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Lessons of Iraq - Trying So Hard Not to Miss the Point - Yet Never Learning It

Reader comment on item: Reflections on the Invasion of Iraq

Submitted by M. Tovey (United States), Mar 18, 2013 at 17:15

There are many others, but Iraq stands in stark outline as an example of a failed attempt at something that should never have gotten beyond a simple political ideal; that of helping those who are friends of this country. Iraq was never a friend; neither a good ally; in reality, an investment gone real badly.

Nation building as a political ideology was never vetted enough on a presumptive circumstance that every one that this country 'invested in' was a good investment. Thus, way too much time and energy (for some, translated into money) was spent on Iraq. If the war between Iraq and Iran was any kind of indicator, the lessons there should have told the sufficient story.

A story going around from long past was that Iraq had significant natural resources that need wresting away from her former leader, S Hussein. When he took his adventurism beyond his borders, he provided the seed of opportunity the 'nation-builder' mentality to be used to free up those resources. For a long time, the WMD story seemed to provide the necessary alternative reasons to root him out-and it worked.

This reminisce of Iraq should now be used as the cautionary tale for the events unfolding in Syria; for the same demons that seemed to hold out Iraq as an offering to all-out war are wafting in the winds of Syria's current discontent. But to think the United States is not a full participant, think again. The foil of encouraging the insurgency against al-Assad's regime by proxy does not escape attention.

Ultimately, nation building has been so completely repudiated by those who are friend and enemies of other's governments, regimes and democracies alike. Yet too, Syria is being readied for exactly the same and one need not wonder all too much why. If al-Assad's Syria is defeated in due time as it appears, then Turkey could easily be tempted to position itself as a premier power in the Middle East.

Whose agenda then is served? But wait; do not miss out on the circumstance that is still yet undetermined: al-Assad has yet to play himself all out. You can bet he will not end up as the picture of Hussein depicts and the Russians are now more than ever not going to let all of this get away from them.

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