Sunday 20 May 2007
"I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history," Mr. Carter, a Nobel Peace Prize winner, said in a telephone interview with The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette from the Carter Center in Atlanta.
"The overt reversal of
In an interview on BBC radio, he criticized Mr. Blair for his close relations with the president, particularly concerning the
"Abominable," he said when asked how he would characterize Mr. Blair's relationship with Mr. Bush. "Loyal, blind, apparently subservient."
Mr. Carter, who was president from 1977 to 1981 and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002 for his charitable work, was an outspoken opponent of the invasion of
"I think that the almost undeviating support by
In the newspaper interview, Mr. Carter said Mr. Bush has taken a "radical departure from all previous administration policies" with the
"We now have endorsed the concept of pre-emptive war where we go to war with another nation militarily, even though our own security is not directly threatened, if we want to change the regime there or if we fear that some time in the future our security might be endangered," he said.
The White House declined to comment on his statements.
Mr. Carter told the BBC that if Mr. Blair had opposed the invasion he could have reduced the ensuing harm by making it tougher for Washington to shrug off critics, even if the British prime minister had not been able to stop the war. "It would certainly have assuaged the problems" that have arisen, he said.
He characterized one of the defenses of the Bush administration in America and worldwide" as "O.K., we must be more correct in our actions than the world thinks because Great Britain is backing us."
Mr. Carter told the BBC that the combined support of Mr. Bush and Mr. Blair for the war "has prolonged the war and increased the tragedy that has resulted."
In the newspaper interview, Mr. Carter, who brokered the Camp David accords between Egypt and Israel, also criticized Mr. Bush's Middle East policies. "For the first time since Israel was founded, we've had zero peace talks to try to bring a resolution of differences in the Middle East," he said. "That's a radical departure from the past."