10-Year Iraq War Anniversary: What We’ve Learned In the Past Decade


Preface: Many experts and alternative writers pointed out the false justifications and huge downsides before the Iraq war started. I know for a fact that many letters and phone calls were made to Congress in an attempt to stop the war.

And the protests against the Iraq war were the largest protests in history.

Yet the politicians plowed ahead with the disastrous war and refused to listen to the facts … or the will of the people.

The Iraq war started 10 years ago. This is a roundup of the facts that have been documented about the debacle in the last decade.

The War Was Planned Long Before 9/11

The American government planned the Iraq war long before 9/11.

Former CIA director George Tenet said that the White House wanted to invade Iraq long before 9/11, and inserted “crap” in its justifications for invading Iraq.

Former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill – who sat on the National Security Council – also says that Bush planned the Iraq war before 9/11.

Top British officials say that the U.S. discussed Iraq regime change even before Bush took office.

In 2000, Cheney said a Bush administration might “have to take military action to forcibly remove Saddam from power.” And see this and this.

Indeed, neoconservatives planned regime change .

Weapons of Mass Destruction and 9/11

Everyone knew that Iraq did not possess weapons of mass destruction (update here).

U.S. officials are guilty of war crimes for using 9/11 as a false justification for the Iraq war. Indeed, the entire torture program was implemented in an attempt to justify the Iraq war.

American officials considered lettering Saddam should down a U.S. or UN plane, in order to provide a false justification for war.

Saddam allegedly offered to leave Iraq if the U.S. would call off the war … but we refused. We wanted to invade.

The Real Reason

No wonder …

As even the top Republican leaders have admitted, the Iraq war was – in fact – for oil.

War Crimes

The U.S. engaged in a systematic program of torture in Iraq, which rounded up innocent farmers, reporters, old people and children. People were murdered and sexually abused as part of the torture program.

The American military widely used depleted uranium in Iraq, which can cause cancer and birth defects for decades (see this, this, this, this, this and this).

Chemical weapons were used in Falluja, which greatly increased the rate of birth defects.

The Pentagon sent in one of the main US creators of the death squads in El Salvador to set up paramilitary death squads and torture centers in Iraq.

(And Iraqis are worse off now than before the Iraq war. Christians are more widely persecuted than under Saddam.)

Cost: $5-6 Trillion Dollars

Nobel prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz estimated in 2008 that the Iraq war could cost America up to $5 trillion dollars.

But a new study by Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies says the Iraq war costs could exceed $6 trillion, when interest payments are taken into account.

Given that top economists say that war is bad for the economy, the Iraq war is one of the primary reasons for our current economic problems.

The War Has Hurt America’s National Security

National security experts – including both hawks and doves – agree that waging war against Iraq and other Middle Eastern countries has weakened America’s national security and increased terrorism risks. See this, this, this, this, this, this, this and this.

Category: Think Tank, War/Defense

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

11 Responses to “Reflections On a Major Debacle”

  1. Tim says:

    Thank you Dickhead Cheney.

  2. peachin says:

    Actually, George W. Bush (he was responsible for Cheney’s actions – No? why didn’t he expose him) It is said, and now we see… George W set this country back 20 years. And Yet…. the ignorance and arrogance of the republican “mainstay” wants this time back to do more destruction…. and we all sit back yelling at the TV watching sports…. America deserves what it got. After all, are you part of the “Majority?”

  3. James Cameron says:

    We come back to this time and again, don’t we, the damage done to this country in terms of blood and treasure, ballooning deficits, a protracted war in Afghanistan, loss of opportunity elsewhere?

    In July of 1940 the book “Guilty Men” was penned anonymously by three journalists, in response to the disastrous appeasement policies in Britain in the 1930s. It excoriated the key public figures responsible for these policies, 15 in all, though the list was far from complete.

    We have our own list of guilty men, and we can only hope that the price they pay for their decisions will be sullied reputations in the years and decades ahead. Unfortunately, that’s all we can hope for.

  4. ilsm says:

    Is oil the reason for the military industry complex? Or does the “health” of the military industrial complex require oil be protected with military force?

    Since the1970′s protecting the Persian Gulf has been an important “mission” for the US military, prior to that it was a “British empire issue”. First Iran goes Islamic Republic, emphasizing the Sunni Shi’a split. Then US supports Saddaam Hussein in the engaging the Sunni block against Shi’a Iran from going down the Gulf to take out the Saudi Royals’s oil cartel.

    Then Saddaam goes rogue, wants nukes, gets Osiris reactor bombed by the Isreal Defense Force. Tanker wars in the late 80′s, US flags on Kuwaii tankers and such. Desert Storm, did not go to Baghdad as the budding US imperialists wanted. As if the Persian Gulf would keep the military industry complex going when the Red Army collapsed. By mid 70′s I was sure the Russians could never stand to the combination of NATO and Japanese combined vast economic potential.

