La Opinión: Iraq War Was Built on 'Arrogance' and 'Lies'

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LOS ANGELES -- The Iraq war will be remembered as "an incomprehensible war whose repercussions will continue for a long time," according an editorial in La Opinión looking back at the eight and a half years of U.S. military intervention in Iraq that ended this week.

The U.S. invasion of Iraq, editors write, was "a legacy of the George W. Bush administration built on endless arrogance that led to denials of reality, deliberate lies and deep judgment errors." The war itself has done more harm than good, editors write, leading to losses in terms of human lives, money and geopolitical uncertainty.

More than 4,000 American soldiers died, more than 30,000 American soldiers sustained life-altering injuries and more than 100,000 Iraqi civilians died during the war in Iraq. This was a high price for the Iraqi people, who never asked Washington to rescue them militarily from Saddam Hussein’s dictatorship, editors write.

The United States, meanwhile, has absorbed hundreds of billions of dollars of debt for the cost of the war and is accountable for the care of thousands of soldiers suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.

The troops are withdrawing from Iraq, leaving Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s government in charge of security and facing the underlying threat of the return of the religious conflict between Shiites and Sunnis. In addition, editors write, the geopolitical picture shows a strong Iranian influence.

"There is little to celebrate about this date, other than breathing a sigh of relief because at least this chapter is finally over," the editorial concludes. But even though the war is over, editors write, "The conflict’s aftereffects will be felt in Iraq and the U.S. for years to come."