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Jagger Blasts Blair Over Iraq
Published on Monday, September 12, 2005 by the Agence France Presse
MADRID - Rolling Stones superstar Mick Jagger said he was "shocked" by British Prime Minister Tony Blair's attitude toward Iraq and doubts whether the legendary rock and roll band will one day perform in Baghdad, the magazine El Pais Semanal reported on Sunday.
At the time of the Iraq invasion, "I was ambivalent; getting rid of Saddam Hussein was a gift for humanity and I thought that there was a coherent plan to put Iraq back on its feet," he said in an interview with the Spanish magazine.
But the sexagenarian rock legend referred to a Downing Street memorandum in July 2002, saying it "shocked me to know that Blair already knew that the weapons of mass destruction were simply an excuse and that there was nothing planned for the day after" the invasion.
"I doubt that the Stones will ever perform in Baghdad," the lead singer of the Rolling Stones, which is currently on its 31st world tour, told the magazine.
Jagger also denounced the US-led military coalition in Iraq for conducting what he described as a war to defend a regime which does not seem very concerned about the rights of women and minorities.
"If we do not take intelligent steps, a part of Iraq will end up becoming an Islamic republic, a puppet of Tehran," he added.
The Stones' new album A Bigger Band, which came out on September 6, takes a swipe at US President George W. Bush and his neo-conservative supporters in the song, Sweet Neo Con.
Copyright © 2005 Agence France Presse