03 November 2014

Kellie Merritt on the 'War Powers'

One of my valued colleagues on the Committee of the Campaign for an Iraq War Inquiry, which is also seeking reform of the so-called ‘war powers’, is Iraq War widow Kellie Merritt, whose husband Paul Pardoel was killed in 2005 when a RAF C-130 Hercules crashed north of Baghdad.

Visiting Canberra where she will speak at a symposium at the Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, she spoke to senior Canberra Times reporter Ross Peake:

I end up with the conclusion that we invaded Iraq for no reason, that the fall-back reason has backfired (especially for the Iraqi people) and that my husband did not die for any tangible purpose.

This leads me to question the nature of the contract between the military and our government.

Conventional democratic wisdom holds that it is disastrous for the military to second guess our democratically elected government's decisions.

This makes it all the more important that our government exercises its decision-making processes with caution, transparency and a sense of accountability.

Read Ross Peake’s full account of the interview, as published in today’s Canberra Times, here.