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Image of Iraq - the 20-year war (and counting)

Seven years after the second invasion of Iraq, Iraq's capital Baghdad, home to more than six million people, hardly gets one hour of non-interrupted electricity supplies every 24 hours. Soldiers with combat experience in Iraq are experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder resulting in horrific consequences (e.g., like trying to murder your own children). Oh, how the US government does love war! The only "winners" so far from the Iraqi war are the US's military industrial complex. If Martin Luther King, Jr. were alive today, he might say that the purpose of the US war against Iraq is the same as Vietnam: "to occupy it as an American colony." What will it take to get the US out of Iraq, or is that just not going to ever happen?


The current war in Iraq - now near the end of its seventh year - did not really begin on March 20, 2003, when George W. Bush ordered the United States military to invade Iraq. It actually began twenty years ago on January 17, 1991, when another Bush, George H.W., ordered the United States military to invade Iraq the first time...

When Iraq failed to withdraw its troops from Kuwait by the deadline, the United States commenced bombing as Operation Desert Shield turned into Operation Desert Storm. The 88,500 tons of bombs dropped widely destroyed both military and civilian infrastructure. The U.S. ground assault, Operation Desert Sabre, begin on February 24. A cease-fire was declared four days later. For the United States, there were 148 battle deaths and 145 non-battle deaths. This means that 293 Americans did die for the emir of Kuwait...

Tens of thousands of Iraqi soldiers were also killed, plus several thousand Iraqi and Kuwaiti civilians...

So, what should the United States have done when one autocratic Muslim state (Iraq) invaded another autocratic Muslim state (Kuwait)? The answer is the same no matter what country invades, bombs, attacks, or threatens another country - absolutely nothing.

It is not the purpose of the U.S. government to be the policeman, security guard, mediator, and babysitter of the world. The preamble to the Constitution mentions providing for the common defense, promoting the general welfare, and securing the blessings of liberty "to ourselves and our Posterity," not to the tired, poor, huddled masses, and wretched refuse on distant shores.

...the U.S. military should be engaged exclusively in defending the United States, not defending other countries, and certainly not attacking, invading, or occupying them. The U.S. military should be limited to defending the United States, securing U.S. borders, guarding U.S. shores, patrolling U.S. coasts, and enforcing no-fly zones over U.S. skies instead of defending, securing, guarding, patrolling, and enforcing in other countries. To do otherwise is to pervert the purpose of the military.

The world is full of evil, and conflicts between peoples have existed since the beginning of time. The United States has neither the responsibility nor the resources to resolve every conflict and stamp out all the evil in the world. Any American concerned about oppression, human rights violations, sectarian violence, ill treatment of women, forced labor, child labor, persecution, genocide, famine, natural disasters, or injustice anywhere in the world is perfectly free to contribute his own money to or go and fight on behalf of some particular cause. Just don't expect U.S. taxpayers to foot the bill for and U.S. soldiers to die for your cause.

Freeing Kuwait from Iraq - even if "only" 293 Americans died, even if Saddam Hussein had been deposed, even if it hadn't resulted in brutal sanctions, even if it hadn't led to another war, and even if it had ensured the free flow of oil at market prices - was not worth one cent from the U.S. treasury or one drop of blood from an American soldier.

The Twenty-Year War in Iraq


Original posting by Braincrave Second Life staff on Jan 22, 2011 at http://www.braincrave.com/viewblog.php?id=442

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