Iraq is a country on the continent of Asia and in the Middle East. Previously part of the Ottoman Empire, it became a separate entity under British supervision following World War I and gained formal sovereignty in 1932 under a Hashemite monarchy. A nationalist republican movement overthrew the monarchy in 1958 and was in turn overthrown in 2003 by the United States, which oversaw the creation of the present federal republic.
- We came to power on a CIA train.
- Ba'ath Party official Ali Saleh Sa'adi, quoted in Saddam Hussein: The Politics of Revenge (2000) by Said K. Aburish
- Iraq continues to flaunt its hostility toward America and to support terror. The Iraqi regime has plotted to develop anthrax, and nerve gas, and nuclear weapons for over a decade. This is a regime that has already used poison gas to murder thousands of its own citizens -- leaving the bodies of mothers huddled over their dead children. This is a regime that agreed to international inspections -- then kicked out the inspectors. This is a regime that has something to hide from the civilized world. States like these, and their terrorist allies, constitute an axis of evil, arming to threaten the peace of the world. By seeking weapons of mass destruction, these regimes pose a grave and growing danger. They could provide these arms to terrorists, giving them the means to match their hatred. They could attack our allies or attempt to blackmail the United States. In any of these cases, the price of indifference would be catastrophic.
- Iraq is a great nation now, as it has been at times throughout history. Nations generally "go to the top" only once. Iraq, however, has been there many times, before and after Islam. Iraq is the only nation like this in the world. This "gift" was given to the Iraqi people by God. When Iraqi people fall, they rise again.
- Saddam Hussein in an interview with FBI Senior Special Agent George L. Piro (7 February 2004); National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 279
- I talked about my desire to promote institutional change in parts of the world, like Iraq where there's a free press and free religion, and I told him that a lot of people in our country would hope that Russia would do the same.
- George Bush on his talks with Vladimir Putin (15 July 2006)
- We certainly would not want to have the same kind of democracy that they have in Iraq, quite honestly.
- Response by Vladimir Putin (15 July 2006)
- We have not witnessed the reduction in violence one would have hoped for in a perfect world.
- If it is Syria’s shelter for the Iraqi resistance to the east that has made it the target for an American siege, it is with good reason. For in Iraq itself, the war has gone from bad to worse for Washington. Confronted with a dauntless insurgency, the Occupation is still—after three years and an outlay of over $200 billion—unable to assure regular supplies of water and electricity to the people it has subjugated. Factories remain idle. Hospitals and schools barely function. Oil revenues have been looted wholesale by America’s local minions, not to speak of a horde of US contractors on the take. Wretched as living conditions were for the majority of the population under un sanctions, under the Americans they have deteriorated yet further, as sectarian killings multiply and minimal security disappears.
- The Israeli attacks and airstrikes are completely destroying Lebanon's infrastructure. I condemn these aggressions and call on the Arab League foreign ministers' meeting in Cairo to take quick action to stop these aggressions. We call on the world to take quick stands to stop the Israeli aggression.
- And I also emphasized the importance of an immediate cease-fire and called on the international community to support the Lebanese government and support the Lebanese people to overcome the damage and destruction that happened.
- Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, White House news conference (25 July 2006)
- I told him I support a sustainable cease-fire that will bring about an end to violence and I talked about the importance of strengthening the Lebanese government and supporting the Lebanese people.
- George Bush, reply to Maliki (25 July 2006)
- Do not imagine that this problem is solely an Iraqi problem because the terrorist front represents a threat to all free countries and free people of the world....Thousands of lives were tragically lost on Sept. 11 when these impostors of Islam reared their ugly head. Thousands more continue to die in Iraq today at the hands of the same terrorists who show complete disregard for human life.
- Oh, I don't know. You know, I thought about that last night, and just musing over the words, the phrase, and what constitutes it. If you think of our Civil War, this is really very different. If you think of civil wars in other countries, this is really quite different. There is -- there is a good deal of violence in Baghdad and two or three other provinces, and yet in 14 other provinces there's very little violence or numbers of incidents. So it's a -- it's a highly concentrated thing. It clearly is being stimulated by people who would like to have what could be characterized as a civil war and win it, but I'm not going to be the one to decide if, when or at all.
- Donald Rumsfeld in response to the question "Is the country closer to civll war?", Pentagon press conference (25 July 2006)]
- The problem, again, was that there were too many reasons for the war. What conferred a semblance of consistency on this multitude of reasons was, of course, ideology.
- What then, was the real reason for going to war? Strangely, there were, in effect, three: (1) a sincere ideological belief that the USA was bringing democracy and prosperity to another nation; (2) the urge brutally to assert and demonstrate unconditional US hegemony; (3) control of Iraq's oil reserves. Each of the three levels has a relative autonomy of its own, and should not be dismissed as a mere deceptive semblance.
- In autumn 2003, when, after hundreds of investigators had searched high and low for WMDs, yet not a single one had been located, the public were posing the elementary question: 'If there are no WMDs, Why did we attack Iraq? Did you lie to us?'
- The establishment of a free Iraq at the heart of the Middle East will be a watershed event in the global democratic revolution.
- We have traded a dictator for a chaos that has left America less secure.
- The motivation for war is simple. The U.S. government started the war with Iraq in order to make it easy for U.S. corporations to do business in other countries. They intend to use cheap labor in those countries, which will make Americans rich.
- For anyone who follows the news, the past few weeks has seen an increase in terrorist attacks against peace and civilization. From the bombing of the United Nations hotel in Baghdad to the continuing assaults against our troops in Iraq, we are coming to fully appreciate the sacrifice our men and women in uniform make on a daily basis.
- Governor Mitt Romney
- I wouldn't presume to present a plan different from that of the President. But I believe he was right to take on the war on terror on an aggressive front rather than a defensive front. We toppled the government ... walking away would mean a humanitarian disaster. We're there and we have a responsibility to finish the job.
- Frankly, Dick, you don't have the warplan, and that makes me very glad.
- Donald Rumsfeld in response to the question of why the US is not following the warplan at the start of the Iraq War. Taken during second press conference aired within the first hours of the US officially entering Iraqi territory.
- As we act, let us not become the evil we deplore.
- Congresswoman Barbara Lee in a speech to the House of Representatives 14 September 2001.
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- "Third of Iraqis 'need urgent aid'". BBC News. 29 July 2007. Retrieved on 2007-07-29.
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