Pre-emtive failure

Results of US invasion of Iraq


Pre-emtive failure
by Jahanshah Rashidian

Iraq was occupied by the US-led troops from March 20 to May 1, 2003. Five years have passed since the Bush administration launched the war on terror beginning with the campaign entitled "Operation Iraqi Freedom" to topple the Saddam regime in Iraq. Yet the panoramic picture of Iraq continues to remain in a sombre situation. The US was yet to reach its target to “disarm” Saddam Hussein’s regime of weapons of mass destruction in the fight against “terrorism”, but nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons were never found in Iraq after the military occupation.

Iraq war is the most expensive in terms of human and material costs in the US history after the Vietnam War. The official statistics released by the US Congressional Budget Office on December 4, the administration had spent some US $350 billion for military operation in Iraq. Recently, the US Congress approved an additional amount of US $70 billion for the war against terrorism, in which US $50 billion is to be reserved for the war in Iraq. In the next few months, the administration is expected to ask the Congress to gear another US $127 billion for the purpose. This shows that the war in the Iraq has cost the US over US $500 billion in three and a half years, equivalent to the 15-year war in Vietnam from 1960 to 1975. It is noticeable that the expenses for the Iraq war rose year after year from an average of US $217 million per day in the first days of the war to the current amount of US $267 million per day.

According to the estimates by Prof. Joseph E. Stiglitz from the Columbia University, Nobel Prize winner in economics of the year 2001, and Congressman Lee Hamilton, the actual spending for the war in Iraq could reach US $1,000-1,500 billion, accounting for one tenth of the US GDP and ten times higher than the initial estimate. They said that the costs for this war should include all indirect expenses such as health care for war invalids and sick soldiers, compensations for families of dead soldiers, social insurance for all those participating in the war and others.

A report released by the Pentagon on December 18 said that the war had killed 3,195 of coalition troops including 2.984 from the US and injured over 25,000 others. Military experts believed that the US casualties could be much higher. The Pentagon only mentioned those troops killed in action without taking into account the deaths during emergency services and in hospitals. It is estimated that this number should account for 16-30% in the past wars. As a result, the total of US soldiers killed in Iraq should have reached over 8,000, much higher than the war against Vietnam—recent reports talk from about 4000 US deaths.

Despite increasing losses and expenses, it is still far for the US to reach its targets in Iraq. Many people have hoped that following the elections on December 2005, the establishment of an official government on April 2006 together with the killing of Al-Queda leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi on June 2006, the situation Iraq would be improved. However what is developing in Iraq has gone beyond the US expectation. Iraq is falling in a chaotic situation and the sectarian and religious conflicts are pushing the country in the whirl of bloody violence. In an interview with the BBC, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan criticised the US-led war in Iraq was illegal, saying that “the level of violence in Iraq was ‘much worse’ than that of a civil war.”

A report completed by the Iraq Study Group under the US Congress said that as many as 750,000 Iraqi people had been killed and another 1, 3 million were forced to leave their country since the US launched the war in 2003. In fact, Iraq is being divided into three regions: the south dominated by the Shiites, the central part by the Sunnis and the north by the Kurds. The US forces failed to ensure security and daily minimal needs for the Iraqi people, let alone the efforts of national reconstruction.

The increasing problems in Iraq are affecting in the US itself and creating outstanding changes in the face of the region and the world at large. There are more and more critics against the US war in Iraq, marked by the resignations of Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld and Ambassador John R. Bolton, Permanent US Representative to the United Nations and recently the commander of US forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, Admiral William Fallon. President Bush’s prestige reduced to the lowest level since he was elected president in 2001, leading to the defeat of the Republicans during the mid-term congressional elections in November, President Bush had to propose ISG that comprises the representatives from both the Democratic Party and the Republican Party led by James Baker, former Secretary of State (Republican), and Lee Hamilton, US congressman (Democrat) find a way out of the deadlock situation in Iraq.

As having got bogged down in Iraq, it is difficult for the US to open the second front against the Islamic Republic of Iran which is the main sponsor of terrorism and it has failed to bring pressure to bear on the regime concerning their bilateral conflicts. The US knows but ignores the fact the IRI is formed from a group of Islamist thugs, masquerading as a state which is responsible for the main problems of the region. The invasion of Iraq unburden the West to seriously consider the criminal background and the constant violations of human rights of this regime, so the regime became the chance not only to further repress its people, but also to interfere in Iraq, Lebanon, and Israel-Palestine conflict. With a huge military potential, the IRI is emerging as a power in the region. Bush’s opponent in the US pressurised his administration to make “grand bargain” with the Mullah’s regime and Syria to help stabilise the security in Iraq.

