UI – Part 450 – American Presidents – Iraq – Saddam – 911 – A Legacy
Bush 41 – Iraq
Saddam Hussein was a dictator assuming the Presidency of Iraq in 1979. He was a secularist more than an Islamist. The Hashemite monarchy was overthrown in 1959 with many subsequent factions, from communists to Baathists ruling at different times. In 1968 the Baathists took full control. Saddam was a Baathist. The country enjoyed many advances during the period 1968 to 1991 while at the same time ruled by the decree of a dictator. There were many dictators in the Middle East. They were tyrants and selfish, but they did provide. In Iraq electricity and clean water was available throughout the country. Education had become universal and food supplies were abundant. A strong infrastructure was in place. Improvement of human rights for women was quite evident. The momentum for much of the advancements and modernity came from the past presence of the British and American investments during a time of relative calm and stability. However under Saddam’s rule internal security became more vicious. He was not a benevolent dictator. He was alert to his opposition and prepared to eliminate in a ruthless manner.
H. W. Bush was president of the United States from 1989 to 1992. In 1990 Iraq invaded its neighbor Kuwait. Thinking America was indifferent as to Arab-Arab relationships Saddam proceeded with his invasion. Bush 41 mounted a public relations campaign using false data to gather support for America’s involvement to thwart Iraq’s takeover of Kuwait and their oil fields. One side of the story is told in the book, Lying for Empire, by David Model, written in 2005. Bombs fell at Bush’s command on much of Iraq destroying advances by the military. At the same time much of the the infrastructure was demolished and the economy nose-dived. This all added to the hardships the residents were experiencing under Hussein. The apocalyptic destruction of Iraq, its civilian life and a halt to a burgeoning economy was the collateral damage engendered by a desire to have Saddam stop his takeover of Kuwait. Did America go too far? Iran was basically obliterated into a pre-industrialized nation. City life came to an end, transportation systems became piles of twisted steel and rubble. Hospitals, schools, health centers, mosques and bridges were destroyed. The darkness that fell on Iraq halted any future progress towards modernity. In 1991 Saddam withdrew from Kuwait across oil fields that were set ablaze. Post war restrictions, an embargo on supplies to Iraq, did not help this country or its residents recover.
Clinton – Iraq
Every President after Bush 41 appears to have gotten into action against Saddam and/or Iraq. Clinton (1993-2000) never invaded but dropped bombs on suspected WMD supplies, mostly sites with stores of chemical weapons. No-fly zones were established grounding Saddam’s air force. ‘Containment’ of Saddam was voiced by Madelyn Albright, the SOS.
In 1996 Clinton, while in the Philippines, avoided assassination because of valued intelligence reports. Al Qaeda, Osama Bin Laden the mastermind, was behind multiple attempts that alert secret service discovered. This information was kept secret until just recently. Clinton did not go after the areas where Al Qaeda was fermenting into a viable terrorist faction. Al Qaeda had agents located in Iraq.
Bush 43 – Iraq – Afghanistan – Pakistan
Bush 43 (2001-2008), after 9/11, finished what his father began. He called for an invasion that began in March 2003. Bush and his advisers felt Saddam was behind the WTC attacks. It was suspected and agreed by Congress that Iraq had WMD’s that needed to be destroyed. Clinton alluded to that fact during his Administration. Nuclear weapons were a possibility. Chemical weapons were a reality. Al Qaeda in Afghanistan was also on the radar for attack. With nuclear weapons in Pakistan and concerns over the ideological posture of the ISI (Pakistan’s Inter-service Intelligence) a stolen dirty bomb coming next to harm the West was a concern. Bush weighed the priorities. Eliminate the Taliban, al Qaeda or destroy Saddam, in what order? The Taliban at the time ruled Afghanistan. Al Qaeda was growing with militants becoming radicalized. They were trained militarily in Pashtun. Al Qaeda wanted to reform, via jihad, the Muslim world, not just Afghanistan.
Hatred towards America became the motivation that gave Osama Bin Laden (OBL) and his quest recognition. Destructive events, many, in prior years did not bring the attention that 9/11 provided Al Qaeda. From that OBL received funding and support and was able to further develop his organization. American troops were deployed in large numbers to both regions. Saddam was captured in December 2003. He was executed for crimes against humanity in December 2006. Taliban losses along with American and UN forces in major Afghan cities took control away for the oppressive Islamists.
Obama – OBL – Iraq
Obama continued the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. During his tenure Osama Bin Laden was located (in Abbottabad, Pakistan). Navy Seals were deployed to kill him. That was in 2011. With a semblance of stability in Iraq Obama withdrew all American troops which was completed in December 2011. Political turmoil between Shiite and Sunni factions made it difficult to maintain a stable government. The Shia leader, Maliki, soon after left his post as Prime Minister (2014). He was pressured by Sunni insurgents and Kurdish activists. His replacement was Abadi (Shia).
Al Qaeda had a presence in Iraq (AQI) and morphed into or joined forces with other leaders to form the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Obama closed a prisoner prison, Camp Bucca, in September, 2009. The current leader of ISIS, al-Baghdadi and his chief deputy, al-Turkmani, were both incarcerated there.
Obama was less inclined towards an overthrow of regimes in the regions. He wanted to develop respect and trusted relationships. His style would be
classified as ‘appeasement.’ With a background in Islam from years spent during his youth in Indonesia and an
education received in schools there offering Islamic principles, you would expect a greater understanding of the thinking and ways of devout, fundamental, political Islamists.
Employing Takiyya the Islamists can lie to others, especially non-Islamists, if it aides their cause and objectives for Allah. Same applies to oaths or agreements made. In addition kitman permits deception, diversion and avoidance; as for a politician providing a lengthy answer to a question asked having naught to do with the question and more to advance their platform.
When in office Obama seldom addressed offenses against non-Muslims, yet they took place, not just in Iraq. A significant decline in the number of Christians living in Iraq during his 8 years provides evidence of their need to seek safer places.
Resisting advisors who suggested support of the Green Movement in Iran, favoring his relationship with the Ayatollah, showed Obama’s penchant to appease.
Do you think appeasing a Mullah would alter their heartfelt and vocal tirade of hate towards America? Has it helped our relationship and trust with the people, the majority, of Iran? Obama’s diminishing of America’s stature in the world, his caressing of Islamist regimes and leaders, his rhetoric as to foreign policy at variance to his actions, and his treating the office of President as more ceremonial than real will be reflected in his legacy.
Grace and Peace