Today is the 10th Anniversary of the Iraq War


Today marks 10 years since the U.S. began the invasion of Iraq.  We were lied into this war and countless innocent Iraqis and American troops lost their lives.  And even today, on the 10th anniversary, a wave of car bombs have killed 56 people in Iraq.

The Obama administration did successfully leave (except for contractors) as promised in the 2008 election and so now we look back on the war, the good, the bad and the ugly.

Via Think Progress:

Ten years after the first American bombs fell on Baghdad, the United States is still paying the costs for the invasion of Iraq — monetarily, strategically, psychologically and morally. The decision to launch the war is sure to be re-debatedad nauseum over the coming days. Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates said on Sunday that it’s “too soon to tell” whether the Iraq war was a success.

Here’s just five reasons why he’s wrong:

1. The debt

At the start of the war, the Bush administration predicted that it would cost around $50-60 billion in total. They were wrong by more than a factor of ten, sending the U.S.’ debt soaring, a condition that has yet to be rectified. According to a recent study, the war is set to have cost the U.S $2.2 trillion, though that number may reach up to $4 trillion thanks to interest payments on the loans taken out to finance the conflict. Of that staggering amount, at least $10 billion of it was completely wasted in rebuilding efforts.

2. The physical and psychological strain on U.S. troops.

The soldiers charged with fighting the war were stretched to their limits, put through multiple tours, with increasing length of time overseas as the war stretched on and shrinking downtime in between each. All-told, over 4,000 U.S. troops died during the country’s time in Iraq, with another 31,000 wounded in action. In the aftermath, the cost of providing medical care to veterans has doubled, adding to the difficulties faced by those who served. Up to 35 percent of Iraq War veterans will suffer from PTSD according to a 2009 study, while the suicide rate among veterans has jumped to 22 per day.

I was always opposed to the Iraq war and when this war began I was in an undergrad U.S. Foreign Policy in the Middle East class.  It’s still frustrating to me that this war happened at all despite so much evidence that the Bush administration wasn’t telling the truth about anything weapons of mass destruction.

Read the rest at ThinkProgress.

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