The Foreign Intervention Treadmill
In 1953 the USA and the UK helped organize a coup d'état of the democratically elected Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh to help Mohammad Reza Pahlavi (more of a monarch) take the throne. Why did we do that? Well, Mosaddegh was messing with the UK's oil interests in Iran of course. So... new leader courtesy of the US and the UK!
"All fixed. Iran should work great now," said the foreign policy experts of 1953.
And maybe it did.... for a few years. But then, about 25 years later, Iranians realized that they didn't like the leader we chose for them and wanted to pick their own. So, with lots of effort, they managed to overthrow the US backed monarchy in favor of a theocratic Shah. These guys were extreme Islamists. They took a country that had been going through westernization for years and made it a theocratic and anti-Western state. Iranians kidnapped bunch of Americans in 1980 and this crisis turned Iran into the US' greatest enemy in the Persian Gulf. This nation that had been an ally of Britain for hundreds of years suddenly was labeled a huge enemy.
Wait... how did we get a theocratic leader in Iran that hated America? I thought our intervention would work?
"It is okay..." said the US foriegn policy experts, "we can fix this. "We'll prevent Iran from doing any damage by supporting their arch enemy, Iraq."
Iran and Iraq were at war by the 1980s and the US and other Western nations, in the 1980s, decided to do what was in our interest and support the secular government of Iraq on the down low.
Mike Shuster explains,
"What the Reagan administration did do to aid the war effort of Iraq was to share key battlefield intelligence, intelligence gleaned from satellite photos own by the United States with the Iraqis. And the US made available to Iraq hundreds of millions of dollars in food credits that permitted Baghdad to spend the revenues it might have needed for importing food on weapons. Iraq bought most of the weaponry, though, from the Soviet Union. France also sold Iraq important technologically advanced arms such as missiles."
We ended up giving aid to Iraq (about a billion dollars of 1983 money). And Donald Rumsfeld went over there to shake our new best bud's hand.
Yep, that is a photo of Donald "Rumy" Rumsfeld shaking hands with Saddam effin Hussain!
So... Iraq held off Iran as the west hoped. We kept Iran in check.
See? The experts know what they are doing. Good thing we supported Saddam Hussain. That guy is reasonable. Unlike those crazies in Iran.
There is that Kuwait thing. Saddam decided to attack Kuwait in 1990. Kuwait was an ally with the US and a key source of oil. What was Saddam doing??
Well, we can fix this one. George Bush Sr. got all the western nations to support and smashed Saddam. Expensive war but it worked. Iraq backed down and left Kuwait.
Well... sort of. 9/11 happened a decade later and despite the fact that Iraq had nothing to do with it, they were sort of in the region of some of the people that did and George Sr's son was now president and Don Rumy Rumsfeld was Secretary of Defense. Rumy realized that there was one problem in the region. This guy on the right:
We had to get rid of him. Who was the idiot that helped that guy in the first place?
So we did.
All is fixed. We got Saddam. He was the problem.
Except the war went on. 19 years later we were still there in Iraq. Dealing with crazies. Dealing with ISIS. Dealing with nonesense.
And then after finally things were calming down in Iraq. Our embassy there gets attacked. By people we think are associated with Iran.
Well, no problem, we can deal with this. How about we kill a leader from Iran? Soleimani was an easy target. Dead.
Problem solved. Mission accomplished.
Oops? There is going to be another response? War you say? Iran bombing our bases? Iraq asking us to leave their country?
So.... serious question.... who is so dumb that they think this intervention is still a good idea.
My advice to Trump (aka what Ungit would do if he was president):
Take Iraq up on their offer. Leave the country pronto. Let them sort it out with Iran. Let everyone sort out their own crap. Let other people police bad behavior. Recognize that predicting results of intervention is impossible and almost always wildly wrong. Avoid a war. Avoid any further action. Recognize that this intervention thing is for idiots. Go home. Patrol our own borders. Use our giant military for defense not offense.
Get off the foreign intervention treadmill. And then maybe... just maybe.... we can honestly say: