The former head of Britain's intelligence agency has threatened to expose new details about the state of affairs leading up to the Iraq war.
Sir Richard Dearlove, who helmed the MI6 from 1999 to 2004, told the UK's Mail On Sunday that he has spent the last year writing "a record of events surrounding the invasion of Iraq from my then professional perspective." Dearlove told the Mail that he has been planning to leave his account as a record for scholars, but may reveal the details sooner if he doesn't agree with the findings of Britain's Chilcot Inquiry, which is investigating the country's role in the lead-up to the Iraq War:
'My intention is that this should be a resource available to scholars, but after my decease (may be sooner depending on what Chilcot publishes). I have no intention, however, of violating my vows of official secrecy by publishing any memoir.'
Dearlove, now Master at Pembroke College, Cambridge University, has taken a sabbatical from academic life to work on this account, and is said to be "extremely aggrieved" that Prime Minister Tony Blair and his chief spokesman Alastair Campbell overstated the possibility that Saddam Hussein's chemical weapons could jeopardize British troops in Cyprus, according to the Mail.
A security source told the Mail on Sunday that the account is "Sir Richard's time-bomb."
Dearlove is perhaps best known in the United States for denying MI6 involvement in the 1997 death of Princess Diana.One Brit weighed in on Twitter, referring to Dearlove as "our own Snowden" while another wondered if Dearlove would be found "dead in a forest with minor cuts on his wrists":
Our own Snowden? http://t.co/uMmikZZVtJ
-- Paul Hampartsoumian (@paulhiphop) July 22, 2013
-- Trig (@sambarnet) July 21, 2013
Dearlove left the intelligence agency in 2004, earlier then expected, though a spokesman at the time denied that he was leaving over differences with ministers over the handling of the Iraq War.