MCViewPoint

Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

What Was the Point of Regime Change in Iraq? | The National Interest

Posted by M. C. Fox on June 9, 2018

What we do know is that America’s ill-advised and unnecessary invasion handed a big win to Tehran, and, for the last 15 years, Iraq was ruled by generally Iran-friendly Shia chauvinists. It may now be indirectly governed by a populist ideologue—Sadr—who openly championed the death and maiming of America’s cherished soldiers.

Iraq may be Iran-friendly Shia but Iraq and Iran friendly never attacked US. Sunni friendly Saudi Arabia, that is another story.

http://nationalinterest.org/feature/what-was-the-point-regime-change-iraq-26135?page=show

…We all knew who was behind that 2007 attack, of course: The Mahdi Army, the anti-American militia of the populist cleric Moqtada al-Sadr.

The whole mosque-raid and IED-strike episode reflected in microcosm the law of unintended consequences. In fact, the latest polling results from Iraq tells the same, broader story. Sadr, the despicable strongman of the slums, looks to have won the first general election in Iraq since the defeat of ISIS.

Sadr’s militias twice rose up against U.S. forces in Iraq and were responsible for hundreds, if not a couple thousand, American combat deaths. Sadr came from an impeccable pedigree of Shia scholars and leaders— Saddam had killed his father, brothers, and uncle—but Sadr, though always popular among the dispossessed, was then seen as little more than a joke. Many urbane Shia referred to him as “Mullah Atari,” a reference both to his lack of scholarly theological credentials and childhood penchant for video games. American troops mostly called him “Mookie” and hated his guts.

Sadr has since re-branded himself as an enemy of corruption and a cross-sectarian proponent of governance reform. Nonetheless, to my men and most U.S. troopers, he’ll always be the fiercely anti-American thug who sent his impoverished, hopeless fighters out into the streets to kill soldiers and marines…

The U.S. Army can bring down a dictator, but no amount of power and might can realistically control and construct the proceeding governments. The result: Moqtada al-Sadr astride the Iraqi nation-state. The government that the U.S. military installed so long ago grew so weak, so corrupt, and so illegitimate that its people chose a daft warlord to right the ship.

Let us remember this lesson and preemptively oppose the next regime change operation (potentially in Iran?). After spending $2.2 trillion in Iraq, and losing thousands of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi lives, we are not safer than we were before. Furthermore, the hard-earned taxpayer dollars could have instead been reinvested in here at home, benefiting the American people…

What we do know is that America’s ill-advised and unnecessary invasion handed a big win to Tehran, and, for the last 15 years, Iraq was ruled by generally Iran-friendly Shia chauvinists. It may now be indirectly governed by a populist ideologue—Sadr—who openly championed the death and maiming of America’s cherished soldiers.

Still, two things are certain. First, the U.S. has gained nothing of strategic value from its decades-long experiment in imposed regime change. And second, more tragically, I’ll never be able to explain this latest turn of events to Fuller’s widow—or to tell her what this was all for.

Be seeing you

That close

Missed it by that much…

 

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