Suppression of the 1991 Uprising:
"rebels captured the Central Security headquarters. Inside, they found torture devices
smeared with blood and rooms holding the corpses of strangled women and children,
victims of Saddam's executioners.
In retaliation, the rebels massacred any Ba'ath officials and police officers they could find.
Soon came the counterattack from Baghdad. Saddam's Republican Guard fought the resistance in Karbala. Civilians and rebels fled the city. On the roads leading out,
Iraqi army helicopter crews poured kerosene on the refugees, then set them on fire.
American aircraft circled high overhead, watching.
There were mass executions of civilians, some of whom were tied to tanks and used as human shields.
In Karbala, some of Shiite Islam's holiest shrines were destroyed.
Others were used as centers for murder, torture and rape."
Victor Davis Hanson
notes how this lyncher of Iraqi Jews
and gasser of the Kurds
was always treated with respect by the western media,
as if he were a real statesman.
With excellent accuracy in Feb 2003 before the war
he describes how western
"stayed glued to their seats to coax answers from a two-bit fascist soon to be
in a cell at the Hague".
He was right.
Aziz was in US custody by April,
as his genocidal regime was destroyed.
Scott Ritter saw a children's prison in Iraq
- "The prison in question is at the General Security Services headquarters,
which was inspected by my team in Jan 1998.
It appeared to be a prison for children - toddlers
up to pre-adolescents -
whose only crime was to be the offspring of those who have spoken out politically against the regime
of Saddam Hussein. It was a horrific scene. Actually I'm not going to describe what I saw there
because what I saw was so horrible that it can be used by those who would want to promote war with Iraq"
In Saddam's suppression of the 1991 uprising,
"Children who would not give their parents' names to soldiers
were doused with gasoline and set on fire.
Security forces also burned entire families in their houses when they would not give or did not know the location of the head of the household."
Sasson's book is useful,
but somewhat spoiled by her support for the
Kuwaiti royal family.
She even calls the unelected Emir's regime
the "legitimate government".
Liberating Kuwait from the Iraqi occupation
was worth doing,
for at least half a dozen reasons,
but the victory was tarnished by the fact that:
(a) Saddam stayed in power,
(b) The Kuwaiti royal family stayed in power.
Still, part of the deal was that the
Kuwaiti parliament be restored,
and Kuwait today is one of the better countries in the Arab world.
Freedom House now ranks Kuwait as
One thing to note is that, even if we accept Lopez's point
about deaths after the war due to damage to infrastructure,
and sanctions, then over 90 percent of Iraqi deaths
were caused because the war was aborted
- because Iraq was not liberated.
Had it been liberated, these deaths would not have occurred.
Deadlier Than War, Walter Russell Mead, March 12, 2003,
on the disaster of the 1991 Gulf War:
"Morally, politically, financially, containing Iraq"
[instead of defeating it]
"is one of the costliest failures in the history
of American foreign policy."
Other American wars
Remember that the worst civilian death toll by America
and its democratic allies
was not in the Gulf War
or in Vietnam
but in what everyone agrees is
the "just" war
World War 2.
So given the horrendous civilian death toll
of the (D-Day) invasion of France,
should Europe not have been liberated?
In these discussions, it should also be remembered
(but rarely is) that
in both Vietnam and WW2, American and British democide
largely irrelevant to the overall democide.
In both wars, 98-99 percent
of the democide was carried out
by the non-democracies.
I don't support sanctions
I support invading their countries and ending their regimes.
But I must note that the left were WRONG about what was
going on with the Iraq sanctions.
What was going on was that
Saddam was making his own people suffer
for propaganda purposes
(to get the sanctions lifted, so he could pursue WMD and aggression).
And it worked, with
the idiots of Europe and the left
"Doctors said they were forced to refrigerate dead babies in hospital
morgues until authorities were ready to gather the little corpses
for monthly parades in coffins on the roofs
of taxis for the benefit of Iraqi state television
and visiting journalists."
