20 years since they turned the Middle East into a permanent killing field

22 March 2023

This Monday, 20 March, was the 20th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq and the "shock-and-awe” bombing of Baghdad by US and British forces.

    As little was said about this as possible.  There were no big ceremonies to commemorate the injured and dead - just one wreath-laying on Sunday for the 179 British military personnel killed during 8 years of direct military occupation.

    Instead, the media spent hours covering the report of an arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court for Vladimir Putin, over charges that he transported Ukrainian children into Russia "illegally".

    This same ICC had said it was “out of its remit” to arrest Tony Blair in 2016, much after the event, for war crimes...  Blair was accused of having lied about the existence of “weapons of mass destruction" – when Iraq had none — and having the blood of over 100,000 Iraqi civilians and thousands of soldiers on his hands.

    To this day Blair and Bush deny responsibility.  Yet there was and still is a devastating fallout: wars in Kurdistan and Syria, the creation of AI Qaeda and ISIL and the ongoing crisis right across the whole Middle Eastern region.

    In Iraq itself, no stable government has been possible since the 2003 invasion.  The population has lived for 20 years in a political mess, amid poverty and environmental disaster.  The Islamic dictatorship in Iran has been strengthened and right-wing Israeli regimes have been bolstered in their murderous denial of the rights of Palestinians.

    So yes there's good reason to "forget" the ongoing havoc British politicians are responsible for in the Middle East, far greater in its scale and repercussions than the Ukraine war. And good reason for the working class never to trust a word they say.