Saturday, March 18, 2017

Will Bush Be Vindicated? A Case For The Iraq War

Jeff McIntyre offers a piece in the National Observer in defense of President Bush and the Iraq War.

In the lead-up to the 2003 American-led invasion of Iraq, all six of the world’s major external intelligence agencies, as well as prominent politicians and senior officials in the U.S. Democrat and Republican parties, were persuaded, by their respective pieces of intelligence evidence, that Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. In this article, Jeff McIntyre argues the case for President Bush’s military action in Iraq.

One of the most interesting books ever to be published about the war in Iraq was written by Douglas Feith, Under-Secretary of State in the George W. Bush Administration, and is called War and Decision. Unlike many journalists or political opponents of the war, Feith was inside all the decisions and thinking of the Administration at the highest levels, from the inception of the Administration. He was able to draw on personal dairy notes and recollections from the meetings of the key Administration officials, beginning with the 9/11 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington.

Feith recalls the very first assessments done about America’s role in a post-9/11 world — assessments carried out with senior Administration officials, as they returned to the US on a military plane from Russia, to get around the global grounding of civilian airlines. Part and parcel of that process was a series of thorough and frank analyses concerning the existential threats posed to the US and its interests. An integral part of these analyses dealt with the threats posed by Iraq.

Feith posits that the containment policy through the 1990s to constrain Saddam Hussein had not been successful, that Saddam Hussein had both used and coveted weapons of mass destruction (WMDs), that he had supported terrorists, and that he had a singular history of aggression. In the post-9/11 world, the possibility of terrorism on a massive scale greatly sharpened the Administration’s thinking.

You can read the rest of the piece via the below link:

Note: I agree with Mr. McIntyre. Douglas Feith's War and Decision is one of the best books on the Iraq War. I highly recommend it to anyone wanting to understand the war and aftermath.

The U.S. Military and our allies defeated Saddam Hussein's Iraqi military in an amazing display of speed and precision combat. I believe General Tommy Franks and the Iraq campaign will be viewed favorably by future military historians.

Sadly, the war's swift and successful conclusion was overshadowed by the post-war occupation of Iraq. Douglas Feith rightly lays most of the blame on Paul Bremer, who made a number of critical errors. Most egregious was the dismantling of the Iraqi army and dismissing Iraqi Baath Party government officials, which made the country largely ungovernable and fueled the revolt against the occupation forces and the new Iraqi government. Mr. Bremer would have done well to have studied General Douglas MacArthur’s successful occupation of post-war Japan and the allied occupation of post-war Germany.   

Later, thanks to the urging of retired U.S. Army General Jack Keane, Senator John McCain, and others, President Bush changed the Iraqi strategy and ordered what has been called the "surge."

The new military campaign, headed by U.S. Army General David Petraeus, soundly defeated the insurgents and persuaded the sharply divided Iraqi factions to come together and govern the country.

Unfortunately, President Obama could not negotiate an agreement with the Iraqi government to have U.S. troops remain there and he withdrew all U.S. forces. Without an American military presence to balance the power and referee, the Iraqi factions battled each other and this gave birth to ISIS and a new insurgency.

I'm hopeful that President Trump's new military team will defeat ISIS in Iraq and elsewhere.


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