The petition calling for Tony Blair to lose the knighthood bestowed on him at the Queen’s New Year celebrations is nearing 1,000,000 signatures.
Established on Saturday (January 1st), it calls for the nomination – a Knight Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Garter – not to be given to the longest-serving Labor Prime Minister.
On Thursday (January 6th) at 7.30 p.m. the number of signatories was 902,563 and the number is rising.
Knightships are offered as gifts from the Queen, without the advice of the government.
But hundreds of thousands have the creator of the petition, Angus Scott, with the statement that the 68-year-old did not deserve the title and that it should be withdrawn.
Tonight (Thursday), Angus added an update to the petition on the sixth day, saying that “families of soldiers who have died in both Iraq and Afghanistan are asking for their message to be heard from both the government and the palace will”.
He continued, “In addition to the devastation of the loss of a loved one, these families now suffer the grief of witnessing the public honor of the man responsible for the death of their loved one.
“On your behalf, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for your personal support. It means a lot to each of these families.
“For this petition to have a chance to make an impact we must all get together to get it to over 1 million signatures to everyone you know, and encourage them to do the same.
“On behalf of those directly affected by this decision, thank you for your continued support.”
Tony was Prime Minister from May 2, 1997 to June 27, 2007 when he received an invitation from Queen Elizabeth II after the Labor Party’s landslide victory in the 1997 general election.
During his tenure, after the attacks of September 11, 2001, he led the country alongside US President George W. Bush into a bloody eight-year conflict in Iraq.
Thousands of people were killed during the Iraq conflict and there is still no stable government.
After serving as prime minister, Tony became the Middle East envoy and started his own nonprofit group, the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change.
Angus used the petition to accuse him of “causing irreparable damage to both the constitution of the United Kingdom and the structure of the nation’s society”.
He adds: “He was personally responsible for the deaths of innocent civilians and for service in various conflicts. For this alone he should be held accountable for war crimes.
“Tony Blair is the least deserving figure of any public honor, particularly one bestowed on Her Majesty the Queen.
“We request the Prime Minister to ask Her Majesty to remove this honor.”
Following the announcement of the knighthood, the Tony Blair Foundation tweeted, “It is a great honor to be named Knight Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, and I am deeply grateful to Her Majesty the Queen.
“It was a great privilege to serve as Prime Minister and I would like to thank everyone who has served by my side in politics, public service and in all parts of our society for their dedication and commitment to our country.”
Five other Prime Ministers have been knighted since the second half of the last century, including Sir Tony’s predecessor Sir John Major, Sir Edward Heath – in office 1970 to 1974, Sir Alec Douglas-Home – in office 1963 to 1964, Sir Anthony Eden – in Office 1955 to 1957 and Sir Winston Churchill – second time in office from 1951 to 1955.