Thirteen years ago, US occupation forces entered Baghdad, proud of their victory over a country that has been under an unjust and deadly blockade for more than a decade, and boasting about a sneaky victory over a country that was forced to destroy its weapons in compliance with resolutions that appeared to come from the UN but in reality were US-based, and the country did so in order to obtain milk for its children and medicine for the sick.
America came into Iraq and occupied it, ignoring international law, alleging that Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction and supports Al-Qaeda which later turned out to be false allegations that aimed at giving a cover to the occupation and its goals of destroying Iraq on the humanitarian and structural levels, bringing it to pieces and robbing it of its wealth.
What’s painful is that Iraq, where children are still dying of hunger and sickness due to lack of food and medications in Fallujah and other areas of the country, is still paying for the invasion of its forces to Kuwait, which lasted a few months, although Saddam Hussein was considered a dictator according to western standards which allowed for ousting him, while America is not paying any compensations for its occupation which was led by an elected government and supported by an elected parliament based on lies and false pretences. It is an occupation that continues to destroy Iraq and its wealth and continues to create a society where widowhood, orphans and humanitarian tragedies prevail and it continues to kill the future of an entire generation educationally, professionally and psychologically.
The United States intentionally prepared for the division of Iraq prior to the occupation, and began to aggravate sectarian issues, with exaggerations about the persecution of Shias and Kurds and the recall of the Halabja tragedy years after its occurrence, which is a matter that is repeatedly used by the US and the West in a sickening manner. This selective use of human rights as a retaliatory political tool when necessary is one of the greatest human rights violations.
After the American occupation, aspects of sectarian incitement increased. This appeared so brazenly in Paul Bremer’s book “My Year in Iraq”, where he stated how he used to meet with Shia Imams and talk with them about how unjustly they’ve been treated and about their historical opportunity for revenge from Sunnis, thus initiating the so-called political process through rigging demographic figures and speaking about false suffering. It is ironic that, of the 52 most wanted people in Saddam’s Iraq, according to the American administration, 38 were Shia.
America has apparently handed Iraq over to a bunch of corrupt politicians who are associated with Iranian and international security systems, some were even wanted for criminal cases, such as Ahmed Chalabi who was wanted in the case of the Petra Bank in Jordan.
Prior to the invasion and after it, Iraq experienced starvation and the loss of the dignity and humanity of the majority of its citizens. It is still paying billions of dollars in compensation – most of which is unjustified – while the corrupt political class, which came with the occupation and is collaborating with it and with Iran, is plundering tens, or rather hundreds, of billions of dollars, while many citizens cannot find food for their children or medicine for the sick.
The most heinous and horrible game in the Iraqi scene is the use of extremism and terrorism to end national Iraqi resistance, and then moving on to the destruction of the infrastructure of Sunni cities and turning their case into a big humanitarian issue, while at the same time reducing an entire generation and depriving children and youth from education, in a country that at some point was at the forefront of literacy rates.
There have recently been more documented reports of the Iranian and American role in infiltrating these organisations, mainly Daesh, and using them as a tool to make geographic and demographic changes in the area similar to what happened in Mosul, for example, where Daesh was handed advanced American weapons and large sums of cash to crack down on Sunnis.
Beyond the controversy and debate about Daesh and who’s behind it, the fact that Iraq and the region did not know Al-Qaeda or Daesh – as ideologies, practice or presence – prior to the American occupation, is enough to hold Americans responsible for what is happening in the region, both legally and morally. It also requires that intellectuals and future generations endlessly demand American apologies and compensation of thousands of billions of dollars for all the murders, bloodshed and destruction of the lives of future generations in Iraq and the region.
Translated from AlKhaleejOnline, 16 April 2016.
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.