US Foreign Policy Part 1: IRAQ

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Some overweight, ignorant, Big Mac loving, sympathizers of the Bush Administration will come out with lines like, ‘The world’s a better place without Saddam Hussein’.  Sure they aren’t worried about the legality or validity of the intelligence surrounding ‘Weapons Of Mass Destruction’,  this is America, God’s on our side, remember!  It was seen by some as a noble decision to invade, a great act of liberation for a people at the hands of such a brutal dictator.  A dictator which Donald Rumsfeld was only too happy to meet in 1983.  Rumsfeld’s meeting with Saddam Hussein was significant in that he was meeting with the President of a Country who was at war with Iran (1983-1988) and using chemical weapons on Iranian Soldiers.  Ironically these chemical weapons of ‘MASS DESTRUCTION’ which were destroyed in 1991, were supposedly  the major threat that warranted the US led invasion in 2003.  Where did Saddam get the materials for weapons like these? Wait for it… AMERICA!

It’s funny how American foreign policy can shift so dramatically in the space of two decades.  The US went from supporting the Iraqi Government financially, resourcefully, and on an intelligence basis in 1983, to alerting the ‘free world’ that this rouge government had the capability of using chemical and biological weapons in a way that would gravely threaten the safety of innocent American people. US 5000+ Nuclear Weapons/ Iraq 0 Nuclear weapons, surely you could see their concern, No?

In the months before the invasion, a peace agreement was proposed by Iraqi officials, including the Chief Of The Iraqi Intelligence Service who wanted Washington to know that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction and offered to allow American troops and experts to conduct a search; they also offered full support for any US plan in the Arab-Israeli peace process, and to hand over a man accused of being involved in the World Trade Centre bombing in 1993.  If this is about oil, they added, they would also talk about US oil concessions.  Washington’s reply was ‘Shock and Awe’ bombing.

UN Chief Inspector at the time Hans Blix who led the hunt for WMD’s said the following later in 2003.

‘Those who are 100 percent certain there are weapons of mass destruction turned out to have less than zero percent knowledge of where the purported hidden caches might be.’  In Feb 2003, Blix is reported to have warned both then British PM Tony Blair and then US Secretary of Defence Condoleezza Rice about the dangers of entering Iraq with a substantial lack of evidence of the presence of WMD’s.

Indeed Hans Blix was not alone in his opposition to such pre-emptive action.  Benjamin B. Ferencz, who served as the U.S.’s Chief Prosecutor of Nazi war crimes at the Nuremberg Trials following World War II, had denounced the Iraq War as an aggressive war (named at Nuremberg as “the supreme international crime”) and stated his belief that George W. Bush as the war’s “initiator”, who should be tried for war crimes.

In a 2002 book, Scott Ritter a Nuclear Weapons Inspector in Iraq from 1991-1998,

he argued against an invasion and expressed doubts about the Bush Administration’s claims that Saddam Hussein had a WMD capability.”

Brent Scowcroft, who served as National Security Adviser to President to George Bush was an early critic. He wrote an August 15, 2002 editorial in The Wall Street Journal entitled “Don’t attack Saddam,” arguing that the war would distract from the broader fight against terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict which should be the U.S.’s highest priority in the Middle East.  The next month, Gen. Hugh Selton, former Chairman of the Joint Chief’s of Staff, agreed that war in Iraq would distract from the War on Terrorism.

‘Were supposed to believe that the US would’ve invaded Iraq, if it was an island in the Indian Ocean and its main exports were pickles and lettuce.’ Noam Chomsky

Fifty four countries most notably France, Germany, Russia and China, had all protested formally and officially the prosecution of this war. They opposed the Iraq War in principle, citing in some cases that they believe it is illegal, and in others that it required a United Nations mandate.

Today in 2013, Iraq’s infrastructure is a complete mess.  A 2005 study conducted by the UN stated that 84% of the country’s higher education establishments had been either ‘destroyed, damaged or robbed.’  A health care system once admired by the middle-east has been majorly destroyed and looted.

Hundreds of thousands of professional Iraqis and especially the educated middle class have been displaced in countries including Jordan, Syria and Egypt, many after receiving death threats.  Since 2003, the UN’s World Food Program reported 400,000 children are suffering from Malnutrition, specifically in the deficiency of vital protein.  Thousands of Iraqi’s have lost arms and legs, many of which are because of unexploded US cluster bombs , which become like landmines only to be picked up by unsuspecting children.  I’m sure these children don’t mind their legs being blown off in the name of freedom and democracy, do they?

Kofi Annan was in agreement when it was suggested that some Iraqi’s now view the US occupation of their country as leading to poorer living standards than when it was under the rule of Saddam Hussein.

‘I think they are right in the sense of the average Iraqi’s life.  If I were an average Iraqi, obviously I would make the same comparison, that they had a dictator who was brutal but they had their streets, they could go out, their kids could go to school and come back home without a mother or father worrying, am I going to see my child again?

Depleted uranium particles that today still remain in the Iraqi skyline, are breathed into human bodies and passed into the water, soil, the blood and the genes, producing malformed babies.  Research by the BBC in 2004 startlingly revealed the level of birth defects among new born babies was said to be 13 times higher than that in Europe.  A BBC correspondent reported seeing children with severe unexplained brain damage and one newly born child with 3 heads.  Must just be a coincidence, which doesn’t explain officials in the city of Fallujah (Iraq), warning mothers against having children due to the dangers of birth defects.

So to sum it up, there were no weapons of Mass Destruction.  Fifty four countries officially opposed the war as well as the Head of the UN.  Millions of Iraqi’s are displaced throughout the Arab world.  The countries infrastructure is a complete mess, if you are a new born in  Iraq today, you are 13 times more likely to have a heart defect than if you were born anywhere in Europe.  The estimated cost of new oil contracts to foreign companies is going to cost Iraq economy between $74-$194 billion, as opposed to keeping Iraq’s oil revenue within state hands.  America’s Deadliest export so far aside from all the weapons they sell to allies today, enemies tomorrow?  Going to have to go with Democracy on that one.  God Bless you America…

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