Stephen Zunes : Iraq


Democrats Versus the Peace Movement?
3 July 2006

The U.S. Congress failed in recent weeks to take even symbolic steps to encourage a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, even though the majority of Americans support an end to the war. Many anti-war advocates are hoping that the mid-term U.S. elections in November will push Congress into Democratic hands and thereby increase the chances of ending the war. Don’t hold your breath.


Democrats Versus the Peace Movement?
3 June 2006

The U.S. Congress failed in recent weeks to take even symbolic steps to encourage a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, even though the majority of Americans support an end to the war. Many anti-war advocates are hoping that the mid-term U.S. elections in November will push Congress into Democratic hands and thereby increase the chances of ending the war. Don’t hold your breath.


The U.S. Role in Iraq’s Sectarian Violence
6 May 2006

The sectarian violence which has swept across Iraq following last month’s terrorist bombing of the Golden Mosque in Samara is yet another example of the tragic consequences of the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq. Until the 2003 U.S. invasion and occupation, Iraq had maintained a longstanding history of secularism and a strong national identity among its Arab population despite its sectarian differences.


Iraq Three Years after “Liberation”
21 April 2006

Three years after U.S. forces captured Baghdad, Iraqis are suffering from unprecedented violence and misery. Although Saddam Hussein was indeed one of the world’s most brutal tyrants, the no-fly zones and arms embargo in place for more than a dozen years prior to his ouster had severely weakened his capacity to do violence against his own people. Today, the level of violent deaths is not only far higher than during his final years in power, but the sheer randomness of the violence has left millions of Iraqis in a state of perpetual terror. At least 30,000 Iraqi civilians have died, most of them at the hands of U.S. forces but increasingly from terrorist groups and Iraqi government death squads. Thousands more soldiers and police have also been killed. Violent crime, including kidnapping, rape, and armed robbery, is at record levels. There is a proliferation of small arms, and private militias are growing rapidly. A Lebanon-type multifaceted civil war, only on a much wider and deadlier scale, grows more likely with time.


The U.S. Invasion of Iraq: Not the Fault of Israel and Its Supporters
3 January 2006

As the official rationales for the U.S. invasion of Iraq—that Iraq possessed “weapons of mass destruction” which threatened the national security of the United States and that the Iraqi government had operational ties to al-Qaida—are now widely acknowledged to have been fabricated, and the back-up rationalization—of bringing freedom and democracy to Iraq—is also losing credibility, increasing attention is being given as to why the U.S. government, with broad bipartisan support, made such a fateful decision.


The Democrats and Iraqi WMDs: Bush is Right, Sort of…
27 November 2005

Now that some Democrats are finally speaking out against the administration’s phony claims about Iraq’s “weapons of mass destruction,” conservative talk show hosts, columnists and bloggers have been dredging up scores of pre-invasion quotes by Democratic leaders citing non-existent Iraqi WMDs. These defenders of the administration keep asking the question, “If President Bush lied, does […]


Bush Again Resorts to Fear-Mongering to Justify Iraq Policy
12 October 2005

President George W. Bush’s October 6 address at the National Endowment for Democracy illustrated his administration’s increasingly desperate effort to justify the increasingly unpopular U.S. war in Iraq. The speech focused upon the Bush administration’s claim that the Iraqi insurgency against U.S. occupation forces somehow constituted a grave threat to the security of the United States and the entire civilized world.


How Much Power Will the New Iraqi Government Really Have?
3 October 2005

President Ghazi al-Yawar was initially viewed suspiciously by many Iraqis because of his Saudi ties, his many years in exile, and his membership in the IGC, though he has since gained some credibility for his criticism of U.S. counter-insurgency tactics. He wields very little power, however, even compared with the prime minister.


Iraq: Two Years Later
2 October 2005

In a series of articles written between June 2002 and February 2003, I predicted that if the United States invaded Iraq, it was highly unlikely that we would find any of the weapons of mass destruction or WMD programs that the Bush administration and the congressional leadership of both parties claimed Iraq possessed in their effort to justify an American takeover of that oil-rich country. I also predicted that no operational links between the Iraqi regime and al-Qaida would be found and that a U.S. invasion would encourage terrorism rather than discourage it. Finally, I predicted that we could find ourselves virtually isolated in the international community facing a bloody counter-insurgency war with no end in sight….


House Republicans and Democrats Unite Linking Iraq with 9/11
1 October 2005

On the eve of the third anniversary of 9/11, the U.S. House of Representatives–by an overwhelming, bipartisan majority of 406-16–passed a resolution linking Iraq to the al-Qaida attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. This comes despite conclusions reached by the bipartisan 9/11 Commission, a recent CIA report, and the consensus of independent strategic analysis familiar with the region that no such links ever existed.