On Iraq and America’s Folly

United States forces captured Saddam Hussein December 13, 2003, at ad-Dawr near Tikrit. Iraqi courts found him guilty of numerous offences. He was executed by hanging December 30, 2006. U.S. Army Photo

From five words flow the events we see today in Iraq, writes International Affairs analyst Jonathan Manthorpe in today’s column. As the United States grappled with a response to 9/11 Donald Rumsfield, then Secretary of Defense, said, “What if Iraq is involved?”  What has  been largely overlooked about America’s invasion of Iraq, Manthorpe argues, “is how conclusively the Iraq invasion fouled the west’s moral authority in a world where new centres of cultural, political and military power are rapidly emerging.” An excerpt: 

There has never been a satisfactory explanation why George W. Bush and his Praetorian Guard nursed such a visceral hatred of Saddam Hussein.

But they came to power in 2000 intent on vendetta, and within hours of the September 2001 al-Qaida attacks on New York and Washington the closest officials and advisers around Bush were looking for a Saddam connection. Within days, senior officers in the Pentagon realized with alarm the administration had already loosed the unstoppable juggernaut that would lead to the invasion of Iraq and removal of Saddam in 2003.

In the intervention months an entirely spurious paper trail was fabricated in Washington and London, creating the fantasy desired by the ideologue dunderheads around Bush. Saddam, they claimed, not only conspired with Osama bin Laden in the attacks on the United States, he had also developed weapons of mass destruction that threatened the entire Middle East and beyond.

Blitzkriegs built on lies never end well. Hundreds of thousands of people have died in over a decade of warfare in Iraq. But now it gets even worse. It is beginning to look as though the Bush coven has created the conditions for bin Laden’s heirs to realize their master’s dream.

Well armed fighters of the fanatical Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), an al-Qaida spin-off group, is marching on the Iraqi capital Baghdad after capturing the central towns of Tikrit and Mosul, the old heartland of Saddam’s regime. The ISIS is, like al-Qaida, a militant group from the Sunni Muslim faction of Islam. The government of Iraq is led by Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, a Shia Muslim, whose intolerance for the Sunnis has given ISIS the foothold to become the voice of the Sunni regions.

Bin Laden’s dream was to recreate the Caliphate of Islam’s early days when all Muslims came under one government … read more (subscription)*

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Bin Laden’s disciples move to realize his dream.

Jonathan Manthorpe’s columnist page is here.

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