Ask a presidential candidate about the people and leaders of Iraq, and they might say something like the following:
Our troops did the job they were asked to do. They got rid of Saddam Hussein. They conducted the search for weapons of mass destruction. They gave the Iraqi people a chance for elections and to have a government. It is the Iraqis who have failed to take advantage of that opportunity.This happens to be Hilary Clinton, but really it could be anybody. I have issues with political dynasties as a expression of this countries sickness, but that can wait for another day.
We need to sit back and look at the facts. As per a study done by researchers from Johns Hopkins published in the Lancet, by July of 2006 nearly 650,000 people have died in Iraq because of the US invasion of their country. Estimates by another polling agency suggest that the numbers may be closer to 1,000,000.
We will get back to these numbers.
Our country and government were not driven by any rational reason to invade this country. They did not constitute a threat to the United States in any way shape or form. There was no reason for the attack. The people of Iraq did not do anything wrong. Hell, they were living in a secular state which supported such absurdities as running water, electricity, public health and education. The country was run by a Very Bad Man, but this is not particularly unusual.
The best argument that we can come up with is that we invaded Iraq for the good of the population.
Back to the numbers.
Assuming that the total count is off by 50%, let us say that the number of needless deaths is around 500,000. Just to give you a tool for understanding how large a number this is, if you lined up that many people side by side (giving everybody 18 inches of space), a line 142 miles long would be created. The distance between San Francisco and Fresno is about 150 miles. Approximately 3000 people were murdered on 9/11. This sickening act seemed to reach out and touch almost everybody that I know and changed the fabric of our society in ways that we are only beginning to understand.
Now imagine the same thing happening every day for 5 years - that is 1825 days for those interested in counting. Now imagine that the social and physical infrastructure that holds our society together has been destroyed almost overnight. No jobs, rule of law, pubic health, sanitation, and not all that much in the way of electricity and running water.
Now give everybody machine guns.
Now import a bunch of wacky theocrats with the sole intention of causing social strife via killing for their own political ends. Mix them with the home grown wacky theocrats for a serious mess.
Do not forget a military presence which does not speak your language and has a bad habit of Blowing Stuff Up. They also the responsible party in the eyes of the populace which adds an element of hilarity as well.
And we sit complaining that the Iraqi people are not taking advantage of the excellent opportunity we have provided to express themselves as a Jeffersonian Democracy. That if they just had a little more gumption there problems would just Go Away. Fucking idiocy so such a degree that my head would explode if I tried to enumerate just how stupid this really is.
Here we go again. Rule of Law. War Crimes. We ignored every notion of Law and international agreement and without cause or justification destroyed a highly modern society killing upwards of a million people in the process. The designers of this tragedy should be set before a War Crimes tribunal and if found guilty spend the remainder of their sad lives rotting in jail.
Instead, Trillions of dollars will be moved from the coffers of Government to those well enough connected to park themselves in front of the trough. Rule of Law. War Crimes.
Crap. There is a growing movement to start this whole mess again with Iran so please contact your congress person and let them know that this is not such a good idea.