TONY BLAIR sought yet again to justify the conquest of Iraq in a recent speech. He harked back to what he plainly regards as an earlier triumph, NATO's 1999 war against Yugoslavia. Blair cited this as a precedent for the Anglo-American attack on Iraq. Even "before September 11", he explained, "the world's view of the justification of military action had been changing. The only clear case in international relations for armed intervention had been self defence... But the notion of intervening on humanitarian grounds had been gaining currency."