"I am one of the doctors who was forced to tell something wrong
[to visiting peace activists]
- that these children died from the fault of the UN. ...
I am afraid if I tell the true thing ...
They will kill me. Me and my family and my uncle and my aunt - everyone."
Why, 70 years after Stalin's show trials, does the western left
still believe what the terrified, unfree people under a dictatorship say?
The left says Iraqi sanctions "killed 500,000 children".
But in fact sanctions may have killed no one at all.
The Saddam regime was even more evil than the right imagined.
All through the sanctions period, the Saddam regime was, it turns out, simply
stealing food, medicine and other aid sent to Iraq,
and selling it for profit.
The regime grew enormously rich through the sanctions period.
The suffering of their people was of no interest to them.
The Iraqi blog
Iraq the Model
on the election where
they would kill anyone who voted
- and the brave Iraqi people stood up to them
and voted in their millions:
- ".. those who opposed the elections and resisted the change will have to deal with the new reality.
In 48 hours from now,
the dying dictatorships and their filthy tools, the terrorists,
will find themselves facing an elected legitimate government in Iraq.
The tyrants nightmare is becoming reality, now they will have to deal with the scariest word in their dictionaries;
THE PEOPLE'S CHOICE.
The terrorists have challenged the bravery of the Iraqi people but they messed with the wrong people.
The people have accepted the challenge; democracy and elections are not a luxury for Iraqis,
it's an issue of life or death.
On Sunday, the sun will rise on the land of Mesopotamia. I can't wait, the dream is becoming true
and I will stand in front of the box to put my heart in it."
The people have won
- A democrat describes voting for the first time:
"We had all kinds of feelings in our minds while we were on our way to the ballot box
except one feeling that never came to us, that was fear.
We could smell pride in the atmosphere this morning; everyone we saw was holding up his
blue tipped finger with broad smiles on the faces while walking out of the center.
I couldn't think of a scene more beautiful than that.
Is there a bigger victory than this? I believe not.
I still recall the first group of comments that came to this blog 14 months ago
when many of the readers asked "The Model?" ... "Model for what?"
Take a look today to meet the model of courage and human desire to achieve freedom;
people walking across the fire to cast their votes.
Could any model match this one!? Could any bravery match the Iraqis'!?
Let the remaining tyrants of the world learn the lesson from this day."
The day after
- Iraq showed yesterday how much it hates the terrorists.
".. this victory is represented now by the feeling of Iraqis that freedom lovers
and democracy supporters are the majority and they're everywhere and
that there exists a strong unity among Iraqis against terror threats.
Every person has realized that he's not fighting alone in this battle and that
all Iraq, from the very north to the very south is sharing this view"
It is now time to:
"find the best way to exterminate the terrorists and the criminals
who we know now how few and isolated they are."
by John Podhoretz
- The American left is gutted today.
Another anti-American Irish leftist,
Richard Boyd Barrett, says: "US claims to have brought democracy to Iraq are laughable."
- The anti-American extremist
19 February, 2005,
the Iraqi election as
"an unobserved, unverified, illegitimate, cynically manipulated election,
held under a brutal occupation",
and sneers at its claims to be
"democratic" and "free and fair".
"No one in the United States should try to over-hype this election."
- John Kerry.
Thank heavens that cynical, negative defeatist lost.
What if Bush has been right about Iraq all along?
by Mark Brown
- One opponent of the war starts to have doubts as he watches the joyous election.
He's worried that the left may have got onto the wrong side of history.
"If it turns out Bush was right all along, this is going to require some serious penance.
Maybe I'd have to vote Republican in 2008."
Now Iraq has tasted democracy, the Arab tyrants are shaking in their shoes,
February 15, 2005
- "The Arab despots and their friends in the West make a meal of the cliche
that democracy cannot be imposed by force. But what happened in Iraq was not imposing democracy by force. The US-led alliance used force to remove impediments to democracy.
