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Cary Brunswick

June 24, 2014

We shouldn't be surprised by Iraq's turmoil

“It’s clear the violence will not end until there is hardly anybody left to fight or die in a civil war our government blindly did not foresee.’’

 Cary Brunswick, April 28, 2007

It is hard to believe our government is considering more military involvement in a civil war that we should have known was going to occur when we proceeded with our foolhardy invasion.

Yes, we all know President Barack Obama believes we must support the Iraqi government we helped install after President George W. Bush’s war forced a “regime change.’’ And now some are saying we need another regime change to help prevent the insurgents from militarily securing one.

“History will show, history and time will prove that the United States made the absolute right decision in freeing the people of Iraq from the clutches of Saddam Hussein,” President Bush said in June 2003. Let’s hope the ink hasn’t dried on those new history books.

We thought we would prepare Iraq for democracy, without really knowing if it were possible for any country to be a dictatorship one year and self-governing the next. And I’m afraid we really didn’t understand the nationalism the American presence and the fall of Saddam would ignite in the fundamentalist Muslim sects.

We like to believe in the separation of church and state and sometimes it is hard for us to comprehend the intimate connection between the two in the Muslim world. We should have known that, after we withdrew, there would be no long-term stability without civil war.

According to The Wall Street Journal in October 2006:

“The ethnic bloodletting that has haunted Iraq for months roared to a murderous new pitch in recent days, as Shiites conducted a violent purge of Sunnis in a city north of Baghdad and bombing attacks continued to plague the capital.

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Cary Brunswick

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