The US invasion coincided with an escalation of violence and islamisation in the region. Islamists groups like Hamas in Palestine and Hezbollah in Lebanon became significant forces. Many analysts said that the US-led coalition against terrorism is facing the danger of disintegration. So far, over 20 countries, including those actively supporting the war in Iraq namely Spain, Canada, Japan and Italy, have withdrawn their troops from Iraq. Meanwhile, China, Russia and EU focused on development with the IRI, emerging as the new strength to possibly threaten the superpower status of the US.

The development of the US-led wars in Iraq proved the failure of the “pre-emptive theory” in the anti-terrorist war. Its powerful military strength could destroy other countries’ infrastructure in a short time, but Washington found it impossible to control and stabilise the security situation. Regarding this issue, former National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger and new Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates assessed that “the US would not gain a military victory in Iraq.” On December 6, British Prime Minister Tony Blair, the strongest supporter for the US war in Iraq, also admitted that “the war in Iraq was a "disaster" and was developing in a wrong trend and the US would not be able to win in Iraq.”

Iraq is now overshadowed by sectarian violence and lack of any stability, US troops pretend to do a necessary job for disarming militia groups, persuading all the political and sectarian and religious groups in Iraq to achieve a charter on national reconciliation. It is not an easy decision for the US to withdraw all 155,000 troops from Iraq at this time, but it is thinking about reducing the combat troops and shifting to positive diplomatic activities to improve the situation. The US administration is also undertaking the contacts and dialogues with resistance groups in Iraq including members of the former ruling Baath party.

The Middle East situation continues to be tense. Violence is still spreading in Iraq and the country is facing the danger of a civil war. The Palestine-Israel conflict is being landed in a cul-de-sac because it has yet to find a way out. The situation in Lebanon and the nuclear issue in Iran are still latent with a possible breaking out. Under such circumstances, it is extremely difficult to find the solutions to all the issues for the whole region. Therefore, it is necessary for all the concerned parties to make greater efforts to step by step establish a real and lasting peace, democracy and stability in the Middle East.


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Your responses are "boiler plates" !!! (To: Rashidian)

by Asghar Geda (not verified) on

Mr Rashidian,
You really don't need to respond unless you have something different from your usual "boiler plates". In particular you need to respond to the issues raised in the comments DIRECTLY. My comments and questions were directed at "Kamangir" and then to "anonym". The comment I had directly for you did not say "you are anti islam" or "pro Islam" -- please read them again. You constantly defend yourself on those isssues in your responses, whether are related to questions and discussions or not -- therefore your "boiler plates". Whether you believe in God or not, or in any religion is really your business and not ours. Your principles in the writings are not "sound". My question and comment at you pointed out to some of the faults in your principles and pointed out at mistakes in your argument. In short, it said that you cannot ignore the history and reset yourself for a new era. History is part of our lives. As they say: "History is the best teacher". For example, when you are surprised of "Islamization of the region" you need to dig a bit deeper and ask why it may make sense? Why the mollahs in spite of their mistakes are "more" successful in the region (in terms of winning hearts and minds of people in the region), than American "bombs", and/or CIA trickery? These are the issues that makes "islamization" more acceptable in the region -- perhaps. These are for you to ponder about.



Jahanshah Rashidian

Mrs. Ali Kababi, Asghar, Kamangir

by Jahanshah Rashidian on

Thanks for your comments!

No, I do not accept any war in the Middle East, including an attack on Iran. And this is actually the core essence of this article tackled here with the US invasion of Iraq.

I do not care about Michael Ledeen or any other. I reject what reject able is, independently from their interrelations, quite contrary to Michael Ledeen who oscillates between US and Israeli interests, or even between Democrat and Republican parties, I have no such Machiavellian ambitions to gain a political agenda. Courage and honesty are my favourite methods.

Once again, I have no religion, but am not Islamophobic. I respect all Muslims while rejecting Islamism, which is also their main problem. I see this ideology (Islamism) further devastating my country and the region which is also marked by a colonial past and lurked by a present greedy neuliberalism. If Islam, with wonder, promotes into a private religion the region, and to some extent the Islamic world, can incarnate an era of Renaissance. The region needs renaissance men and women, Muslim or not, to achieve this necessary goal. For me , this stage is the periority we have among others.



Jahanshah Rashidian

R: Hasfarr

by Jahanshah Rashidian on

I agree with you that the US invasion aggravated the situation in sum. The invasion was a cow-boy-foreign policy of neucons. Saddam's regime, like the IRI or any dictatorship, should be confronted under UN mandated pressure with the help and engagement of human rights organisations and the international community.

