David Mixner | Iraq | News

Iraq: It Was Only a Matter Of Time



Americans are reacting in shock this week to the rapid advance of the march toward Baghdad of the extremely radical Islamic ISIS militia. The group makes the old Taliban of Afghanistan look moderate. As the fringe group takes city after city, they are killing, raping and burning the homes of average Iraqi citizens.

Really there should be no shock about the emergence of ISIS in both Syria and Iraq.

The current situation has been an inevitability since Bush/Cheney took us to war in Iraq. The American invasion and occupation ensure that the more militants elements would pour into the country to fight once again the infidels from the West. America's insistence that a 'democratic form' of government was essential in the nation guaranteed that the Shiites would totally exclude the Sunnis from government, setting the stage for the current situation.

When will the United States (and for that matter most of the Western world) realize that the situation in the 'Islamic Arc' from Syria to Pakistan cannot be controlled by Western ideas, troops, or money? Every time in history we have attempted to impose our values, geographic boundaries and forms of government in this region it has only made the situation worse.

If anyone believes that we will leave a stable and democratic government behind in Afghanistan, I have a bridge to sell you in Brooklyn. As we used to say back home, 'that simply ain't gonna happen'.

After our trillion dollar spend, ten years of warfare, more than 8,000 Americans killed and tens of thousands of American soldiers left with severe physical and mental injuries, we are faced with this crisis.

Can someone please explain to the American people exactly what we accomplished?

There will be those who blame our President who is keeping his word (yes, keeping his word!) to the American people by bringing our troops home from these loser wars. If the sun comes up in the east they blame him. There are also interventionists who actually believe if we continue to occupy Iraq and Afghanistan some splendid new day of democracy will eventually emerge from those nations.

What have they been smoking and what history books have they been reading?

Post_war_iraqThe existing boundaries of the current Islamic-dominated states in the Middle East were set by oil companies after World War I. They were divided up based on resources and now historical tribal or faith based areas. Fake monarchies were put in place and we proceeded to take their natural resources to fuel our economies. When the monarchies collapsed we supported military dictatorships including that of Iraq's Saddam Hussein and Syria's Basher al-Assad. In fact, we were the main backers of the Taliban in Afghanistan when they were opposing the Russian occupation.

Now the cries will arise to "Save Iraq' and the voices of war will once again emerge from the hawks. Demands will be made to bomb ISIS strong holds as if we can put off the inevitable. Some will demand that we send troops once again into the war torn nation.

Americans have been taken to war in the past based on lies and distortions. We cannot save democracy in Iraq. This is for the Iraqi people to solve for better or worse. The time of dictating their future is over.

We better have those helicopters ready to evacuate Americans from Baghdad because I believe they might be needed sooner rather than later.

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  1. I guess the $2 Trillion dollars we spent there already was not enough. Where is the rest of the world on this??? Do they even want us back??????

    Posted by: Tom | Jun 12, 2014 2:30:06 PM

  2. The Middle East is really nuts. I feel sorry for Israel surrounded by all these crazies.

    Posted by: Peter-Nicholas | Jun 12, 2014 2:39:00 PM

  3. To David Mixner...thanks for a brilliant, well researched and thought out opinion piece. However, Brush-Cheney, McCain and all the GOP hawks will never take responsibility for the residual emerging chaos in Iraq. As Gen. Colin Powell prophetically warned George W. Bush and Donald Rumsfeld.."if you break it (Iraq) you own it"

    Posted by: shanestud | Jun 12, 2014 2:42:42 PM

  4. Do not mess with the Arab world, period. It is a breed of its own kind. You can take over Africans, Latinos, Asians, whatever you want, but do not mess with the Arabs. They won't forget, they won't forgive, they will die it in ecstasy fulfilling their revenge. You'll cut its head and two more virulent will emerge. I'm not being a racist, I'm just looking at history.

    Posted by: Alain | Jun 12, 2014 2:47:46 PM

  5. I think any student of history who is honest will agree with you.

    Posted by: spg | Jun 12, 2014 3:08:44 PM

  6. Sadaam Hussein was a terrible man who killed his own people, but at least it was his problem and not ours. I hate to say it but maybe that's what it took to keep people in line. We went in there and "liberated them" and we made it our problem.

    Posted by: Frank | Jun 12, 2014 3:11:28 PM

  7. This is the kind of blog entries that turn me away from Towleroad.

    Posted by: Marc | Jun 12, 2014 3:12:33 PM

  8. 'that simply ain't gonna happen' is something that a particular area is known for saying? As we say back home, 'very interesting.'

    Posted by: Franklin | Jun 12, 2014 3:13:36 PM

  9. Iraq is a cobbled together country of shia and sunni who have always hated each other. STRONG MAN saddam was the only thing that kept the powder keg tamped down

    Posted by: Moz's | Jun 12, 2014 3:20:08 PM

  10. Another Obama foreigh policy success story.

    Posted by: LincolnLounger | Jun 12, 2014 3:23:23 PM

  11. lincoln

    NO, it was bush who invaded iraq

    removing saddam caused this

    Posted by: Moz's | Jun 12, 2014 3:25:42 PM

  12. The admitted war criminals did accomplish one thing: the U.S. is still hobbled by the "you're either with us or with the terrorists" used to attack "Old Europe" especially France as well as Canada for not getting dragged into the Iraq debacle. Worse, the U.S. diverted resources from Afghanistan ("there's nothing left to bomb") and precipitated the mess that's been left behind in that country.

    I wonder what the new overlords will do with the American Embassy fortress when they take over? Like Saddam's palaces, the videos will be entertaining..."Brownie, you're doing a heckuva job."

