What kind of ‘victory’ is this?
Following their withdrawal American troops whose pictures were broadcast on the news last night seemed to be under the deluded impression they were leaving Iraq following some kind of victory. Maybe for them, as they are still alive and have survived it is some kind of victory but certainly it is not a victory for America at large nor is it one for the Iraqi people. In today’s Daily Mirror there is a thoughtful piece asking if the Iraq war was worth its sacrifice in lives and the answer has to be a definite no. Much like our intervention in Afghanistan has engrained terrorism in the hinterlands of Pakistan the intervention in Iraq actually has introduced al-Qaeda into Iraq not to mention the scores it has driven to their cause by handing them easy propaganda points.
Trying to fight a stateless body like al-Quaeda by charging around like the proverbial bull in a china shop effecting regime change wherever you see fit does not equate to a convincing or even sensible strategy. Life is hardly better for the Iraqis this intervention was meant to save; yes they have the semberlance of democracy but what kind of democracy is it where the government keeps huddled in its fortified so-called ‘Green Zone’ for fear of attack? Meanwhile, as well as suffering and the atrocities inflicted on them by ‘our’ side they have to endure the menace of a terrorism that did not exist before, as the recent suicide attack showed this menace is not defeated. So, just as al-Quaeda returns and there are murmmerings that the Sunni tribes the US relied upon will turn back to insurgency the US deparats claiming ‘victory’.
Of course, all of this is not to mention the enormous strength that Iran has gained from Iraq’s descent into chaos; a strength that may yet come back to cause further problems. All-in-all a job well done then?