    I cannot tell if defending the Persian Gulf is one of the two point five (2.5) wars which baseline the US’ military’s force planning.

    Lot of windmills, and solar tech for the cost of building the 2 Ford (new) Class (CVN 21) super carriers planned. How much green energy could be bought with cuts from the failed F-35?

  5. S Brennan says:

    For two years we have been paying and arming rebels in Syria, the US has tired of the cat & mouse game and seeks open war to achieve Regime change. Different Prez, but the EXACT SAME POLICY of neo-colonialism.

    “that would be helpful in breaking the deadlock and bringing down the Assad regime,” said Stavridis*…Levin directly endorsed the idea of attacking Syrian air defenses “I believe there should be the next ratcheting up of military effort and that would include going after some of Syria’s air defenses,” Levin said.Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) on Tuesday called for the United States to put boots on the ground in Syria to secure chemical weapons sites, in light of new allegations that chemical weapons were used. Levin said it might come to that at some point and that the U.S. military should be prepared.

    *Supreme Allied Commander, Europe


  6. Been Around 1963 says:

    One of the biggest lies of the 21st century: “Bush made an honest mistake going in to Iraq.” The UN inspectors eviscerated US WMD “intelligence” well before the invasion, and Bush’s people had no response.

    A similar lie: “Our allies also believed there was WMD.” Not after the inspections.

    Most transparently bogus defense of all:” George Tenet said, ‘It’s a slam dunk!’”

    Most predictable lie of today: Charles Krauthammer said that “Obama botched Iraq” on Fox News.

    There must be a special place in Hell for lying crackpots like Krauthammer, Bill Kristol, et al.

  7. GeorgeBurnsWasRight says:

    “Lessons learned” depends upon what people believe the facts to be. A poll last year found that 63% of Republicans, 27% of Independents, and 15% of Republicans believe that the US found nuclear weapons when we invaded.

    I couldn’t locate the poll numbers but likewise, similar proportions or even greater numbers believe there was proof that Saddam was involved in plotting 9/11 despite the fact that bin Laden didn’t tell very many people about the attack beforehand, and certainly wouldn’t have talked to Hussein, a man he wanted to remove from power.

    Increasingly, American voters are basing their decisions upon misinformation. I doubt that 25% of voters are aware of even half of the six lessons you list. This does not bode well for the future of our country.

  8. BennyProfane says:

    If you want an upset stomach, listen to Richard Perle on NPR today (I heard the interview this morning), who, for some reason, climbed out of his hole to attempt to justify this criminal enterprise.

  9. Greg0658 says:

    thanks ism for the last para .. the head was getting hot recalling Solyndra experiment and KeystoneXL .. who’s F’ing in charge / thats right the goldilocks economy of WS efficiency

    build it to tear it down and install it (over watersheds & under ag country) to ship to China to have their P / P distill it into usable commodities

    don’t let me dumb this down and send off topic – war for energy or waste stuff or persuasion or _?

  10. hammerandtong2001 says:

    This is certainly a controversial topic. And at the risk of adding to the discussion with some further controversy…

    It’s hardly surprising that the United States had developed war plans for proactive offensive action (and/or reactive defensive reactions) against Iraq, some dating back 20 years ago or so.

    The US Joint Chiefs, with various military planning departments, along with the war colleges currently have war plans on hand for the US to attack and make war on every country fielding military arsenals and troops. This includes countries the US considers allies, such as many of the western industrialized democracies. Pre-planning has been a hallmark of the US military dating back to the turn — of the LAST century.

    It may, or may not, surprise some here, that the US Army and Navy had devised War Plan Orange as early as 1906. War Plan Orange laid out the US military campaign to attack and defeat Japan, in the event war broke out between these two then-developing powers. This plan was updated throughout the following decades, and served as the basis for the Rainbow War Plans, which were ultimately used to guide US military action against Japan following the Japanese attack at Pearl Harbor, in 1941.

    You can look it up.

    For better or worse, and right or wrong, in a locked room stacked on shelves in the Pentagon, are war plans for the US to engage anybody and everybody in a real shooting war. It has been that way for over a century. That the US had “pre-planned” war with Iraq, I think is more “expected” than “surprising.”


    BR: Its consensus that this was a debacle — ill conceived, poorly executed, awfully expensive in blood & treasure. A clusterfuck in everyway

  11. As a Canadian, I can see now the merits of a good war vs a bad war. If a Republican goes in for oil and humanitarian reasons (300,000 citizens killed), it’s bad – e.g. Iraq. But if a Democrat goes in for oil and hr (500 citizens killed), it’s good – e.g. Libya. Thanx everyone!