Victorious troops in Iraq. What victory? Imagine this picture. A bully has beaten a weak opponent to pulp. In fact he has also beaten a few bystanders who just happened to be in the vicinity by mistake to pulp. You get the picture. We’ve all seen it in some form or other.
Then take the camera away and focus on what happens a few moments/hours/weeks later and the very same bully is seen performing wondrous deeds of resuscitation of his very same victims. There are string of heroes on camera. People helping, rebuilding, restoring those pulped people.
On closer looking one realises with shock that the bullies who have beaten up the people and their property in the first instance are now shown as the heroes rebuilding and fixing the damage.
This is the scene being enacted across Iraq. I suppose one should be happy that the bullies are doing this. They certainly didn’t do much in Vietnam after they had pulped up that country.
But it really must make any half way sensitive person want to vomit. Watching the scenes of ‘courageous’ expat people rebuilding the Iraq country and trying to help the people back on their feet.
This last week, while Obama was doing his interpretation of saving the Iraqi nation, a CNN reporter was showing viewers all the so called improvements. Here is a market where a year ago nobody was selling fruit and vegetable. Here is a rebuilt school, there a restored mosque and so the story went on.
It’s strange though that nobody ever states the obvious. Before March 2003 they were selling fruit and vegetables at that market, schools were being used for the right purpose and people could pray at their local mosque.
The figures both in monetary terms and lives lost are staggering. And the result of this war? Well not really easy to work out. Because the supposed purpose of this war was to find Weapons of Mass destruction. Well those were never found.
Then that changed to the axis of evil story. Fighting terrorists et al. That didn’t quite give off the correct result either. Now there are more terror attacks on anybody and anything in Iraq on a daily basis than there ever were before March 2003.
Oh wait. It was about Iraqis attacking the USA. Well that hasn’t been proven much either. And quite frankly if they did now out of retribution for what the US has done in their country one could almost understand it.
Here are some statistics just to remind us. A book recently published states that it has cost the US over US$3 trillion. And the UK and other allied forces?
Money isn’t all, although many people tend to think so. It’s the human life factor that is more important surely. So here are just a few stats for us to consider. Some of these stats do not represent the most recent figures. So many will be even worse.
US troops killed – 4 420. wounded 31 026 – 20% of which are serious brain or spinal injuries. It is estimated that 30% of troops coming back home develop serious mental health problems within 3 months. 120 000 troops were in Iraq at the height of the ‘surge’.
141 Journalists killed. Iraqi police and soldiers killed 9 654 but the big one here is the figure for the Iraqi civilians. According to the Iraq Body Count site the figure stands at around 106 000 civilian deaths due to the war efforts. Other sites state the figures to be as high as 1.3 million. Number of displaced people in Iraq are around 2.8 million.
And the toll carries on. No matter the huge differences in the statistics. There is bound to be secrecy around the true costs of this war. Who would want to admit to these horrific statistics. But even the lowest estimates are still shocking in their scale.
So as the news programmes carry on showing the world the pull-out of troops surely somebody should put a truthful account together. Surely some editor should have the courage to focus on what horrific damage this war has done to a country. Let’s not see pictures of what has been repaired. Let’s see pictures of what Iraq looked like before the war, how it was destroyed and what damage is now left over for the Iraqis to repair. It’s not as if their economy is exactly thriving with an inflation rate of 50% and the oil price coming down.
Let’s just for once try and be honest. Difficult I know.