I have never told a lie, Tony Blair insisted on Sky TV last night. But within half an hour, a devastating bombshell on Channel 4 News blew his credibility to smithereens and proved conclusively that over Iraq he was again lying through his teeth.
No longer is there any room for doubt. This Prime Minister not only took Britain to war on false pretences. He also misrepresented the confidential legal advice from Attorney General Lord Goldsmith to give a dishonest summary to MPs and even his own Cabinet.
Mr Blair has insisted all along that the war was unequivocally legal, that he had been given no caveats or conflicting advice and that the Attorney General had never changed his mind. But those words are now exposed as utterly false.
Lord Goldsmith warned that failure to secure a second UN resolution authorising war would force the Government 'urgently' to reconsider its legal case.
He warned that to invade Iraq without a second resolution, "we would need to demonstrate hard evidence of noncompliance and non co-operation."
Yet no such 'hard evidence' existed. Indeed, chief UN weapons inspector Hans Blix was at that very moment making it clear that Saddam was starting to comply.
Consider what happened next in this squalid saga.
All the Attorney General's doubts were sent to Mr Blair on March 7, 2003. Yet somehow none of them appeared in the 'summary' of his advice given to MPs and the Cabinet ten days later, on March 17.
'Stinks to high heaven'
This affair stinks to high heaven. It is now clear that the Government's chief legal officer - the very cornerstone of a healthy democracy - has prostituted his office for political ends.
We also have ineluctable evidence that the Cabinet was denied the opportunity to see his full report - in itself a flagrant breach of the Ministerial Code of Conduct.
Make no mistake: If Blair had told the truth about the legal reservations, it is very possible that Parliament would never have voted for war. The lives of 86 British troops and tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians might not have been lost.
So what happened in those ten days to produce such a dramatic change in Goldmith's legal advice? Were his arms twisted in Downing Street by his friend Charlie Falconer and Baroness Morgan? One thing is sure. Unless he can come up with a very convincing explanation, his reputation is damaged beyond repair.
And the Prime Minister? The BBC spent all yesterday trying to denigrate the latest Tory poster. It shows Blair's picture with the lacerating slogan: "If he's prepared to lie to take us to war, he's prepared to lie to win an election".
Never were words more prescient. It is difficult to remember any precedent in recent times for such an attack on the personal integrity of a party leader. But then, it is hard to recall any recent Prime Minister who has so demeaned his office.
And it isn't simply because of his record on Iraq, with its dodgy dossiers, his denial that he had any part in hounding weapons expert Dr David Kelly to his death and now his lies about the legal case for war.
He once claimed he would be 'purer than pure', but has been up to his neck in sleaze, from Bernie Ecclestone to the Hindujas and Mandelson (twice) to Lakshmi Mittal.
This is the man who has politicised the civil service, undermined the integrity of our intelligence agencies, disdained the Commons, neutered the Lords, opened the way to electoral fraud through a reckless expansion of postal voting, promoted useless cronies and encouraged his liar-in-chief Alastair Campbell to corrupt decent standards in public life.
Mr Blair's mendacious behaviour over the Attorney General's memorandum brings shame and discredit to his office. He is unfit to be Prime Minister.
JFK, Nixon, and Natural Born Killers... Oliver Stone has never been one to shy away from controversial topics. Now he turns his hand to documentary filmmaking with Comandante, a portrait of Fidel Castro. Getting a cinematic release in the UK, the film was dropped by American TV network HBO in the wake of the Cuban leader's decision to imprison 75 dissidents and execute three hijackers earlier this year.
You've made many films about historic icons, but this is the first time you've used the documentary format. Why now?
In 1999 I did Any Given Sunday, which was a very exhausting feature film for me, and it was time to take a little bit of a break. As you know, in the 90s the budgets in Hollywood movies got so big - what was costing $19m in the early 90s was shooting up to, like, $50m. So it was more and more about marketing, bigger budgets, bigger egos. It's just very difficult to work inside that system - not that I've given up on it, but I just wanted a break from it.
