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It's a valid point. Saddam was paying $25,000 to the families of the suicide bombers, but not much else. You could call it state-sponsered terrorism only if you include what he did to his own people. What evidence do you have to support your argument that Iraq was involved in state sponsored terrorism?

The $25K/head is sufficient justification by itself. However, I believe you misunderstood me. I have made this point many times on this board since 9/11/01 but I have not recapped it for a long time.

Basically, I believe that our stated reason for attacking Iraq (WMD) was a red herring from the beginning, and I did use that expression in that context on this board prior to the attack. However I think the evidence that Bush believed it was actually true is overwhelming.

Nonetheless, it wasn't the real reason we attacked. The Administration put it up because it was the argument they thought they could sell to the American people. The real reason was strictly military, strictly strategic. By taking Iraq, we at one time destroy a military that was large enough and powerful enough to seriously interfere with our activities in the region, and we would occupy a chunk of real estate that permitted us to move easily against any of the major the major "bad boys" in the region: Iran, Syria, and even Saudi Arabia. But mostly Iran.

By taking Iraq, we eliminate a threat and are ideally positioned to continue operations, notably against Iran.

However, as we have seen, this Administration blew the post-invasion planning. Actually, I don't think there was ANY post-invasion planning, beyond "the Iraqis will love us for freeing them...". So we see what happened.

This lack of planning made it impossible to finish off Syria, which should have been done by the end of 2003, and gave fuel to domestic agitators who have now become loud enough that we can't readily proceed against Iran, which we MUST do. Not an attack, necessarily, but certainly military and economic pressure, at a level far beyond what we are currently employing.

So now we are bogged down with the job somewhat less than half done. There have been no further attacks in the US, but we also do not seem to have had adequate success in smashing the mechanisms for state-sponsored terrorism in that region (read: Iran).

My evaluation at this point: we had to take Iraq. Our military did an excellent job of taking Iraq. But we have all been betrayed by very poor planning, beyond the achievement of military objectives. We see the results.
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