Ten years after one million people marched through the streets of London on February 15, 2003 to protest against the invasion of Iraq in one of the biggest anti-war demonstrations in living memory, an overwhelming majority of Britons still believe that the war was “sold on a false prospectus’’ and “delivered little but bloodshed’’.
The findings contradict official claims that removing Saddam Hussein was worth it and that Iraq is a better place today.
According to a Guardian/ICM poll, published on Friday to mark the tenth anniversary of the London March, 55 per cent of the people agree that “the London marchers were right’’.
“That is almost twice the 28% who believe the marchers were wrong, on the basis that the war’s achievement in ‘toppling the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein’ eventually made the world a better place’’, The Guardian said.
Even a majority of Conservative voters, most of whom supported the invasion at the time, believe that the marchers were right with 57 per cent saying “yes’’.
“Ten years on, there is no partisan slant in the public’s opposition to the war,’’ sad the paper recalling how in the run-up to the invasion the nation was deeply divided on the issue.
The poll also shows that most Britons are opposed to the broader principle of “liberal interventionism’’ propagated by Tony Blair, former Labour Prime Minister.
Some 48 per cent said they believed “military interventions solve little, create enemies and generally do more harm than good” while 45 per cent said “through its armed forces, Britain generally acts as a force for good in the world”.