twenty years ago The Iraq War is about to begin. and I’m protesting I joined tens of millions of people around the world in that resistance. Iraq dominated my political life in my early 20s and mid-20s, and this invasion was by far the worst act of George W. Bush’s presidency to be arguably the worst. in American history
For many years I worked in the anti-war movement. Join and organize protests. The anti-imperialist values that I had been raised suddenly turned out to be non-theoretical. It was in the late 2000s, when I gave up the anti-war movement due to burnout and the obvious uselessness of the movement. It left gaps in my schedule and in my senses. In some ways, war was the organizing principle of my youth, and now, 20 years later, few remember—or want.
The conditions that led to the war had disappeared. Although the activated military industrial complex is waiting. The country has moved away from Iraq to the point of being almost completely erased from our political debates.
Gore Vidal, a fierce critic of the war who died in 2012, called our country “the worst country in the world.” “United States Amnesia” and it’s hard to disagree.
Neo-conservatism is not dead yet. But it is far from the epicenter of the torrid culture wars that now set right-wing politics in motion. America’s fixation on the left’s dominant identity raises little concern for foreign policy. The Trumpian dissonance that defines contemporary conservatism extends to war and peace issues.
War cost us at least 3 trillion dollars. Undermined America’s credibility for a generation in most of the world. And conservative-speak killed 600,000 people, and today you can debate politics every day for months without ever bringing it up. It was politically sluggish. In many ways, the war had just… passed.
Perhaps it is worth remembering the context in which the war took place. The past always belonged to different countries. But the difference between the world after 9/11 and today is especially profound.
I think it’s hard to get young people to understand what the atmosphere was like after the attack. Both patriotic mandates Unquestioning militarism The next big attack never happened. Which is the closest cause that we finally moved on. But for many years It’s a matter of when, not if; That we are sure of being attacked again is assumed by all serious people. The lack of evidence for that belief was seen as irrelevant. The question is not whether we need to strengthen our defenses and ourselves. but how to do
Counterterrorism has been a key part of national political elections for over a decade and a half.
The first question of the 2004 presidential debate was about 9/11. Despite Vietnam War veterans, senators voted to authorize military operations in Iraq. John’s campaign Kerry in that contest struggled greatly to match George W. Bush’s public credibility on the issue, Barack Obama’s rival John McCain in the election. The 2008 president made the “war on terror” the centerpiece of his offering. In 2012, Mitt Romney bragged that as president he would “double Guantanamo,” whatever that means.
The fear of terrorism will gradually subside. Gradually and suddenly, it disappeared from politics—in 2020, there was no question of this topic in the presidential debate—but soon. Protecting the country from terrorism immediately is a national passion.
“Iraq didn’t cause 9/11, but it didn’t really matter. They are Arabs and Muslims. And Arab Muslim groups have humiliated the United States.”
Of course, there is another national frenzy: revenge.
If we want to be extra innocent One might ask why the reaction to 9/11 influenced the Iraq War. Because none of the hijackers were Iraqi nationals. and found no connection between Saddam and al-Qaeda. (because no connection was found)
But of course, the national sentiment that not only allowed the invasion of Iraq But also popularizing the mood after 9/11 was the result of an attack that many Americans had no idea of.
Most people are used to walking around feeling that the United States not attacked and not without reason Since the end of the War of 1812, there has not been much attack on the country’s mainland. Both world wars took place far off the shores of America. This makes our country the only major antagonist in both conflicts that has not seen significant destruction within its borders. Conflicts like Vietnam bring unpleasant memories and little shame. But it’s easy to break. The petty skirmishes that took place in the country in the 1980s and ’90s were hardly followed by the majority of citizens. And the first war in Iraq ended in a quick American victory. When the Cold War ended Russia’s nuclear threat is greatly reduced.
Who would dream of attacking American soil? The massacre of 9/11 pierces feelings of invulnerability. and while we mourn righteously The country also mourns America’s vision as a strong bastion. which many consider to be an innate right National support for the invasion of Iraq If we’re being honest It all has to do with that anger.
