On This Day, Mar 19, 2003 – War in Iraq Begins

On this day in 2003, the United States, along with coalition forces primarily from the United Kingdom, initiates war on Iraq. Just after explosions began to rock Baghdad, Iraq’s capital, U.S. President George W. Bush announced in a televised address, “At this hour, American and coalition forces are in the early stages of military operations to disarm Iraq, to free its people and to defend the world from grave danger.” President Bush and his advisors built much of their case for war on the idea that Iraq, under dictator Saddam Hussein, possessed or was in the process of building weapons of mass destruction. Hostilities began about 90 minutes after the U.S.-imposed deadline for Saddam Hussein to leave Iraq or face war passed. The first targets, which Bush said were “of military importance,” were hit with Tomahawk cruise missiles from U.S. fighter-bombers and warships stationed in the Persian Gulf. In...

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Saddam Hussein Was Not ‘Worth Removing From Power’: Ex-CIA Agent

by Nadia Prupis – New memoir details institutional failings that led to catastrophic invasion of Iraq and rise of Islamic State. A former CIA analyst who personally interrogated Saddam Hussein said the U.S. “got it so wrong” on the invasion of Iraq and should have left the now-deceased leader in power. In an excerpt from a memoir about his time with the agency, Debriefing the President: The Interrogation of Saddam Hussein, former analyst John Nixon—who was the first officer to question Hussein after his capture in December 2003—writes that the Ba’athist president was not “worth removing from power,” and that the decision to do so needs to be viewed in the context of what came next: the rise of the Islamic State (ISIS). Nixon writes: Today, a decade following Saddam’s execution, with ISIS’s black flags still unfurled over sections of Iraq, we need to ask ourselves some provocative questions. One of...

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Army General And Bush Secretary: The Truth About The War On Terror Is Grotesque

by Sophie McAdam – In this rare video, two high-ranking Bush Administration officials reveal the terrible truth about 9/11, Iraq, and all the other countries the West has invaded since then… This video could help destroy any lingering illusions that the chaos currently engulfing the Middle East is just a tragic twist of fate. According to retired US Army General Wesley Clark and Former Bush Secretary-Treasurer Paul O’Neil, this endless ‘War on Terror’ was planned at least one year before 9/11– and possibly as far back as 1991. In a buried 2004 60 minutes interview, O’ Neil reveals: At George W Bush‘s first ever security council (which took place just ten days after his inauguration), getting rid of Saddam Hussein was top of the agenda. This means the Neo-cons were plotting to overthrow the Iraqi President eight months before 9/11. No questions were asked about why Saddam was targeted. Instead, Bush told the council:...

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GOP Kingmaker Romney Flip-Flops on His Iraq War Support

by Jon Perr – At this fourth annual E2 Summit this week, defeated 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney once again played host to the GOP’s White House hopefuls and their sugar daddies. As before, Romney’s twin objectives were to play kingmaker and to remind the assembled Republican faithful that he’s still available to be king. But in addressing the crowd (accompanied as always by his constant companion, the PowerPoint presentation), Mitt Romney also reminded voters why they rejected him twice already. In yet another gymnastic flip-flop, Mitt version 2016 called the Iraq war a “mistake,” the same conflict about which Mitt v. 2008 declared, “I supported it at the time; I support it now.”At this Utah resort conclave, Philip Rucker and Robert Costa reported for the Washington Post, Romney delivered a “brutal PowerPoint critique of Obama’s foreign policy.” Updating his 2008 strategy presentation which announced “Hillary=France,” Romney mocked the 2016 Democratic front-runner...

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Former Iraqi Deputy PM Tariq Aziz Dies in Prison (VIDEO)

Aziz, who was Saddam’s deputy PM and foreign minister, surrendered to US forces in 2003 and had been a prisoner since Tariq Aziz, Iraq’s former deputy prime minister and foreign minister, has died in prison aged 79 years old. Iraqi officials said Aziz, who was one of the former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein’s top deputies, died on Friday afternoon after suffering a heart attack on Thursday. Al Jazeera has learnt that Aziz’s son, Ziad, expressed outrage that Iraqi officials had not informed him of his father’s death, and he had instead found out through local media reports. Aziz was Iraq’s foreign minister between 1983 and 1991 and deputy prime minister between 1979 and 2003. Born Mikhail Yuhanna in 1936, Aziz was the highest ranking Christian official under Saddam’s presidency and a member of the former ruling Baath Party’s inner circle. He was sentenced to death by the Iraqi High Tribunal...

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Why Jeb Bush Can’t Be Trusted With an Army

by Jacob Sullum – His reluctance to criticize his brother’s war reflects a dangerous desire to forget the past According to researchers at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies, the war in Iraq that George W. Bush started in 2003 has killed about 200,000 people, mostly civilians, and cost American taxpayers more than $2 trillion. That’s a pretty big mistake to admit, so it’s not surprising that Bush continues to defend the war. Nor is it surprising that the former president’s brother, Jeb Bush, would be reluctant to criticize the Iraq debacle. But while that reticence is understandable for a brother, it is inexcusable for a presidential candidate, who is seeking a job that would put him in a position to make such disastrous mistakes. Over the course of four days last week, the former Florida governor took four distinct positions on the Iraq war. On Monday he said he would...