The people of Iraq became the co-liberators of their country,
first by not opposing the US-led coalition and then by risking their lives to set their nation on a new path in the face of vicious terrorism.
It is time to see what is happening in Iraq on its own merits, not in the context of an irrational hatred of the United States and George W. Bush. Like it or not, President Bush has got one thing right: give any nation a chance to choose democracy and it will."
Iraq election, Mar 2010. The remnant scum of the Iraqi resistance throw hand grenades at voters and bomb a polling station.
An Iraqi woman risks death to vote in Iraq's first election, 2005.
Yes, she's probably a Shia religious conservative.
But it's a start.
It's the first step.
on opinion polls after liberation:
"So what we now know is that on the day of the anti-war
with all the caveats ...
a majority of Iraqis were saying:
"Better this invasion than what we faced otherwise."
They would not have been marching with you. They would have been marching for the invasion."
When asked what country they would want Iraq to be like -
Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Egypt or the
the US was the no.1 answer.
The majority want to punish the Baath Party rather than forgive their crimes.
The majority want America to stay longer.
The gulf between
Iraqis and their appalling Arab neighbours
who supported the tyrant:
What Iraqis think of their fellow Arabs
- "The grim reality, particularly hard to hear for all those Arabs that felt they were
supporting their Iraqi brethren when demonstrating to stop the war, is that most
people here don't want anything to do with them.
In contrast, the US spilled the blood of its own people to liberate them from
Arab Fighters Say Iraqis Sold Them Out to U.S.
- A loony Islamofascist foreign volunteer finds out what
Iraqis really think of people like him.
"Ahmed Abdel Razzaq went to Iraq to fight the
Americans and die a martyr. He ended up in a U.S. prison camp after the Iraqis he
went to defend captured and sold him for $100."
The majority who expressed an opinion
supported the US invasion.
The majority think
things are better now than before the war.
The majority oppose an Islamic state.
80 percent oppose the fascist "resistance".
The majority want America to stay longer.
Who knows better: the Iraqi people or Spain's new PM?
- discussion of the above survey
by Janet Daley.
Why does the socialist government of Spain
listen to Al Qaeda on Iraq,
instead of to the Iraqi people?
Why do they do Al Qaeda's bidding on Iraq,
instead of the bidding of the people of Iraq?
200,000 protest in Jordan against al-Qa'eda
after Zarqawi bombed them.
"True, he did manage to kill a couple of dozen Muslims. But what's the strategic value of that?
Presumably, it's an old-fashioned mob heavy's way of keeping the locals in line.
And that worked out well, didn't it? Hundreds of thousands of Zarqawi's fellow Jordanians
fill the streets to demand his death."
"Did they show that on the BBC? Or are demonstrations only news when they're anti-Bush and anti-Blair?
And look at it this way: if the "occupation" is so unpopular in Iraq,
where are the mass demonstrations against that?
I'm not talking 200,000, or even 100 or 50,000.
But, if there were just 1,500 folks shouting "Great Satan, go home!" in Baghdad or Mosul,
it would be large enough for the media to do that little trick where they film the demo
close up so it looks like the place is packed. Yet no such demonstrations take place."
I never liked the whining Iraqi blogger
I couldn't put my finger on why not.
James Lileks nails it down.
sneering at Bush, Nov 2003,
"Hey, Salam? Fuck you.
there's a picture on the front page of my local paper today:
third Minnesotan killed in Iraq.
He died doing what
you never had the stones to do: pick up a rifle and
face the Ba'athists. You owe him.
would have spent the rest of your life under
the Saddam regime would have prospered into the
next generation precisely because of people like
It's been a good year,
Mark Steyn, The Spectator,
13 December 2003 -
"Incredible. At the beginning of this year Salam Pax was just another typical
oppressed Baghdadi, four of whose relatives had
"gone missing" ... But a couple of weeks in the company of Guardian
editors and he's been transformed into a note-perfect,
He sounds like a Channel 4 commissioning editor.
... personally I find it heartening: if the Americans can't
transform Iraq into New Hampshire,
this snotty little twerp is living proof
that you can at least turn it into Islington."
