We all remember that “Mission Accomplished” was the banner behind then-President Bush as he gloated aboard a US navy ship that the war in Iraq had been won. After his “victory,” however, some 4,000 US military personnel were killed, perhaps a million Iraqis were killed, and the country’s infrastructure and social fabric were so badly destroyed that they probably can never be repaired.
Actually, there is much about the US attack on Syria that reminds us of Iraq.
With Iraq, the US moved in to start bombing before international inspectors had completed their mission to verify whether or not Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. Had they been allowed to complete their mission and verify that he did not, imagine the suffering, death, and destruction that could have been avoided. In Syria, the US decided to start bombing before the international inspectors were even allowed to start checking claims that Assad gassed his own people in Douma. Why? What was the rush? Was Washington afraid they might not find Assad guilty?
Who really benefits from US attacks on the Syrian government? There were reports that ISIS began making moves immediately after the air strikes. Do we really want to be al-Qaeda and ISIS’s airforce? Is that going to keep us safer? I remember when al-Qaeda was actually considered our enemy, not an ally in overthrowing the last secular government in the Middle East.
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