Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Invaded by Bush, Abandoned by Obama: What's Next for Iraq?

By Namo Abdulla - for Rudaw

By 2003, an iron-fisted dictator had ruled Iraq for nearly three decades. At that time, a Republican man named George W. Bush decided the only way to make the country better was to invade it.

But nearly a decade later, a Democrat named Barack Obama thought the best thing for the United States was to withdraw its troops from Iraq as quickly as possible.

That sounds like a stark difference between Democrats and Republicans when it comes to foreign policy. 

But is that really the case? 

This episode of Inside America is going to look at U.S. foreign policy regarding a post-Saddam Hussein Iraq. It questions the efficacy and feasibility of major strategies such as the notorious de-Bathification policy, the surge and other plans and diplomatic resolutions proposed, ignored or implemented. 

It finally asks whether President Obama’s withdrawal was “responsible” as he had pledged in his 2008 election campaigns.

Throughout a 10-year occupation, what went wrong and what else can the United States do to right those mistakes? 

The interviewees include:

Ambassador David Mack, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs. At the final years of the Cold War, he served as the US Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates. Mack's US diplomatic assignments included Iraq, Jordan, Jerusalem, Lebanon, Libya, Tunisia, and Saudi Arabia. 

James J. Zogby, the author of Arab Voices, and the founder and president of the Arab American Institute (AAI), a Washington, D.C.-based research organization on Arab Americans. Dr. Zogby is a visiting Professor of Social Research at New York University in Abu Dhabi.  He has testified before U.S. House and Senate committees. He has also been a guest speaker at the U.S. Department of State and the United Nations. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.  He has led US delegations for peace talks between Israel and Palestine.

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