"[Under Saddam's tyranny]
most of us had little idea or sense about life beyond our borders.
We did believe, however, that democracy and human rights were important factors in Western civilization.
So it came as a shock to us when millions of people began demonstrating across the world
against America's build-up to the invasion of our country. We supposed the protests were by people
who had no idea about the terrible atrocities that the regime had inflicted upon us for decades."
"After those, and many other, experiences, we finally comprehended how little
we had in common with these "peace activists" who constantly decried American crimes,
and hated to listen to us talk about the terrible long nightmare
that ended with the collapse of the regime. We came to understand how these
"humanitarians" experienced a sort of pleasure
terrorists or former remnants of the regime
created destruction in Iraq
- just so they could feel that they were right, and the Americans wrong!
This was very disappointing for someone like me, who thought for decades that the Left
was generally the progressive power in the world."
"The second message is quite simple and one that I would like to deliver directly from my people to yours:
Thank you, America. We Iraqis know that Americans have made and continue to make enormous sacrifices
to liberate Iraq, to assure Iraq's freedom. I have come here to thank you and to promise you that your sacrifices
are not in vain."
"I stand here today as the prime minister of a country emerging finally from dark ages of violence,
aggression, corruption and greed. Like almost every Iraqi, I have many friends who were murdered, tortured or raped
by the regime of Saddam Hussein. Well over a million Iraqis were murdered or are missing. We estimate at least 300,000
in mass graves, which stands as monuments to the inhumanity of Saddam's regime.
My friends, today we are better off, you are better off and the world is better off without Saddam Hussein.
Your decision to go to war in Iraq was not an easy one but it was the right one."
"There are no words that can express the debt of gratitude that future generations of Iraqis will owe to Americans.
It would have been easy to have turned your back on our plight, but this is not the tradition of this great country.
Not for the first time in history you stood up with your allies for freedom and democracy."
"Now we are determined to honor your confidence and sacrifice by putting into practice in Iraq
the values of liberty and democracy, which are so dear to you and which have triumphed over tyranny across our world.
Creating a democratic, prosperous and stable nation, where differences are respected, human rights protected,
and which lives in peace with itself and its neighbor, is our highest priority
It is a vision, I assure you, shared by the vast majority of the Iraqi people.
But there are
the tiny minority who despise the very ideas of liberty,
of peace, of tolerance,
and who will kill anyone, destroy anything, to prevent Iraq and its people from achieving this goal.
Among them are
those who nurse fantasies of the former regime returning to power.
fanatics who seek to impose a perverted vision of Islam
in which the face of Allah cannot be seen.
And there are
terrorists, including many from outside Iraq,
who seek to make our country the main battleground against freedom, democracy and civilization.
these murderers have no political program or cause other than push our country back into tyranny."
"I appeal to you, who have done so much already to help us, to ensure they don't succeed.
Do not allow them to say to Iraqis, to Arabs, to Muslims, that we have only two models of governments,
brutal dictatorship and religious extremism. This is wrong. Like Americans, we Iraqis want to enjoy the fruits of liberty.
Half of the world's 1.5 billion Muslims already enjoy democratically elected governments."
And if this works, Iraq will become a great ally of America:
"As generous as you have been, we will stand with you, too. As stalwart as you have been, we will stand with you, too.
Neither tyranny nor terrorism has a place in our region or our world.
And that is why we Iraqis will stand by you, America,
in a war larger than either of our nations,
the global battle to live in freedom."
The faces of Iraq's enemies
(most of the western left,
most of the western media,
most of the Democratic Party, and Old Europe)
burn with shame
listening to this speech.
The Archbishop attacks the negative defeatism of the Western media:
"Western newspapers and broadcasters are simply peddling propaganda and misinformation.
Why is there so much noise and debate coming out from the West when before, under Saddam,
there were no free elections, but no one said a thing?"
He says: "There is no organized resistance.