    Posted by: Hue-Man | Jun 12, 2014 3:28:35 PM

  13. Very sad. Iraq needs an emergency unity government more than U.S. bombs.

    Posted by: Josh | Jun 12, 2014 3:43:28 PM

  14. What can you do? But our alleged democracies also have their own issues-wish we could fix our own instead of going off messing other places but where is the fun$$$$$$ in that?

    Rumsfeld and Cheney made $$$$$$ over Iraq. Tony Blair ltd now the Middle East consultant for the....yep..UN. And is raking it with all these so called ltd companies he has.

    And the rest of us? Still so GD stupid, racist-Obama's fault!-and insane to actually demand a better democracy in our own countries!

    Look at that moron Lincoln who has brought up Obama when the whole Iraq war was what made Bush jnr famous?

    We're so damaged as human beings that our pathetic irrational and childish fears always take over our critical thinking. Everything is so kneejerk and short-term.

    We knew this was going to happen. In the UK we actually marched against this war.

    But Saddam was bad. Yet we were the ones who put him in power for chrissakes!?

    Yet people would rather waste their petty little time and energy waging wars on gays, ethnic minorities, poor people etc in their western homelands, then read a GD book on politics!

    Posted by: Rowan | Jun 12, 2014 3:50:54 PM

  15. Thanks, Bushes! Or actually Bush Sr. and President Cheney.

    Posted by: Hansel Currywurst | Jun 12, 2014 3:55:58 PM

  16. I understand where you're coming from, David, but the time to save Iraq was before we let our president lie us into invading the country. A lot of Americans disagreed with the invasion and said so at the time, but far more Americans went along with it like sheep, and so we broke Iraq, and now we own it. No question Democracy won't work in that country, but for us to just hand the broken pieces of the nation we wrecked over to its people and say, "Fix it yourself," is just plain wrong. I don't know if we should reinstate the draft and refuse to let the right wing chicken hawks' kids off -- a lot of them have sons and daughters who would do just fine as grunts with a gun -- but this attitude of "It ain't my problem" is immoral. We set Iraq on this path; we need to do something to stop it, not just throw up our hands and whine that they don't think like us or live like us, so they're not worth as much as us.

    Posted by: Kyle Sullivan | Jun 12, 2014 3:58:29 PM

  17. Alain....No we cannot take over Asians, etc. Vietnam should have taught us that. Instead, trillions of dollars later.......

    Posted by: stevenj | Jun 12, 2014 4:01:11 PM

  18. how about America SPEND Money on AMERICA????? How about FIXING OUR OWN Country UP...?????

    Posted by: disgusted american | Jun 12, 2014 4:15:04 PM

  19. Another Obama foreigh policy success story.

    Posted by: LincolnLounger | Jun 12, 2014 3:23:23 PM

    ....and this is Obama's Fault...HOW??????

    Posted by: disgusted american | Jun 12, 2014 4:15:50 PM

  20. You liberals crack me up. Obama has been in power 6 years, and he has done nothing. Hillary and Kerry were useless. The whole world hates us and Ole jug Ears cow tows to the muslims and bows to leaders of every nation that laughs at us, But all the libs think he's the second coming because he gave us healthcare. Remember my gay brothers and sisters he was against gay marriage during his first campaign, but when it became politically advantageous, he changed his tune. You don't even know when you're being used. Now go ahead and attack me with your name calling and nasty comments, I served 20 years in the USMC and the last 25 as a police officer, both of them as a proud gay man, I can take anything you can dish out.

    Posted by: I wont grow up | Jun 12, 2014 5:02:08 PM

  21. Good thing we spent all that time preparing their law enforcement and military to handle exactly this type of situation! Whew, what a relief!

    Posted by: Lucas H | Jun 12, 2014 5:06:50 PM

  22. It's true the US is still trying to enforce Churchillian foreign policy set at the end of WWI, but the current crisis owes more to the imbalance of wealth in the Mid East as a result of radical Saudi Arabia having all the money and spending it all over the globe on Wahadist fantasies than on anything practical or ennobling. It's not just the ME, but also Africa, the Philippines, Pakistan and Indonesia, and even in China, where the Uihgers get some money smuggled in over the desserts from the west. You can't conflate US foreign policy and what's happening in Iraq, because it's happening all over the place, not just in Iraq.

    Posted by: anon | Jun 12, 2014 5:21:31 PM

  23. My opinion: from what I have seen in the news, Iraqi military are cowards who will not fight for their own country. No other country can save it for them, thus Iraq is lost to the Islamic hatred for each other. Suni against Shiite .. sad but they kill each other off in the name of a mythical man in the sky. I knew that the USA would come up the loser in any intervention in the Mid-East. Mid-Eastern men revel in war and death. It is part of their culture. No one ever 'wins' there. There is only the next battle to regain honor and religion. Sane people should shun them and contain them in their own dismal countries to consume themselves in death and destruction.

    Posted by: Gordon | Jun 12, 2014 5:50:55 PM

  24. "Americans are reacting in shock "

    Uh, no we are not.

    This is the natural state of modern Islam.

    Posted by: Randy | Jun 12, 2014 6:32:28 PM

  25. WHEN are the right wing to GET IT????..Bush was a clueless hapless ideologue who stupidly thought god was leading him....spreading freedom and liberty...a total loser...Cheney just saw it as a $$$ opportunity...This is a mess...what a disgrace. What a bunch of losers.

    Posted by: thom | Jun 12, 2014 6:38:12 PM

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