5 years on in the Iraq war. Cheney still tells the same lies.

Despite the recent Pentagon sponsored review of 600,000 Iraqi documents showing that Iraq and Saddam had no operational relationship with Al Queda, Vice President Dick Gadianton… I mean Dick Cheney again attached 9/11 to Iraq:

“This long-term struggle became urgent on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001 . That day we clearly saw that dangers can gather far from our own shores and find us right there at home,” said Cheney, who was accompanied by his wife, Lynne, and their daughter, Elizabeth.

“So the United States made a decision: to hunt down the evil of terrorism and kill it where it grows, to hold the supporters of terror to account and to confront regimes that harbor terrorists and threaten the peace,” Cheney said. “Understanding all the dangers of this new era, we have no intention of abandoning our friends or allowing this country of 170,000 square miles to become a staging area for further attacks against Americans.”

http://news.yahoo.com/s/mcclatchy/20080318/wl_mcclatchy/2883358

On the same day, the Iraqi Foreign Minister said that the UN Resolution that authorized the US-led occupation the “mother of all mistakes’:

The May 2003 resolution was “the mother of all mistakes because it changed the mission from liberating the people into occupying the country,” said Hoshyar Zebari in an interview with AP on Tuesday.

The resolution 1483 recognized Britain and the United States as occupying powers (‘The Authority’) in Iraq.

http://www.presstv.ir/Detail.aspx?id=48064&sectionid=351020201Of course, the occupation has wreaked disaster upon Iraq as the estimates of casualties of the war range from 85,000 to 1,185,000 souls:

FALSE PROMISE OF PEACE

On the day that Saddam Hussein’s statue came crashing down, Mahmoud Sami was among those who celebrated, albeit quietly and within the confines of his own home. Watching the event on Fox News on an illegal hidden satellite dish, he was both excited and scared. He was elated that the dictator was gone, but nervous about the demons he was sure Iraq’s new “freedom” was about to unleash.

For the first three months of the occupation, the 40-year-old did little but try to find food and fuel for the home he shares with his brother and elderly parents. Electricity was sporadic and fuel was in such short supply that it became normal to spend days in line waiting for a single can of gasoline. Eventually, as he became accustomed to the new norms, he reopened his small hardware store in the Karada neighbourhood.

He is a Sunni Muslim, the neighbourhood is predominantly Shia, but he thought nothing of it. He’d had a store there for 15 years.

He went quietly about his business as the angry whirlwind of politics and war consumed the city around him. He celebrated the day Mr. Hussein was captured in the spider hole near Tikrit, felt his elation dim as he watched the Shia-dominated government stage a sectarian show trial that prosecuted and hanged the dictator. He was encouraged by the secular government of the U.S.-installed prime minister Ayad Allawi, then worried by developments under his more sectarian successors, Ibrahim Jaafari and Mr. al-Maliki.

On Feb. 22, 2006, the al-Askari shrine in Samarra, one of the holiest sites to Shia Muslims, was destroyed by an explosion that obliterated its golden dome. Mr. Sami was in his modest front yard as the news of the attack spread. Within hours, the quiet, mixed street on which he had lived his whole life was sucked into the burgeoning civil war.

A group of a dozen armed Shia gunmen appeared on his street looking for Sunnis. One of them, a teenager, shouted “Are you a Wahhabi?” referring to the radical strain of Sunni Islam practised by Osama bin Laden and his followers. Mr. Sami, who has more interest in English soccer than in religion, smiled, waved and went inside, locking the door behind him.

Two days later, he was dragged out of his car in the Shia neighbourhood of Sadr City and threatened at gunpoint, again simply because he was Sunni. “I was laughing, I didn’t know what was happening,” he recalls. He escaped because a Shia friend intervened. But even his friend told him never to return to the area.

Eventually, he stopped going to his hardware store, finally selling it to a Shia neighbour for less than the value of his inventory.

“We never knew what democracy was before, now we have the worst democracy in the world,” he said in an interview at his family’s middle-class home, where he keeps an AK-47 rifle tucked in a cupboard for protection.

A supporter of the U.S. invasion, he feels betrayed by what followed. “In the beginning it was good,” he says, his 65-year-old mother nodding in agreement. “But everything after that was a mistake. Now I think freedom could have waited. Maybe for another 10 years.”

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080313.wiraqmark0315/BNStory/International

 

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