Fernando Sulichin [producer] offered me a chance to interview Fidel Castro for Spanish TV. We had good access. We saw him in February 2002 and spent 30 hours with him. Originally it was just going to be for Spanish TV, and it grew and we thought we had more material because he was so forthcoming. We had American interest and European interest and people have responded well. HBO bought it for American distribution but it was indefinitely postponed. It was supposed to air on 5th May this year, when there was an uproar about some recent events in Cuba in April. The film is still postponed.
Do you think it will ever be seen in America?
That is a good question. HBO asked us to go back to Cuba and interview Fidel Castro again about this most recent incident - the imprisoning of 75 dissidents, and execution of three hijackers so quickly. We went back and Fidel Castro gave us the same amount of time, if not more, than the first time. He's passionate and concerned and he was upset by the accusations and he's very specific in denying them, and so on. The resulting film is called Looking For Fidel, it has a narrower focus than Comandante. It's more about this particular situation this year, so it's more of a grilling.
Did Castro rise to your expectations of him?
I didn't have many preconceptions, and I did not present myself as an expert. He's presented as a bad guy, and it all stems from Nixon's meeting with him, calling him a communist and anti-American. That set off the whole chain of distrust of Castro. He had to go to the Soviets for support. He was very paranoid at that time about the island being invaded by American forces.
The abuse, the attacks on Cuba have not really been played up. I tried to do this a little bit in Looking For Fidel, just to show the American people what is really going on. Castro is isolated in the hemisphere and for those reasons I admire him because he's a fighter. He stood alone and in a sense he's Don Quixote, the last revolutionary, tilting at this windmill of keeping the island in a state of, I suppose, egalitarianism, where everyone would get the break, everyone gets the education, and everyone gets good water.
In the film Castro seems to accord you a certain amount of respect, because of your military record and your service in Vietnam. Were you surprised by that?
No, we left that in because it was necessary to establish why he was talking to me like this. I think honestly, without blowing my horn, he did respect me. Part of the reason he respected me was that I had been in combat. He had done guerrilla war for years, and he feels that there is a truth in combat, that we can talk as men, as equals. I left that in to give an idea of why he was talking.
Have you been following the Hutton inquiry here in the UK? How do you see the British political landscape at the moment?
What amazes me about the whole thing is that the British are much more conscientious than Americans. The people are more educated, they are not as led by the media as they are in America. It seems that the British people do have a sense of independence from the media. Goebbels once said that the bigger the lie the more likely people are to believe it, and in America it's so big that once the story goes out on a national network and that's the story. The words are controlled, the thinking is controlled and it's just amazingly conformist to me.
If you had 30 hours with George W Bush, what would you be trying to get out of him?
The truth: I don't think it's possible to get 30 hours with Bush. I think he's scared of the camera. I saw a documentary with a young woman he did, and he just joshes with her all the time. He never confronts anybody, and he never looks you in the eye. It's all "Hey buddy, how are yah?" all that American slang language. It's not dialogue, it's not feeling. He has a shallow manner, which is a complete contradiction to Castro. Castro will talk to you. He's a real human being. I see George Bush as a synthetic person. As I once said, he's an ex-alcoholic who believes in Jesus. What could be more dangerous!
Your next film is about Alexander the Great. How do you feel about Baz Lurhmann tackling the same topic?
It's the biggest challenge of my life. It's just a great story, and I hope I can do it some justice. My race was always with the script. It was 'how do you make a story', because it's a great story, but if you go for surface events it will never work. You have to get into a theme, and find the character. It's very hard to do. I'm not sure I have, but I'm about to take the shot.
Baz has got a great vision, a very strong director - very interesting, I particularly liked his Romeo + Juliet. No doubt, he can do something extravagant and beautiful. I don't know his theme, what he's going to do, but it certainly would have been more difficult for them if they'd gone first with Leo DiCaprio because he's a bigger star [than Colin Farrell]. But I really believe in Colin Farrell. I think Colin's got true grit, and I think he will surprise people as Alexander.