TONY Blair’s appearance at the unveiling of a national war memorial to those who served in Iraq and Afghanistan has been branded “sickening”.
The former Labour Prime Minister was sitting in front of current Lib Dem leader Tim Farron and next to the Duke of Gloucester who was wearing his array of military medals for the ceremony on Horse Guards Parade in central London.
After being spotted behind a solemn looking Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall, social media users watching on TV hit out at the gall of Mr Blair for even showing up at an event commemorating the fallen in a controversial war he gave the go ahead for.
David Jones, tweeted: “Sickening Tony Blair is at the service for the new memorial to soldiers killed in Iraq & Afghanistan today.”
Nick Leaney, said: “So families of fallen servicemen not invited to the #Iraqafganistan memorial but Tony Blair is…hmm looking forward to headlines on this one.”
Another user, said: “Tony Blair arrives at the Iraq/Afganistan memorial service, a few minutes ago and takes a front seat. This man has the skin of a rhinoceros.”
And Colin Randell wrote: “Blair the shameless, you’ll never see another brass-neck quite like his.”
Patricia Dooley, said: “Iraq & Afghanistan Memorial Service can’t believe Tony Blair had the bloody brass neck to attend thick skinned a***hole!!”
Jules Lowes added: “How does Tony Blair have the AUDACITY to turn up to a memorial for servicemen and women who served in the Gulf, Iraq & Afghanistan war.”
Others called for him to be “lynched” at the end of the ceremony while Channel 4 Gogglebox star, Louis Michael, tweeted: “This is like Hitler turning up at a Holocaust memorial.
“Tony Blair should be hiding his head in shame, instead he adds insult to injury.”
Families of those who gave their lives for their country in Iraq hit out at Mr Blair yesterday for being invited to the ceremony, which many of them were not, with many saying it was a disgrace.
Mr Blair’s appearance comes less than a year since he appeared unrepentant after the Chilcot Report into the Iraq War was highly critical of his administration and found “military action at the time was not the last resort”.
Mr Blair looked on as the Queen unveiled the national memorial honouring the Armed Forces and civilians who served their country during the Gulf War and conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Prime Minister Theresa May, the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Harry, the Princess Royal, the Duke of York, Boris Johnson, Sir Michael Fallon, Philip Hammond, David Cameron, and senior figures from the Cabinet also attended the ceremony.
Around 2,500 invited guests, including representatives of veterans, serving the military, bereaved families, charity workers, civil servants and politicians, attended a military Drumhead Service on Horse Guards Parade in Whitehall.
Mr Blair’s appearance is being seen as a kick in the face by the families of those who lost loved ones, as well as military personnel who suffered life-changing physical and mental injuries from the Iraq War.
Seeing him mourning the dead adds fuel to the fire after some of the affected families did not even receive an invite to the service.
Last night Reg Keys, whose son Tom was killed in Iraq in 2003, said: “I would not have thought Tony Blair would have been a welcome face at such a service given we were misled over the Iraq war.
“I’m sure his ego will not allow him to stay away from it.
“A lot of families will not welcome his presence and after such a short space of time following the publication of the Chilcot report.
“Had I been invited I would have gone to honour my son, but nobody invited me.”
John and Marilyn Miller, who lost their son Simon in the same incident that caused Tom Keys to losing his life, were outraged at the decision.
Mr Miller said: “Tony Blair has been invited but military families have not.
“It is an absolute disgrace. How can that be right?
“We were totally disgusted that we had not been invited. Of course, we would have wanted to go, it is a memorial for our son as well.”
BBC has totally ignored the fact this happened why? I thought BBC News were meant to report news and be “Impartial”? Or are they too scared to report against Blair as Alastair Campbell Blairs PR friend would rather they reported on smearing Corbyn?
Why anyone still watches BBC is beyond me.