As the last few US troops withdraw from Iraq, putting a cap on the latest of innumerable “ends” to the Iraq War, Rep. Duncan Hunter (R – CA) angrily condemned Obama for not being more open in declaring how great a military victory the conquest of Iraq actually was.
Obama did declare the war a “success” however, saying that the nine years of occupation was “an extraordinary achievement” and “one of the most extraordinary chapters in the history of the American military.”
The Iraq he “leaves behind” (putting aside the State Department’s private army and the massive embassy) is starkly different from the Iraq that America found in 2003. The population has dropped considerably, both from refugees fleeing the conquering forces and the enormous death toll, while the cities are much more segregated along religious lines than ever before.
Its an Iraq that’s celebrating, however, if only because the most obvious signs of the US occupation, the ground troops, are leaving. Iraqis took to the streets today celebrating the way much of the world seems to celebrate these days, burning the American flag and celebrating the lack of US troops with guns trained on them.
The demonstrators said today was the “first annual” celebration of its type, aimed at commemorating those Iraqis who resisted the occupation. Whether there will be a second annual celebration without any US troops remains to be seen.
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