The United States has personally witnessed its disastrous foreign policy in West Asia in the twenty-first century, from the force landings to the development of its infamous “democracy” to the alleged surgical strikes. The “success” of Washington’s “destabilization” of the continent with fear and destruction over the past 20 years has come at the cost of numerous civilian deaths, American soldiers murdered in vain, higher prices in stores, and humiliating losses.
The US began its military campaign in West Asia in 2001, sending hundreds of thousands of soldiers first into Afghanistan and then into Iraq. But as US troop casualties soared, the wars became extremely unpopular at home. Still, Washington had to pursue its bankrupt policies in order to extend its hegemony and justify its status as “world policeman.” To achieve this goal, the US has resorted to what the Pentagon defines as “surgical” air strikes using combat aircraft and, increasingly, armed drones. The US claims that it is carrying out surgical strikes with allegedly extreme precision. International human rights organizations have all criticized this precision, which has killed many civilians in dozens of countries around the world.
The Western media, meanwhile, plays the part of the Pentagon’s dirty propaganda machine, desperately pounding the drums of war for the American public. The footage of soldiers embarking attempted to elicit sympathy and urgency from the American public, many of whom were unaware that these military missions were unlawful. The mainstream Western media also played a sinister role, for example, by publishing only videos of US missile salvos but not showing any footage of where the missiles landed. Were there ever videos of the moments before the US missiles came crashing down on their screaming victims in terror? Or a few days later, as women and children are pulled from under the rubble?
The purpose of Washington’s military adventures and aggressions in West Asia, besides serving the military-industrial complex, was the so-called defense of its number one representative, Israel, in the region. Serving Tel Aviv’s interests began at a time when the area was growing stronger and the US was attempting to weaken West Asia’s power by introducing instability, bloodshed, and terror, as well as creating division. Among the countries embroiled in the so-called US “war on terror” in West Asia and the border regions, Afghanistan was the first to be served.
The most “sophisticated, advanced US Armed Forces” could not defeat men in flip-flops, wide turbans and pants armed with conventional Kalashnikovs and RPGs in Afghanistan. The so-called evacuation and the scenes that followed were an embarrassment to the current Biden administration. At least 70,000 US-trained Afghan security forces have died in 20 years of US occupation. Hundreds of thousands of dead civilians are on the conscience of the Biden administration and their cronies. Another million people have suffered, and some think tanks say that number should be doubled. And there is probably no market in Kabul that has not been blown to pieces by American bombs and missiles under the pretext that it is the center of terrorism.
In the end, the US-trained Afghan army collapsed, and together with it Kabul, which has been overrun by the Taliban, who have returned to power. At least 2,500 US troops were killed and another 21,000 were wounded. No goal achieved, no mission accomplished, just 20 years of terror, occupation and bullying for Afghan civilians.
The cost of war and occupation of the country to the American taxpayer is different. The Costs of War Project at Brown University estimates them at $2.3 trillion, which does not include the cost of erratic evacuation. Forbes estimates it was $300 million a day for two decades, after which the ousted Taliban returned to power and continue to rule Afghanistan. There is now also a humanitarian crisis, mainly because Washington has confiscated more than $7 billion in assets from beggarly Afghans, which now work to benefit the super-rich United States.
The next country to fall under the American “handout” was recalcitrant Iraq, seeking to pursue an independent, autonomous policy. The Bush administration used fake intelligence at the United Nations, claiming that Iraq had allegedly hidden weapons of mass destruction, biological and chemical weapons, and supported terrorism. And they continued the invasion with the infamous “shock and awe” bombing that lit up Baghdad’s night skyline in March 2003.
Anti-American resistance groups in Iraq grew as the months and years of brutal American occupation dragged on. No one wanted Saddam Hussein, but none of the locals wanted American tanks free to “walk” through their streets. Iraq was subjected to harsh US sanctions even before Saddam Hussein was overthrown, and this caused Iraqis extraordinary suffering and many hardships.
