The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

Great Britain:
The death of an expert

Jul 28, 2003

This is a translation from the July 25, 2003 issue of Lutte Ouvrière (Workers Struggle), a French Trotskyist weekly.

The death of Dr. David Kelly, the chief expert in "weapons of mass destruction" for the British army for several years, had more impact on the British political and media scene than the deaths of thousands of innocent Iraqis assassinated in the course of these same years with the active complicity of London.

To believe the official theory, developed in full-page articles and even special supplements in all the great British newspapers, Kelly committed suicide. Charged with inspecting Iraqi arms, he was supposed to have broken down after news leaked that he told a BBC journalist that Blair and his ministers deliberately inflated the estimates they received about Iraqi arms.

Blair's lies are undeniable. As for the rest, it's possible, although according to the police there remain plenty of unanswered questions on whether he committed suicide. Whatever the case is, that doesn't make Dr. Kelly a victim, and still less the type of "truth martyr" which the press today wants to make of him.

Kelly was a highly qualified scientist who began by putting his capacities to work making "weapons of mass destruction" (chemical and bacteriological) for the benefit of British imperialism. Later he was promoted to the rank of expert in the surveillance of poor countries like Iraq, over which imperialism wanted to impose its dictates. Kelly chose his camp and it was that of the power of money.

Was Kelly displeased that ignorant politicians distorted his conclusions to justify their policies, which certainly wasn't the first time? Did he want to reestablish the truth after the fact with respect to Iraq? In any case, he had taken care not to say much about such revelations when they could still have an impact on events – that is to say, before the start of the invasion, when British public opinion still felt mobilized and strong against British participation in the war, and when Blair didn't permit any false note in his own camp. On this level also, Kelly had chosen his camp.