Richard Norton-Taylor notes the moral and legal consequences of the recklessness of the Iraq invasion:

Under the fourth Geneva convention, adopted in 1949, occupying powers are obliged to protect the civilian population of the country they are occupying. No wonder the British and American governments backed away from the description of "occupying power" – as evidence to Chilcot has heard – even though that was their formal status established by the UN.

Some well-placed former public figures involved have said privately that prominent policy-makers in London and Washington at the time could be tried more easily for war crimes for breaching the fourth Geneva convention than for other acts or omissions.

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