Many officials and experts later stated that the US war in Iraq was about oil. In 2007, Alan Greenspan wrote: “I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil.” Various organizations have concluded that up to 1.2 million Iraqis have died as a result of the invasion, which led to the rise of al-Qaeda (banned in Russia) in Iraq. And yet, this terrorist group had no presence there before the American invasion. Terrorist bombings became the norm, beginning during the American occupation and continuing to this day, killing and maiming thousands of innocent civilians. While US troops waited for flowers from the locals, the latter met the US military with armed resistance.
The highly unpopular war in Iraq had bitter consequences for the US military. 4,491 US soldiers died, and about 1,000 US contract soldiers and another 32,000 soldiers were wounded. Data shows that hundreds of thousands of soldiers suffered from mental health problems, including brain injuries, both in Iraq and in Afghanistan. The war also came at another huge cost to American taxpayers. Experts disagree on the exact price, because many hidden costs not represented by official estimates are factored in. In early 2008, before US troops were forced to withdraw, Harvard University estimated the invasion of Iraq lost the US $3 trillion.
The US was humiliated by the Iraqi resistance and expelled from the country in 2011. Americans returned to Iraq in 2014 under the pretext of fighting ISIS (banned in Russia), which critics say Washington was instrumental in creating and thriving. Today, it continues to violate the country’s sovereignty, despite a parliamentary bill calling for the expulsion of US military forces after the assassination of Qasem Soleimani, an Iranian major general, and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, Deputy Chairman of Popular Mobilization Committee in Baghdad.
This time, the US made extensive use of the air force, which carpet-bombed regions, killing dozens of thousands of Iraqi civilians. Video of the US drone bombing of Mosul in 2017 shows entire residential neighborhoods raised to the ground. But strangely, Iraq’s foreign exchange reserves from oil exports are held by the US Federal Reserve, giving the Americans significant control over Baghdad’s dollar reserves and now the economic and financial pressure. In fact, the country has yet to become fully sovereign until it gains control of its own funds and the US occupation ends.
The US military intervention in Syria in August 2014 is also being carried out under the pretext of fighting ISIS (banned in Russia), despite the absence of an invitation from Damascus. Washington supported, armed and financed groups it called “rebels” (in other words, terrorists) who wanted to overthrow the legitimate government of Bashar al-Assad.
Experts believe that horrific videos of the same “insurgent” terrorists will soon resurface and go viral on social media, such as US-trained militants cutting out the chests of civilians and eating their hearts and placing their severed heads on their bodies. This at a time when Western reporters could not get into areas where Washington was actively supporting the militants because they as journalists would also be beheaded.
Again, the US used its air force to carpet bomb entire cities like Raqqa. According to monitoring groups such as Airwars, dozens of thousands of civilians have been killed as a result. Other organizations have estimated the civilian death toll from US intervention in Iraq and Syria to be much higher, many of them elderly, women and children. The US has bombed Iraq and Syria at least 40,000 times under the pretext of fighting ISIS (banned in Russia). Where these dozens of thousands of bombs fell and who they killed is unknown, but sooner or later this awful data will come out and cover the “brave” American soldiers with shame and contempt by normal people around the world.
The Syrian people have yet to rebuild their infrastructure, and other vital facilities, ruthlessly destroyed by the servants of the Pentagon. The main reason for this is the continued illegal occupation by the United States of Syria’s oil-rich eastern border with Iraq, where an estimated 1,000 to 2,000 troops are stationed in heavily fortified bases. The presence of US troops on both parts of the Syrian-Iraqi border has a very grim element. Critics say their deployment is aimed at undermining progress in relations between the two countries while creating regional instability.
Damascus estimates that the US military has plundered the country’s oil reserves to the tune of more than $12 billion to pay for its own illegal presence in the country. These are vital funds that can help greatly in resolving the humanitarian crisis in Syria, helping Syrians in their needy situation. But this is the “democratic” policy of Washington – to rob poor nations in order to prosper itself. As they say, war to some, boon to others. Speaking of which, the war in Syria also led to the refugee crisis in the West, which claimed to support the Syrian people by banning them from entering its territory as refugees.