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Bush’s greatest victory
Iraq: Mission accomplished, indeed


October 19, 2006

I lived in San Diego when on that fateful morning the President of the United States flew into town, donned a flight suit and helmet and landed in a Lockheed S-3 Viking on the deck of USS Abraham Lincoln to announce to the world that "in the battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed.”

He did not fly out to the naval carrier in a helicopter, as is the norm, even though the ship was actually within helicopter range when he arrived. He also took the control stick for part of the flight just to add to the day’s drama. This was now officially a “show”.

However, even the fact that the Lincoln and its anxious sailors waited offshore for hours while the president slept after his speech rather than heading into port after its 10-month voyage did not make as much noise as the banner the White House had prepared and was hung by the ship personnel to complete the photo op. It simply read “Mission Accomplished” and although the administration originally denied even knowledge of its existence, now Bush’s deputy war chief Donald Rumsfeld has confirmed that even the words were taken right out of president’s speech for the day before Rumsfeld decided to remove them at last minute.

After all it was only May 1, 2003 and a short 40 plus days into the undertaking to free and rebuild Iraq, bring democracy to the region and win the war on terror at its most pressing battle front. With those lofty ambitions, it seemed rather premature then and still does today to consider the fall of Saddam’s shaky regime as the sole measure of the mission’s success.

Nevertheless and a couple of years later, many of this administration’s most staunch critics would agree that the illegal and immoral invasion of Iraq has indeed been the most successful accomplishment of the Bush administration. Did that surprise you? Let me repeat: illegal and immoral invasion of Iraq is and will be seen as the most successful accomplishment of the Bush administration, particularly by its most passionate adversaries.

Successful indeed providing you set aside the dubious claims made for its justification by the administration. If you do, then you will see that it has in fact accomplished much of what its architects had in mind when they designed it years before 9/11 or even having a patsy in control of the oval office. In a rather short three and a half years this administration has removed a fundamental potential threat to Israel’s security, engaging Iraq in an internal conflict where the potential foreign adversary is easily ignored or even forgotten.

It has also created a long-term base for the presence of U.S. military in the middle-east, demonstrated by building of several permanent facilities to house thousands of soldiers for many years to come.

Some may argue that the invasion has in fact solidified the position of Iran in the region, but even they perhaps omit how is that really against the interest of the United States? The current regime in Iran has acted as the perfect bogeyman for its supposed adversaries over a quarter of a century now, without much actual harm imposed on either side. In fact, in various times (October surprise, Iran-Contra affair, Iran-gate, purchase of Israeli arms during the war and many more), the Islamic Republic of Iran has collaborated with these same “enemies” while they in turn have closed their eyes on vulgar and abhorrent violation of Iranian people’s most basic rights.

I may be naïve but I do not remember a threat of U.S. military strikes when each evening hundreds of mostly teenagers were executed by this regime in 1981. I also do not remember Security Council mulling over extended new package of sanctions when thousands had their earlier convictions ignored to face firing squads in the summer of 1987. Israel may be upset when it hears any talk of being “wiped off” but had no problems arming the same regime while many Jewish and Baha’i Iranians were actually being wiped off, as close to a million more were paying the ultimate price in an unjust and unnecessary war.

Now, a stronger Iran will potentially create yet another regional conflict between the mostly Arab, mostly Sunni countries of the region against the powerful new Shiite alliance that could perhaps stretch from Afghanistan to the East, Lebanon to West, Azerbaijan to North and Oman to South. What a blessing would that be for the state of Israel and its primary supporters in Washington, don’t you think?

If you still doubt Iraq has been the greatest victory of Bush and company, go back and read what some of us saw as the REAL reasons behind this atrocity and you may agree that loss of 600,000 + Iraqi lives have been a small price to pay for the greatest victory the Neo-Conservatives could have ever dreamt of.

They have indeed succeeded in accomplishing much of their mission, the rest is left for us to decide how we wish to weather it. Comment

Pedram Moallemian is a Canadian-Iranian activist, writer and blogger currently based in California. A former political prisoner of the current Iranian government, he blogs at and his first book on 1979 Iranian revolution will be published soon.


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