Iraq: So that’s it then...


So that’s it then. The Iraq War is at an end. The long awaited conclusion as the final US soldiers leave the country, closing the gate behind them with a kick.

That’s it. The end. Forget the lies. Forget the war crimes. Forget mistreating and killing defenceless prisoners. Remember the victory instead. Mr Obama needs the big-up before next year’s elections.

But, of course, the war isn’t over any more than Vietnam came to an end for the poor American vets who count their days ekeing out an existence.

In Iraq the violence continues, albeit intermittently. And there will be no comfort for the families of those who died, or those dreadfully injured in body and mind.

Media attention has, of course, been on the thousands of western soldiers that will never return. As if anyone from outside can truly grasp losing loved ones in a war so damningly dishonest, purposeless, wasteful and evil.

But nowhere is the attention given to the 150,000 Iraqis killed, a number which remains uncertain because nobody from the Alliance counted them. The same for the lack of support for the hundreds of thousands wounded or who will spend the rest of their days suffering from the effects of uranium bullets and other accursed modern war weaponry.

Is the war really at an end when the USA intend to build a gigantic embassy in Iraq with, according to some commentators, up to 13,000 employees, including private sector mercenaries who have shown themselves to be willing to shoot first and ask questions later, in the good old traditions of the Wild West?

Is the war at an end with western dominance eyeing up the loathsome Iran and Syria?

I could write volumes about Iraq, and how it has punctuated my ten years as an MP.

Plaid Cymru opposed the war from its first jingoistic origins. Later we tried to impeach Tony Blair before realizing that the other parties wouldn’t scrutinise the behaviour of a man who, incredibly, is now a peace envoy in the middle east.

George Bush’s policy appeared so pointless, filled with black humour from the moment that preparations for war in Iraq began following 9/11, on the same grounds as if after Pearl Harbour the US had begun a war with Mexico.

Was it a pointless war? No chance! The purpose was all too clear, confirming imperial power in an important strategic part of the world already cursed with considerable wealth. Woe is Syria. Woe is Iran.