Monday, June 16, 2014

Another war in Iraq?

I protested outside Peter Costello's residence with about 30 other people when John Howard committed Australia to the war in Iraq "against Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction".  At the time, I was concerned that military intervention in Iraq would create ongoing instability in the Middle East and exacerbate terrorism.

Imagine if another nation came to Australia and waged war against us because they thought we were up to no good!

So George Bush, Tony Blair and John Howard had their war, without approval from the United Nations, and with no compelling evidence that WMDs were still there.

They may have won some battles, but they were never going to "win the war".

Tens of thousands of Iraquis died.

Sectarian communities such as the Shiites, the Sunnis and the Kurds have become even more polarised

The attempt to force western-style democracy on Iraq has failed.  The dominant Shiite majority has not formed consensus among minorities and corruption is an ongoing problem.

There has been regular suicide bombings and improvised roadside bombs - these have been conducted by "insurgents" - including locals who hate being occupied.

Now ISIS has displaced the shaky Iraqui government forces from the North and are moving towards Baghdad.  A civil war has now started.

Tony Abbott stated to Obama during his visit to the United States that he "wouldn't rule out Australia participating (again) in another military intervention" and that "Australia would support the United States".  So it appears he thinks the decision to commit Australia to another foreign war is his alone, rather than the Australian Parliament.

I don't think any political party (or its Party Room) should have the right to make this decision. I believe that a 75% vote of all Australian parliamentarians should be required for this.

If Australia, the United States and Great Britain go back to Iraq for another war this will solve nothing and create more problems like those we have already seen.

It would be an unwinnable war with catastrophic consequences. 

No comments: