The People v Tony Blair: Politics, the media and the anti-war movement
On Tuesday, March 11 2003, British Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon phoned Donald Rumsfeld, his opposite number in the U.S., and told him Britain might not participate in the invasion of Iraq. "We in Britain are having political difficulties," he said, "real difficulties, more than you might realise." He explained that there was a real chance an upcoming vote in parliament would go against the war, in which case Britain would have to 'disconnect' its troops from the operation. That night, Donald Rumsfeld went public about Blair's problems at a televised White House press conference, admitting Britain might not be showing up for the invasion. He reassured the media "there are workarounds." Blair, Hoon and their colleagues were furious.