Those who commit such violence are resisting against Iraqis who want to build their country.
Iraqis instead are resisting against terrorism and are not carrying out attacks,
which instead are the work of foreign infiltrators. I have stressed this before:
Saudis, Jordanians, Syrians and Sudanese have entered Iraq.
Prime Minister Allawi has said this as well."
He attacks Europe's shameful lack of support for the struggling Iraqi democrats:
"Europe is absent, it's not out there; the United States is on its own."
Europe must join in and
"help to encourage a new form of culture which is open to coexistence,
the acceptance of others, respect for the human person and for other cultures.
Europe must understand that there is no time to waste on marginal or selfish interests:
The entire world needs peace.
The Middle East needs help to rediscover peace and usher the Muslim countries
into contemporary society, with its foundation of democracy and freedom.
If the Iraqi model fails, it will be a disaster for everyone.
These terrorist groups will gain strength around the world."
Chrenkoff summarises all the good news from Iraq
that the media don't want you to hear,
and then sums up the modern world:
"The bombs are deadly, but the perception that in Iraq today there is nothing else
but the bombs could prove even deadlier in the long run
- for the Iraqis, the Middle East, and the West."
The Iraqi economy has been a rollercoaster ride up and down,
driven by oil prices, sanctions and wars.
Angus Maddison gives the following stats.
GDP per capita
(1990 $) was:
1950 - 1,364
1955 - 2,298
1960 - 2,735
1965 - 3,288
1970 - 3,473
1975 - 4,315
1980 - 6,377
1985 - 3,932
1990 - 2,458
1995 - 945
2000 - 1,221
2003 - 1,023
2005 - 962
2008 - 1,049
from the IMF, are different to Angus Maddison's numbers for 2003-08.
Iraq's GDP per capita growing steadily after Saddam was deposed in 2003,
despite the insurgents' war.
GDP per capita fell back after America left and ISIS took over.
It took off again when ISIS were defeated.
Saddam is gone,
but Iraq is still rated
This does not mean the war was a failure, since
the war removed a direct threat to the west.
But it does tarnish the victory, unless something better
can be built.
Will Iraq (or any Arab country) ever be "Free"?
The leading Shia cleric
has supported democracy
and opposed the "resistance",
and that is great,
but he also
gays should be killed:
"sodomites should be killed in the worst manner possible".
Sistani also says that
non-Muslims like me are najis (unclean):
"The entire body of a Kafir, including his hair and nails,
and all liquid substances of his body, are najis."
What a nutcase.
Andrew C. McCarthy says,
Sistani likes elections because he can see that Shiites are the majority,
but to believe Sistani is really an ally of ours in this war against Islamic medievalism
"is to hallucinate".
Even in the ultra-pro-American Kurdish north,
things are still very bleak by western standards.
In response to death threats against
for his book
Sex, Sharia and Women in the History of Islam,
Kurdistan Regional Government's
Minister of Religious Issues
supported the threats:
"we will give those who attack our prophets a sentence
so that they can be a lesson for everyone".
A lesson, alright, in how Kurdistan is not a free society.
A lesson in how the pessimists and isolationists were right after all
and Middle Eastern Muslims are not ready for freedom.
Iraq backs Israel boycott, 2006.
Shame on the Iraqi government.
Shame on them.
And again in 2007.
As Charles Johnson (when he was good) said:
"Why are Americans fighting and dying to support this disgusting behavior?"
Iraq forces Ramadan on everyone, including on non-Muslims, report July 2012.
Iraq bans liquor stores for the whole month of Ramadan.
Iraq orders all restaurants closed during the day for the whole month of Ramadan.
Iraq arrests atheists, March 2018.
Iraqi judge issues arrest warrants for four atheists for
"holding seminars during social gatherings to promote the idea of the nonexistence of God and to spread and popularize atheism."
The election of
was the beginning of the end of the dream that Iraq would become a better place.
Allied to Shia Iran.
Supporter of Shia Hezbollah.
