I don't often find myself agreeing with Gordon Brown, but on the subject of the Iraq war inquiry I tend to feel that there is little to be gained by holding it in public.
First of all, the only reason we're having this inquiry in the first place is at the demand of those who've already made their minds up about the rights and wrongs of the war. Whether it is public or private, it the inquiry doesn't agree with their point of view then they'll claim it was a whitewash.
And like Brown, the only people I can see gaining anything from a pubic inquiry are lawyers - as with the Bloody Sunday inquiry debacle. There's no point in doing all that again when people have already made up their minds and will not be dissuaded one way or the other.