Thirteen years ago, the world began the week that saw the start of the Iraqi Invasion. This very day 13 years ago, former President of the U.S. George W. Bush lied to the whole nation (and to the whole world), stating that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). We did not know it was a lie. All the more, the prime minister of the U.K. concurred with the U.S. president to convince the world and, last July, a parliamentary commission disclosed that Tony Blair was so convinced of the presence of the nonexistent WMDs that he sent British troops into Iraq when diplomacy might still have resolved the crisis.
On March 17, 2003, two days prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq, President Bush gave a final ultimatum to Saddam Hussein, stating that he had 48 hours for him and his sons to leave Iraq. On March 19 Bush addressed the nation via live television and announced "Operation Iraqi Freedom has begun to rid Iraq of tyrannical dictator Saddam Hussein and eliminate Iraq's ability to develop weapons of mass destruction." The American-led coalition assault began with the launch of U.S. cruise missiles and precision-guided bombs aimed at Saddam's palace near Baghdad.
You might know very well what followed.
Three years later this week, on March 19, 2006, Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi said that Iraq is in the middle of a civil war. They had not reached to "the point of no return," but if the country fell apart, then sectarianism would spread across the region. But for President Bush this was not the case: The Iraqis had "had a chance to fall apart and they didn't."
Unfortunately he was lying again: Iraq had fallen apart and a sectarian war had started. This war had been perceived as Iran's Shite expansion. A geopolitical analysis firm, Stratfor (a.k.a. "the civil CIA") labeled it not a sectarian civil war but a Shiite Expansion and prophesized that it would be short-lived. So their response was to create a counter force. This is why Republican nominee Donald Trump called former President Barack Obama the father of Daesh, and Hillary Clinton the the terror group's mother. Was it just empty campaign rhetoric or dependent on some insider information? Only time (or a future Wikileaks) will tell.
So far we know this:
The former British prime minister said the U.S. president informed him that beyond a doubt there were very dangerous weapons of mass destruction in the hands of Iraqis. The secret intelligence reports he had been shown "did not justify" his certainty, as the chairman of the investigation team, Sir John Chilcot, concluded 13 years and 1.33 million deaths later that Bush and Blair were made fully aware what they were doing.
The history is not a happy subject for many. And for others it is downright embarrassing. When you dig deep enough, you will find skeletons, and some could make you hate yourself.
Now that the skeleton is out, not only these two themselves, but the whole wide world hates them too.
About the author
Hakkı Öcal is an award-winning journalist. He currently serves as academic at Ibn Haldun University.