London, Sept 1 (ANI): Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair has claimed in his memoir 'A Journey' that the 9/11 attacks represented a declaration of war by a new type of enemy and added that he understood the new war was ideological. He admits that at that time, he did not fully understand the history of Islam and underestimated the "hold of this extremism".
He claims he quickly realised the implications of the suicide bombers crashing their aircraft into the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon, but insists he followed his instinct and convictions, and would not have changed his decisions on Iraq or Afghanistan even if he had known the length of the campaign, The Telegraph reports.
"To try to escape conflict would have been a grave mistake, political cowardice," an extract of his memoir states.
Blair also disclosed that he once came close to authorising the shooting down of a commercial flight heading to London, after it lost radio contact. But after the deadline passed, he decided to hold fire, and once the pilot re-established contact, he had to sit down and thank the heavens. (ANI)