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Last Updated: Wednesday, 6 October, 2004, 18:06 GMT 19:06 UK
Blair blamed for Iraq 'half war'
Michael Ancram
Mr Ancram pledged action on Zimbabwe
Tony Blair is to blame for allowing Iraq to degenerate into a "dangerous half war", shadow foreign secretary Michael Ancram has said.

He accused Mr Blair of breaking promises on post-war planning.

Mr Ancram also went on the attack over Europe, in his keynote speech at the Tories' annual rally in Bournemouth.

He accused the prime minister of "surrendering" to France and Germany on the European Army, EU constitution and the Charter of Fundamental Rights.

'Poodle Blair'

"There can be few more humiliating sights than a British Prime Minister ingratiating himself with his French and German counterparts.

"One day poodle Blair, next day dachshund Blair but bulldog Blair - never," Mr Ancram told Tory representatives.

On Iraq, Mr Ancram said failures to ensure proper security and maintain employment in Iraq had fuelled violence now blighting the country.

"Tony Blair assured us even before the war that plans for post-war Iraq were `in hand'. We now know there were none," he told conference.

'Price of failure'

He stressed that he thought the threat of Saddam had to be "dealt with" otherwise it "would still be with us" and increasing.

But Iraqis had the right to expect a "comprehensive plan to win the peace,"

And the failure to produce adequate plans "helped turn a successful war into a dangerous half-war. And the price for that failure is now being paid".

Mr Ancram also accused Mr Blair of misleading the public over the intelligence on Saddam's weapons of mass destruction.

'Repatriating powers'

He said Mr Blair "should have trusted the British people with the truth", but instead he had "misled" them and had now lost their trust.

"And when a Prime Minister is not trusted on grave matters of intelligence how dangerous is that for the country as a whole?," he added.

Mr Ancram said the Tories would set about restoring "a sense of confidence in Britain again" - and repatriate powers from Brussels - if they won the general election.

He would take early action on issues such as Zimbabwe and Gibraltar, he said.

And he told Romano Prodi - who came up with a plan for British Olympic medallists to celebrate under a European flag - to "get lost".

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