Socialist Worker

The West wrecked Iraq last time—Don't let them do it again

by Judith Orr
Issue No. 2408

A Kiowa (OH-58) helicopter in the Kirkuk area of Iraq in 2007

A Kiowa (OH-58) helicopter in the Kirkuk area of Iraq in 2007 (Pic: Spc. Bryanna Poulin/The U.S.Army/flickr)


Tony Blair has called for a new war on Iraq in the wake of the crisis erupting in the country.

The militant Isis group has taken control of several cities in the country over the past week (see pages 4&5). 

As Socialist Worker went to press, Isis forces were 40 miles from the capital Baghdad.

The US had started to evacuate some of its 5,000 embassy staff from the city.

Blair denied the West had any responsibility for the crisis. Western warmongers want to rewrite history. 

The West’s 2003 invasion and occupation of Iraq wreaked devastation. Sectarian divisions were fostered to set groups against one another.

Now a country with a long tradition of unity before the invasion faces a three-way partition.

US president Barack Obama boasted that the US left behind a “sovereign, stable and self-reliant Iraq” when US combat troops left the country in 2011.

The hawks claim the West pulled out too soon and their only solution is more bombing—not just in Iraq, but in Syria too.

Jamilia Haider-Al-Amin, an Iraqi living in Manchester, told Socialist Worker that the propaganda is “insulting”. 

“Blair is totally deluded to think anybody, Iraqi or not, would fall for such spin,” she added.

Bombing

Ako Zadia, an asylum seeker from Kurdistan in Northern Iraq, told Socialist Worker, “It is a terrible situation, but bombing is not the answer. 

“Many innocent people will be killed. It would be another disaster for the Iraqi people.”

Blair’s drive for a new bombing campaign is not winning immediate support in a British ruling class chastened by the vote against attacking Syria last year.

Instead foreign secretary William Hague said Britain would offer only “counter insurgency expertise”.

But the US has not ruled out military intervention. 

And Hague has said Britain will back the US, “in anything that they decide to do”.

The government is also using the opportunity to attack Muslims here. 

It has threatened to arrest people they believe plan to go to Iraq to fight and take their passports.

New alliances show that Western imperialism is flexible. Iran was part of George W Bush’s “Axis of Evil”. Now together they support the Iraqi government against Isis.

Yet in Syria, any bombing campaign would be against president Bashar al-Assad alongside Isis.

Such shifts aren’t new and they show the real interests of the Western powers. They have never protected the lives of ordinary Iraqis. 

Their mission is to protect the interests of imperialism.

For news on anti-war protests go to stopwar.org.uk

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