The legacy of the Iraq War is becoming very clear, as the people of Iraq take to the streets to reject US-backed “democracy” in their country.
Roads, offices and schools were closed on Sunday as the protesters made a showing of strength, demonstrating to authorities that their voices will not be silenced.
The rallies were initiated on Oct. 1 due to the country’s extreme corruption and massive unemployment. A violent crackdown was initiated that killed dozens of people, but that only increased the intensity of the protests. The people of Iraq are sick and tired of the unwanted democracy bestowed upon them by neoconservative interventionists.
“We decided to cut the roads as a message to the government that we will keep protesting until the corrupt people and thieves are kicked out and the regime falls,” said Tahseen Nasser, a 25-year-old demonstrator from the eastern city of Kut.
“We’re not allowing government workers to reach their offices, just those in humanitarian fields,” he added.
The government has attempted to give concessions to the demonstrators such as a welfare giveaway, job guarantees, and new elections. The protesters are not convinced by the regime’s offers, and demand more sweeping change than the table scraps their leaders wish to give them.
“We decided on this campaign of civil disobedience because we have had it up to here with the government’s lies and promises of so-called reform,” said Mohammad al-Assadi, a striking government employee who works in the southern city of Nasiriyah.
Protesters even violently attacked an Iranian consulate on Sunday in the Shi’ite holy city of Karbala, which resulted in three deaths.
The Iranian consulate in the holy shrine city of Karbala. These scenes will be cause for deep concern in Tehran. pic.twitter.com/IqoTzCFAMV
— Ranj Alaaldin (@RanjAlaaldin) November 3, 2019
The protesters have grown frustrated with foreign influence by the Islamic Republic of Iran, which they believe is propping up their corrupt government. They are sick of intervention – whether it comes from the U.S., Iran or any other country – and just want to be able to decide their own affairs.
“No person or group, no side with a particular view, no regional or international actor may seize the will of the Iraqi people and impose its will on them,” top Iraqi Shia leader Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani said in his weekly sermon, adding that there will be “civil conflict, chaos and destruction” if authorities continue to crackdown on protesters.
The neocons once said – in the run-up to the war and shortly afterward – that there would be peace and harmony once democracy was delivered to Iraq.
“America believes that all people are entitled to hope and human rights, to the non-negotiable demands of human dignity. America is a friend to the people of Iraq. Our demands are directed only at the regime that enslaves them and threatens us. The long captivity of Iraq will end, and an era of new hope will begin,” President George W. Bush said in Oct. 2002 before the war was launched.
“What we did in Iraq was exactly the right thing to do. If I had it to recommend all over again, I would recommend exactly the same course of action,” former Vice President Dick Cheney said in 2004 when the war was already growing unpopular.
‘Forwarding freedom is always important, but it is especially important where doing so ensures America’s future security — as in Iraq. Maintaining American empire will require Americans to recognize the dangers of impatient isolationism,” commentator Ben Shapiro wrote in a Townhall op/ed in 2005.
The results in Iraq are proving that the neocons were dead wrong about the Iraq War, which President Donald Trump has called the ‘worst single mistake’ in U.S. history, and their interventionist policies continue to plague Iraq and the Middle East with no end in sight.