You're a Prime Minister who is an endogenous liar, and pretty well the entire country realises you're an endogenous liar. Everything you say is distrusted. Your lies are so clumsy and so blatant that even 'Mirror' readers can see though them. If you told an audience that your name was Gordon Brown, four-fifths of them would demand your birth certificate. The truth is more of a stranger to you than perineal hygiene was to Atilla the Hun. You're a few hundred days from being cast out of office, and you, your government, your ministers and your party have the legacy of a costly and probably illegal war during your term to answer for. What to do?
Well, given that no inquiry will come up with a result during your government, you could leave it to Cameron to appoint a suitably qualified and distinguished Chair, such as Franks, to conduct a rigourous and far-reaching impartial inquiry. A man who, say, like Franks, had held a chair in philosophy, served as Ambassador to the US, helped found NATO, chaired the predecessor to the OECD, and ran Lloyd's Bank for eight years. A Chair who would get to the bottom of what the British people want to know; who was responsible, and how. A Chair who would not hesitate to recommend criminal indictments against those who had transgressed, and would hear all but the most secret of evidence in public. Above all, an inquiry Chair able to nail clumsy lies from clumsy liars who held the great offices of State during the Iraq war.
Or you could, as an act of utter desperation, set up a risible secret inquiry under a civil servant both obscure and undistinguished with a brief not to seek blame but to disseminate 'lessons learned', and hope to Christ that Cameron swallows the con and doesn't feel obliged to set up a real Iraq inquiry on taking office.
Must have been a hard call, Gordon.