There have been a number of people who have made a number of comments on the Iraq War, comments with which I, however respectfully, firmly disagree. I really don’t want to create yet again a long, rambling post on the Iraq War, so I will summarize my thoughts.
1. The Iraq War was inevitable. It would have happened at some point. This point cannot be denied, explained away, or ignored.
2. It is true there is much we did not know before we went in. But the same applies to every armed operation that anyone undertakes. Using hindsight to judge a decision made with limited information is ridiculous. And, for that matter, our information today remains incomplete and limited.
3. The Iraq War was not fought for the armed forces of The United States to conquer and administrate Iraq but rather to overthrow Saddam Hussein’s regime and assist Iraqi authorities in establishing a viable state. Issues such as wiping out the insurgency, internal rivalries, number of troops, and so on, should be seen keeping this point in mind.
4. There is no insurgency. An insurgency connotes a popular rebellion against an unwanted authority. The violence of Iraq is due to inter-ethnic and inter-religious rivalries (which have existed for a very long time, and which certain elements have been trying to increase) and to foreign forces and involvement. There is no popular revolt against any authority. That Iraqis are unhappy with occupying forces can be understandable (I have yet to see any reliable report on what Iraqis, in general and specifically according to demographics, feel about Coalition forces), why they would be targetting their own people is beyond me. We focus on American casualties, but let is not forget the many Iraqis who have been killed by forces under foreign orders.
5. In addition to preventing the proliferation of WMDs, the development of military nuclear technology, and any working link between terrorists and Saddam Hussein’s regime, there are a number of equally valid and vital reasons to have liberated Iraq. This was not and must never be seen as a single-issue conflict.
6. The United States did the best it could and continues to do the best it can. To cast aspirations of arrogance or stupidity is absolutely and utterly unacceptable.
(I strongly condemn the words of Alberto Fernandez to al-Jazeerah: he spoke his own opinion and not the thinking of any entity affiliated with The Government, and I am very, very upset with him for his arrogance and stupidity. More to come on this issue.)
7. The Iraq War was necessary in order to establish deterrence for opposing The United States, especially in the case of armed opposition. Consider that The United States had been attacked not too long before the liberation of Iraq and that The United States were seen as weak even then. An act was needed, among other reasons, to establish that The United States will protect their interests no matter who says what. (And as a sovereign state, this is our indisputable right. Sovereign states have, since the beginning, moved against other sovereign states when one threatens the interests and security of the other. To deny this is to deny us one of the fundamental rules of human society.) Furthermore, this act was needed in order to establish that The United States will keep its interests and security above diplomatic hindrances and games and above international regimes such as The United Nations.
If, for some quite odd reason, someone wants a long, rambling post on the Iraq War, I will not mind obliging. Just that enough people are talking about it, and I don’t want to unnecessarily add to the avalanche of statements.
Update: Clarified the insurgency point, and added point 7.