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Delusional Tom Cotton: Iraq War Made The World Safer

By  STEPHEN D FOSTER JR, Addicting Info – Republican Senator Tom Cotton, the fool who embarrassed himself and his party by writing a letter to Iran to sabotage nuclear talks, says former President George W. Bush made the best decision using the best intelligence when he invaded Iraq in 2003. In an interview with the Washington Examiner, the Arkansas Republican said that Americans shouldn’t be ashamed of the Iraq war because it ousted Saddam Hussein from power and made the world safer. “You don’t get to live life in reverse,” Cotton said before adding that Bush made the best decision possible using the intelligence he had. “What a leader has to do is make a decision, at the moment of decision, based on the best information he has. George Bush did that in 2002 and 2003 and he was supported by Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden and John Kerry and every...

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Asked by Veteran to Apologize for Horrors of Iraq War, Karl Rove Says No (VIDEO)

‘I’m not going to apologize for our government having done the right thing by having removed Saddam Hussein from power,’ Rove insists by Deirdre Fulton – Karl Rove may be a lot of things, but being sorry for the 2003 invasion of Iraq is not one of them. A 32-year-old Iraq war veteran confronted Rove at the University of Connecticut this week, calling on the former senior advisor to President George W. Bush to apologize for the horrors of that war and its lingering effects both at home and abroad. “I’ve taken responsibility for my actions and dealt with my demons while advocating for a peaceful resolution for a war that was an act of aggression with no clear goal,” said Ryan Hemowitz, who said he served as a medic with the 2nd Battalion of the 7th Infantry Regiment, at an event sponsored by the UConn College Republicans. “Can you take...

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Intervention in the Islamic State Increasingly Messy

by Richard Sale, Truthout | News Analysis – Seemingly out of nowhere, the Islamic State last summer invaded and captured territories in Iraq from its bases in Syria, thereby posing the greatest threat to the post-1919 borders of the lands of ancient Mesopotamia. Soon, the United States and world media were bombarded with graphic images of beheadings, executions, crucifixions, and a current of horror spreading through the West. As the Islamic State (IS) gained power, it began to wage total war. The great French historian Albert Sorel said, “War and pity do not go together.” (1) Watching the IS campaigns, we are reminded of the Seven Years War, the first global war, a war of endless atrocity. One contemporary witness said the carnage resembled the invasion of the Huns, where he found “hanged people after their noses and ears were cut off, their limbs torn away, their entrails and...

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ISIS – ‘What Reagan Would Do’

By Jon Perr, Daily Kos – American hostages have been brutally murdered by terrorists in the Middle East. Other Western captives may suffer the same fate at the hands of the Islamic State. In response, President Barack Obama’s opponents are doing what they always do when the going gets tough for the United States: ask WWRD? In “What Would Reagan Do,” CNN Crossfire host Newt Gingrich penned an imaginary speech that a mythical version of the Gipper would deliver to the nation about the threat from ISIS. Over at the Washington Times, Gayle Trotter used the same gambit, inventing a Reaganesque address announcing military strikes to make the point that “Americans expect their president to vindicate the victims of terrorism.” Meanwhile, Breitbart News even interviewed President Reagan’s former National Security Adviser Robert “Bud” McFarlane to provide a lecture about “peace through strength.” Unfortunately for the Gipper’s hagiographers, we know exactly...

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On This Day, Aug 7,1990 – Bush Orders Operation Desert Shield

On this day in 1990, President George Herbert Walker Bush orders the organization of Operation Desert Shield in response to Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait on August 2. The order prepared American troops to become part of an international coalition in the war against Iraq that would be launched as Operation Desert Storm in January 1991. To support Operation Desert Shield, Bush authorized a dramatic increase in U.S. troops and resources in the Persian Gulf. Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein and hard-line Iraqi nationalists had always believed Kuwait should be part of Iraq, but nationalist propaganda aside, acquiring control of Kuwait’s oil fields was Hussein’s primary interest. In addition, control of Kuwait represented a strategic military objective should Iraq be forced into a war with its western-friendly Arab neighbors. Hussein calculated incorrectly that the United States and the United Nations, who were closely tracking Iraq’s military buildup along Kuwait’s borders, would...

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John McCain says if he had been president there might not have been an Iraq War

by Hunter – Uh-huh. Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, made a surprising suggestion Thursday night: If he had been elected in 2000, there might not have been a war in Iraq. Given the vigor with which John McCain regularly finds a television camera to inform us who should be bombed or who should be supplied with arms he will have to forgive us for being skeptical on that point. “If presented with that same evidence today, I would vote the same way,” McCain said of his vote to deploy troops in the country. “I respected and trusted the Secretary of State, Colin Powell. But it’s obvious now, in retrospect, that Saddam Hussein – although he had used weapons of mass destruction – did not have the inventory that we seem to have evidence of. Which now looking back on it, with the benefit of hindsight, (the evidence) was very flimsy.” It...

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All the Things Hillary Clinton’s Book Doesn’t Say About Iraq

Ignores or glosses over State Department responsibility for the country’s security assistance by Jeff Gerth, ProPublica – Having co-authored a 2007 biography of Hillary Clinton, I know that Iraq is not one of her favorite subjects. But with the bloodshed and sectarian division now crippling Iraq, I wondered what her new memoir, “Hard Choices,” had to say about a country that’s long been a political minefield for her. The answer is not a lot. There is no chapter on its own for Iraq, like there is for Gaza, or Burma or Haiti. The discussion of Iraq is scattered throughout the 632-page book, and it is mostly about old battles. Clinton does not delve into the challenges she faced as secretary of state in 2011 as her department inherited responsibility for Iraq’s security assistance when American troops withdrew. Instead, the book has made headlines for her admission, for the first time in...

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