A year ago the air strikes began on Baghdad.
Their mission: to remove Saddam Hussein from power and disarm Iraq of its Weapons of Mass Destruction.
One year on – Saddam’s in an American jail, Iraq’s war after the war continues and WMDs are yet to be found.
Has your view of the war changed in the past 12 months?
No, my view on the war on Iraq hasn’t changed. I thought the war on Iraq was justified back then and I’ve heard or seen nothing since then to make me change my mind. Okay so no WMD were found, Tony Blair might be more embarrassed by that than George Bush, as the Americans always stated that “regime change” was the main order of the day. – And that’s what they did! So I don’t have a problem with that. I can’t say I agree 100% with all the facets of the war, but on the whole I do think that it was justified, both back in March 2003 when it commenced and now one year on.
A year after, the war’s purpose still remain unclear. They caught Sadam, which was also a plan but that’s it.
No weapons have been found ( don’t forget WMD were the main reason for going into a war ), casualties are rising daily, there is a huge unemployment amongst Iraqis, which they also have no proper health care, education and social security. They are in worse ethnic chaos, which won’t be solved any soon ( take Serbia and Kosovo for example ). Most of the Iraqis want the U.S. soldiers to leave Iraq sooner rather than later.
International terrorism inside and outside Iraq has increased and now threatens the whole world.
Sorry, but I just can’t find many positive results of this war.
No my view over the year hasn’t changed.
The timing wasn’t justified then and still hasn’t been since, in fact there seems less justification now to have gone to war than there did a year ago!
I’m still puzzled as to the timing.
I’m still angry that the world didn’t help the Iraqis overthrow Saddam in 1991 when he was on his last legs. But hindsight’s an exact science. The irony is that the official reason for that pull out was that the UN mandate didn’t permit regime change, just his army’s expulsion from Kuwait!
I often read the dear_raed.com blog. There’s an email there from a US soldier asking “would you rather we hadn’t come where we didn’t want to, and just left Saddam in place” and Salam Pax’s response which is that no, they are glad Saddam is gone (altho’ 91 would have been far better obviously), and that they must now not just leave as elections loom in the western countries and the war coffers begin to take their toll – or civil war and total chaos looms. He also talks of the humiliation that Iraqis feel that they couldn’t really achieve Saddam’s overthrow by themselves. The US hyperpower doesn’t ‘do’ peace very well, to put it mildly, and expectations after the war haven’t been met, as Tanya says above. It’s a mess, but I still think that with extremely hard work, and a bit more action from a hopefully stronger UN, some sort of better life can be achieved in the future in a federal type Iraq – but it won’t be the cute US friendly Iraq the Americans wanted. I would like to commend the extreme bravery of those who join the Iraqi police or work in NGOs to try to help the ordinary Iraqi people.
In my view, that’s what it’s about from here on in – the ordinary Iraqis’ rebuilding their lives and their country; never mind the misleading info/lies about WMD. I get upset when people protest against the war when they were silent during Saddam’s reign of terror; silent when Iraqi refugees were deported from the UK to face death in Saddam’s Iraq; silent after Halabjah and the gassing of the Kurds; and when they carry anti war banners which say “Bush: your war, our dead” as they did in Rome (ie only care because their countrymen are dying, not the Iraqis).
Having said that, I think the next decade for Iraq is going to be extremely tough and violent and I feel a profound sadness. I think war is sanitised on TV to prevent us from realising what an incredibly terrible thing it is.