How Dr Kelly convinced his family war was justified
Sara Pape, the sister of the late Dr David Kelly, told yesterday how he had "utterly" convinced the sceptical members of his family of the case for going to war against Iraq.
The only member of the immediate family to take the stand in person in court 73, the consultant plastic surgeon bided her time and systematically answered the questions put to her. When asked if there was anything to add, she created a picture of a man whose principles and beliefs would often hold sway.
Discussing Dr Kelly's stance on war in Iraq, Mrs Pape told how many of the family, including herself, were against it but he was ultimately "utterly convincing".
She said: "In discussions we have had since my brother's death we have realised that each of us changed our mind before the war started because of individual conversations we had with my brother.
"I was very surprised when he was absolutely and utterly convinced that there was almost certainly no solution other than a regime change, which was unlikely to happen peaceably and regrettably would require military action to enforce it," she added.
She explained how Dr Kelly had explained how the "war was not only inevitable but it was entirely justified in the light of what the Iraqi regime could produce in the future".
When her husband questioned whether Saddam Hussein would in time metaphorically hang himself, she told the inquiry: "My brother said that's absolutely what we cannot do if we have any idea of the consequences of what he might do. He had absolutely no doubt at all that unless there was a complete change of heart in Iraq or a complete change of regime, that they would have to be forcibly changed."
Mrs Pape, when talking about her brother's person-ality, described a very private man who had parts of his life unknown even to his own family. She recalled how he had spent three weeks in an hotel unbeknown to his family debriefing a Russian microbiologist who had defected.
Mrs Pape revealed a typical family reaction to his conversion to the Baha'i faith. She said his siblings were intrigued when their mother told them.
Mrs Pape painted the picture of a happy man enjoying one of his three daughter's wedding earlier this year when he was "in absolutely tremendous form".
Mrs Pape disclosed how she had agonised over his death. In a voice cracking with emotion, she said: "Believe me, I have lain awake many nights since going over in my mind whether I missed anything significant. In my line of work I do deal with people who may have suicidal thoughts and I should be able to spot them, even in a telephone conversation.
"But he certainly did not portray to me anything other than that he was tired," she added.
©Copyright 2003, iThe Herald (UK)
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