unelectable for the foreseeable future – as well as lay out much of the divisions we saw with Brexit.
Former Prime Ministers who received such honours may have had their bad points, but they were clearly not cynical power-hungry leaders who have yet to admit any shame for what they got wrong, let alone have wrecked the country as much as Blair has.
For that alone, among so much else, Tony Blair doesn’t deserve a knighthood.