The war in Afghanistan began successfully. We have no way of knowing if it will stretch to 20 years at that time, but it does give a small belly. The Taliban disintegrated mainly in the mountains and border areas. And most of the fighting is anti-weather. At least compared to the heat of war that burned the country. There was no successful infantry battle that ended with the Americans planting flags on the bodies of their enemies. Osama bin Laden made an awkward escape. Al Qaeda was attacked several times in its first few years. But they were only a small shadow force. That turns out to exploit a specific vulnerability. And it can’t do real damage to the American way of life. We need more camera-ready targets for war. Fortunately for military organizations like Raytheon, and unfortunately for the people of the Middle East. The new conservative Bush inserted into his administration already had an enemy in mind: Iraq.
If you are a proponent of the idea that American foreign policy is primarily driven by the need for access to strategic resources, Hence the huge oil reserves of Iraq. (Some of the largest in the world) should explain enough why we invade. The fact that the United States intervened in Kuwait which is another country with enormous reserves talk about the theory
Some people believe that war is basically a family drama. Because Bush’s father, George H. W. Bush, once fought Saddam. Hussein in the Gulf War and Hussein in return hired an assassin to kill him. There is also the always-ready argument that any conflict prolongs the military-industrial complex and makes defense budgets reasonable. This creates inherent internal pressure for the U.S. military to enter conflict at relatively regular intervals.
All theories are correct. But there is no doubt that war was motivated by a simple and pure desire for revenge. Iraq didn’t cause 9/11, but it didn’t really matter. They are Arabs and Muslims. And Arab Muslim groups have humiliated the United States. They are foreigners of distant cultures who practice extraterrestrial religions. It’s payback time.
“The country has moved away from Iraq to the point of being almost completely erased from our political debates.”
The late Thomas Friedman New York Times Columnist and prominent supporter of aggression say to charlie Rose infamously said “We have to go there. Basically Take out a very large stick in the middle of the world. And burst that bubble…suck this thing! That’s what Charlie is about this war.” Sometimes they come out and say the quiet parts out loud.
Iraq really sucked it. In addition to hundreds of thousands of deaths Millions also fled as Iraqi refugees and civil society were fundamentally destroyed.
But the United States also ended up sucking. The trillions of dollars, thousands of lives, and the vast amounts of public will that we burned “there” are gone forever. Likan in the 2006 midterm elections, our emperor’s hubris. which was overshadowed by the ongoing anti-American riots in the country. It seems to divert more and more attention from the country’s internal problems.
This sentiment was crystallized in the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina. In which Bush died as thousands died on the streets of major American cities, ISIS would later rise on the Iraqi-Syrian border. This can be used in a dictionary to define the types of unintended consequences that are inevitable of the use of military force. Iraqi government in the United States Bloodshed and many treasures remained. It has undergone changes over the years. But now it has entered an unsavory state of massive corruption and petty authoritarianism. (Another consequence of Bush’s wars was that Bush forged a long-standing alliance. Iraq and Iran), sectarian conflicts in the country persist. Most of the refugees never returned. The dead still die
Later, war would be viewed as a serious offence. and many of them are crimes. Over the years, Obama has had a reputation for creating a sense of “normal,” helping to soothe the nation’s conscience. It cannot be said that Donald’s foreign policy views are incoherent. Trump is equal to rejecting neo-conservative ideas. which cannot be said to be representative of all comprehensible philosophy. But his nomination for the 2016 Republican nomination helped prove that anything remained in the neo-conservative movement. used to rule the party, had entered a period of torment
Biden withdrew the remaining American forces from Afghanistan in 2020, after which the Taliban recaptured the country with almost comical speed. There was a lot of clothing ripping about that decision. But the fact that the government collapsed after 20 years of American support Make it clear that staying on will only delay the inevitable. We continue to support the brutal anarchist regime in Saudi Arabia as it threatens Yemen. But most of us satiated this bloodthirsty appetite through the war in Ukraine.
Sometimes it occurs to me that maybe I’m a little proud to oppose the evil war that so many people support. We were right and there are very few arguments these days. But we do not have the power to stop wars or even shorten wars. In the face of a national lust for revenge and a dominance that fuses evangelical Christianity and the faint voices of the apocalyptic to the repeated academic outrages of neocons.
Iraq started out as a Republican win and became a Democratic interest. It strengthens the anti-war perspective and undermines the logic of intervention. Most people seem to want to move on.
I’m sure there will be other wars to resist in my lifetime. and Neocon will rise again but for now America’s military machines are asleep. Somewhere, George W. Bush is painting. And I’m willing to bet his heart won’t have any problems. I can only hope When the next war breaks out Iraq will not be just another part of America’s ancient history.
(tag translation)Iraq War