Hater of Israel.
Al-Sadr's sectarian Shia death squads.
Persecution of Sunni.
This makes Iraqi civil war start up again
and leads to rise of Islamic State.
Shame on the Iraqi people for choosing this.
Nouri al-Maliki's gushing praise for Hezbollah and hatred of Israel, Jan 2015.
"The Zionist criminals and vampires must know that the pure blood of the martyrs
... will augment the resistance ...
I offer congratulations and condolences to the martyrs' families, Hezbollah glorious fighters and to you over this great martyrdom."
The marine who pulled down the statue of Saddam in Apr 2003 reflects on it 10 years later, in Mar 2013.
He is unimpressed by how Iraq turned out.
And he is clear-sighted enough to blame the Iraqis, not just the West.
"But the Iraq that's cozying up to Iran and still splintered by sectarian strife is not the country his buddies died for, he said.
"What do these people want?" he wondered. "I feel they really don't know what they want. They didn't want Saddam in power. But they don't seem to want democracy either.""
Even if Iraq is still not a free society,
the war was still worth it for many other reasons.
But it is a much bleaker scenario.
It suggests that Arabs and Kurds aren't ready for the modern world, and may not be for centuries.
I refuse to believe this. I hope it's not true.
"Miss Baghdad" Pageant in Iraq, 2010.
A glimpse of a different type of Iraq.
An Iraq that doesn't slaughter people for having the "wrong" religion, or being gay, or "improperly" dressed.
And have you ever seen a beauty pageant that made a more dramatic, brave, feminist statement?
These women are standing up to the religious fanatics who would dress them in sacks.
You Owe Us An Apology,
by an Iraqi blogger
furious with the rest of the world
for letting Saddam survive for so long
[couple of typos corrected].
He speaks, I think, for millions of people suffering and
frustrated in the unfree world.
Why can't we just liberate them all, now:
"I don't know really know why Saddam's regime lasted for over three decades,
but I am sure as an Iraqi who survived that period
that there was no legal or moral justifications
for it to remain.
I was counting days and hours waiting to see an end to that regime,
just like all those who suffered the cruelty of that brutal regime.
Throughout these decades I lost trust in the world governments
and international committees.
Terms like (human rights, democracy and liberty, etc.) became hollow and meaningless
those who keep repeating these words are liars..liars..liars.
I hated the U.N
and the security council and
Russia and France and Germany
and the Arab nations and the islamic conference.
I've hated George Galloway
and all those marched in the millionic demonstrations against the war.
It is I who was oppressed and I don't want any one to talk on behalf of me,
I, who was eager to see rockets falling on Saddam's nest to set me free,
What hurt me more and kept my wound bleeding was that they gave Saddam a tribune
.. and offered him a diplomatic representation
almost all-over the world to broadcast his
filthy propaganda and sprinkle Iraq's wealth on his supporters.
I really didn't understand those countries demands to take away our misery.
Did they really think that the sanctions were the cause?
We were not even human, Saddam wiped off our humanity,
we were just numbers
Believe me, we were living in the "kingdom of horror".
Can anyone tell me why the world let Saddam remain and stood against America's will to topple him?
Till when will the charts of human rights remain incompulsory,
cancel them, because they remind you of your big disgrace.
Keep giving time and tribunes to regimes like those in Syria, Yemen,
and Libya to justify their presence.
To me I don't recognize your committees
and I have no time to listen to that nonsense,
I've got a long way to walk building my country and helping
my people forget the days of abasement.
You all owe the Iraqi people an apology."
Who I block on Twitter:
I will debate almost anyone.
I love ideas.
I will not debate (and will block) people who:
(a) target my job,
(b) target my appearance, or:
(c) libel me.
Also, since 2016, abusive reporting has become a thing.
I was targeted with abusive reporting by
an Israel-hater pretending to be "Jewish".
So I now also block:
(d) any account that even hints that it reports its enemies,
(e) any Israel-hater that claims to be Jewish.
It is just self-defence.