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Senior Blair aide defends UK case for Iraq war at Chilcot Inquiry

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“Through no particular fault of the individuals involved, this inquisition lacks the ability to really cut through the fog,” said John Kampfner, a veteran British journalist and author of "Blair's Wars," a study on Tony Blair's interventionist foreign policy. "They will end up with a report that will contain some interesting new material for the historians, but what it will not do is deliver the reckoning that large swaths of the British public still demand.”

Blair scheduled to appear in late January

Blair’s appearance before the inquiry is slated for the fortnight from Jan. 25, which is easily the most eagerly awaited session of the hearings, which are chaired by Sir John Chilcot, a former civil servant.

Campbell’s appearance Tuesday was regarded as one of the most important to date.

The former Labour Party media adviser testified that while Mr. Blair had been determined to disarm the Iraqi dictator, Saddam Hussein, his former boss had never been in a "rush to war," and regarded military action as a last resort.

Campbell described the 2002 dossier, used to gain parliamentary support for war, as "a serious, solid piece of work," even though much of the information it contained turned out to be wrong with regard to Saddam's military capabilities.

In 2003, BBC journalist Andrew Gilligan wrote that the dossier included exaggerated and false claims at the direction of Campbell. One of his anonymous sources for reports that the dossier was inaccurate, who a government inquiry later identified as UK government weapons scientist David Kelly, went on to commit suicide.

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