~ Where the Sun Will Never Set on Our liberty ~
This was something I was intending to write about for awhile now, and since Iraq has been in the news again lately it seemed like the perfect time. The two biggest assertions by liberals about the Iraq war is that it was about oil, and the false pretense of weapons of mass destruction. You know the mantra: Bush lied, people died. This myth has been perpetuated long enough, and it's time to set the record straight.
The policy for regime change in Iraq actually began under president Bill Clinton when he signed the Iraq Liberation Act in 1998, which states that it was the policy of the United States to support democratic movements within Iraq. The Act was cited in October 2002 to argue for the authorization of military force against the Iraqi government. WMD's were only one of a litany of accusations against Saddam including:
If you recall, Saddam had previously invaded Kuwait 1990 and tried to annex it. It was only though military intervention that he was forced out. In 1991 he signed the Gulf War truce, which he continually violated over the next 10 years. Eventually George Bush Jr. gave Saddam an ultimatum, obey the Gulf War truce or else. Two months before the deadline, Bush went to congress to request the use of military force in the event that Saddam didn't comply with UN Resolution 1447. Both Houses of Congress including a majority of the Democrats in the Senate voted to allow military force in Iraq. Saddam ultimately refused to cooperate and the 2003 Iraq War began. Had Saddam agreed to cooperate the war would have never happened.
As previously mentioned, WND's were only one factor yet it is the one most singled out. The notion that Bush lied about WMD's is absolutely false. At the time the whole international intelligence community believed Saddam had WMD's, and rightfully so. It was well known that Saddam used chemical weapons on his enemies and his own people in the 1980's. And in 1981 Israel had bombed a nuclear reactor just south of Baghdad. The fact that he used chemical weapons before proved that he did have WMD's. In tape recordings discovered from the 1990's, Saddam admits to having chemical and germ warheads. The tapes also reveal Iraq's persistent efforts to hide information about their WMD programs form U.N. inspectors. Later it came out that Iraq had concealed it's biological weapons program. So where did these weapons go? Former Iraqi general Georges Sada, who was the second highest ranked general in the Iraq Air Force, claims these weapons were transported to Syria shorty before the Iraq War. This is plausible considering Syria has one of the largest stockpiles of chemical weapons in the world.
Lastly, if the war was about oil we wouldn't have wasted our time on liberating towns like Fulujia, and we certainly wouldn't have left. A truly malevolent country would have just taken the resources like the British Empire used to do, but we didn't. We pay for those resources like everyone else, and usually more than there worth. In truth the U.S. has plenty of oil on it's own. The US is set to overtake Saudi Arabia in oil production and become the world's biggest oil producer by 2016. And that's not even counting the oil that is largely untapped on federal lands. China has actually been the biggest beneficiary of Iraqi oil. They buy nearly half the oil that Iraq produces, and are angling for more. So there you have it. As Paul Harvey would say, now you know the rest of the story.