I would also vote for your favourite presidential candidates in US if I were to vote. Let's confirm this choice by saying that in Germany (my country), based on some newspaper's statistics, Obama would be elected as President!

Thanks for your participation in the debate.



Re: Not a real mistake! (by Kamangir)

by AB2 (not verified) on

That article was written, I would guess, in 2005 or may be in 2004. Many of the issues he discusses in that article have already materialized and/or are underway. Iran (and most other oil prodcers) are shifting to Euro, so has China. In 2005, Euor was about $1.20, today is $1.50+ and rising. Therefore what the article defines as "dooms day" is already occuring. Wait for the next shoe to drop!


Re: do you want another war? (by Anonym7)

by Ali Kababi (not verified) on

You are wrong about the sequence with regards to M. Ladeen. Here is why: Michael Ledeen pushed for war with Iraq as the first target (don't forget that he is an israeli spy and a stooge planted by israelis in the US Government). But after "iraq" was presumably "finished" (i.e., saddam was gone), he then said, "we should have gone to Iran first". Not that he wanted to go to Iran first, because that would have been almost impossible to push at the time, but because Iraq was an easier target to go to first and then say "we should have gone to iran first"!!! This argument was plausible according to Ladeen because after "short war and a quick victory" in Iraq, it will be easy to push for Iran's destruction. In fact he is pushing the Israeli agenda of destroying the entire ME and turning that entire region into "stone age", which is precisely what is done to Iraq.. That strategy according to Ladeen is the only way that Israelis can rule the entire ME (ultimate goal). In other words, their strategy is "destroy and turn that entire region into stone age". That is when "helpless people will accept Isralei rule". Otherwise, middle easterners in spite of all the problems and difficulties that they may have with their governments (including those in iran), are not going to give in to a bunch of blood sucking, gun toating creatures from Tel Aviv.



Islamization of the Region ???

by Asghar Geda (not verified) on

Mr Rashidian,
What have you been smoking? In 1953, democracy found its way into iran by our beloved and publically elected Dr. Mosadegh. Then bunch of thugs (with roots in US Government) overthrew that democracy and brought misery and dispare to Iran and in fact to the entire region. Since that time, status quo in the middle east has been killing and destruction by foriegn elements who were imposed on the region -- from arab kings and queens to blood suckers in tel aviv . People in the region are tired of killing and destruction by bunch of blood sucking creatures who have occupied parts of the ME and impose their will on hundreds of millions. They want to control their own destiny as any human wants to. Therefore, before you can talk about "islamization of the region" and why that may be necessary, you need in your prognosis to first look at the sources of misery and dispare. Otherwise, what is the difference between your analysis (presumably an educated person) and that of a cab driver in Tehran?



Not a real mistake!

by Kamangir on

I have never believed that some of the things done by the US in Iraq were real mistakes, even they seem to be negligences or mistakes.  I think that the long run plan for that region was and is reshaping it totally, into new areas. This has to do with known peak oil era and world economics. To do so, some countries have to be desintegrated, into new countries. A new Kurdistan, a new region which includes Iranian  khuzestan and most southern and south-eastern Iraq. To do all this, civil wars and total caos was needed in Iraq. For obvious reasons , those who planned the invasion, cannot go live and tell the world they long-term plans. They had to make up the mediocre weapons story and case for Iraq, they had to invent Al-Qeda and they have to go after Iran's nuclear plans. The US could have done, much, much better in Iraq but again, this was not a mistake. They can get rid of the IRI quite easily, 'without' war, but still, a very dangerous and risky war has been planned for Iran as well. Only in caos, countries can be re-shaped, re-designed.  Please, also note, that so far many US military commanders have been against many decisions taken by the current administration, mainly because they knew and know the consequences, but again, everyhing is about securing world's most available oild resources, keeping it from China among others. Iran is and will be their next stop. Please refer to the very interesting artice written by Clark:





do you want another war?

by Anonym7 (not verified) on

JR says: "As having got bogged down in Iraq, it is difficult for the US to open the second front against the Islamic Republic of Iran which is the main sponsor of terrorism and it has failed to bring pressure to bear on the regime concerning their bilateral conflicts."

JR, you are either sending mixed signals here or you accidentally disclosed your real desire. Your words here are almost copy of neocon Michael Ledeen who is upset that US did not attack Iran instead of Iraq!


Those jerks!

by Hasfarr on

I am just a kid, and I still think this could ruin the world. First, it was because of Saddam Hussein, who is dead, now they're still fighting! They wanted to get rid of Hussein, but they think the only place to fight Al-Qaeda is in Iraq! Bush is a dummy, and I don't want another dummy to be the president.

Vote Obama or Clinton 08!