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[…] With the U.S. now mired in a Mesopotamian morass because of what is described as a 'unilateralist' foreign policy, the UN's multilateralist approach is gaining unearned prestige and unwarranted credibility" (Grigg, 2006). While the UN might not have masterminded the war, they certainly participated in the events that led up to the invasion, so they did play an important role in arguments for the invasion, and now they are benefiting, which does not seem right, somehow.
Many members of NATO, including France, Germany, and Belgium opposed the war, and they protested sending any NATO troops into Iraq for any cause. Another writer notes, in July during a trip to Washington, Robertson told U.S. lawmakers that NATO would not go beyond providing logistical support for the Polish-led force in Iraq" (Dettmer, 2003). The Polish forces were peacekeepers sent in to assist British and American forces. While NATO seems to have healed over the war, there is still distrust in those that opposed the war, and that distrust has lead to them distancing themselves from Washington D.C. And the Bush administration. It will probably take more time for them to build up any trust in the United States again.
The Human Rights Argument
As the war dragged on and no one found WMD, human rights became the focus of the administration as a reason to continue the war. Miller states, "In response to the administration's failure to uncover WMD, Bush increasingly turned to the rescue rationale. For that reason, and because many of the war's defenders also embraced rescue as the strongest basis for the invasion and occupation of Iraq, it invites ethical scrutiny" (Miller, 2008). That is one of the justifications for the ongoing war, as well. The administration argued that the Iraqi people were not ready to govern themselves or defend themselves from opposing forces, and "liberating" them from their despotic leader, Saddam Hussein, became the goal of the invasion. The administration also believed that leaving Iraq could lead to civil war in the country. Writer Grigg continues, "Defenders of the administration's policy maintain that 'cutting and running' now would fatally undermine our nation's prestige, and trigger a civil war in Iraq. But according to Israeli strategist and military historian Martin van Creveld, one of the world's most respected military analysts, an ignominious withdrawal is inevitable, and civil war may be as well" (Grigg, 2006). Therefore, no matter how long we remain in Iraq due to human rights issues, the country may dissolve into anarchy when we leave, making our purpose their largely questionable.
The Bottom Line
In the end, there were several reasons devised to explain just why the United States invaded Iraq in 2003 and continues its operations there. However, most experts feel those reasons have not been justified. Miller notes, "But for empirical and moral reasons, the Iraq war lacks a just cause. There is not, nor was there at the time, sufficient evidence to say that the United States was in danger from Iraq" (Miller, 2008). Another set of writers note, "What is particularly disturbing about the Iraq War is how long the Bush Administration stuck to details from the initial mythology (Weapons of Mass Destruction, pre-war Iraqi links to al-Qaeda) long after news organizations had carried substantial refutations of those claims" (Harmon & Muenchen, 2009). They speculate the administration might have actually begun to believe their own spin on the war, and believe it was true, even when it had been proven completely inaccurate. Even high-ranking military leaders believe the war was a mistake. Another writer states, "Lieutenant General William Odom (Ret.) describes the war as 'the greatest strategic disaster in our history' -- not in terms of its present body count, but rather because of its radiating consequences for the region and the world" (Grigg, 2006). The war showed the aggressive and imperialistic side of the United States, something the country had managed to hide for many years, and it made many foreign powers feel we had overstepped our bounds and we were acting like militaristic bullies.
Dettmer, J. (2003). NATO suffering from identity crisis. Retrieved 7 May 2010 from the FindArticles.com Web site: http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1571/is_2003_Sept_16/ai_107543546/.
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Grigg, W.N. (2006, January 9). Bring 'em home! The New American, 22, 12+.
Harmon, M., & Muenchen, R. (2009). Semantic framing in the build-up to the Iraq War. ETC.: A Review of General Semantics, 66(1), 12+.
Lobe, J. (2009). Why did the U.S. invade Iraq? Retrieved 7 May 2010 from the IPSnews.net Web site: http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=41643.
Miller, R.B. (2008). Justifications of the Iraq War examined. Ethics…[continue]
"U S In Iraq Bush Administration" (2010, May 07) Retrieved December 5, 2016, from http://www.paperdue.com/essay/us-in-iraq-bush-administration-2817
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