One can only view with horror the unfolding events in Iraq. Images recently posted on the net of the murder of security personnel by the most extreme jihadists were blood-curdling, to say the least. And ISIS marches on, gathering momentum for its campaign of terror, and new adherents at an alarming rate. It seems almost unstoppable in its drive for an Islamic state in Iraq and Syria, which countries are being torn apart by sectarian strife.
A major contributing factor to the current crisis in Iraq is the political bias of the country’s Prime Minister, Al Malaki. Peter Mansoor, former executive officer to general David Petraeus, said that he “governed Iraq with an iron fist and alienated large segments of the Iraqi population” Under Al Malaki’s regime, Sunni citizens and key Sunni politicians were interned without trial. It is not altogether surprising then, that a marginalised and persecuted people have sought help and support from rebels.
The Iraqi Prime Minister is not the only one culpable for the ever-increasing political mess in his country. The West has been a major contributor too. Sir Christopher Meyer, a former British ambassador to the US, has said that the second Gulf War was “perhaps the most significant reason for the current sectarian violence.”
At the time, Tony Blair claimed that Saddam Hussein had to be put down for, among other reasons, his possession of weapons of mass destruction (these were never found). Now the former Prime Minister tells us that the war was also for the purpose of regime change.
In a very real sense things have changed – for the worse! The toppling of Saddam was comparatively easy. But western leaders never gave due consideration to the aftermath of military intervention and the break-up of Iraq. They went to war on a pretence, sought to mould a foreign government according to their own liking and then withdrew, leaving behind a country more divided than ever.
Still the likes of Tony Blair play the part of Pontius Pilate, washing their hands of the whole debacle! Mr Blair said recently concerning the Iraq crisis – “We have to liberate ourselves from the notion that we have caused this. We haven’t.”Actually, we have, by not making an overwhelming case for being involved in Iraq in the first place and by ignoring warnings of serious destabilisation. Fools rushed in where angels fear to tread. Others have been left to pick up the pieces.
To say none of this is our fault shows that Mr Blair is on the run from reality and responsibility. Had he only consulted the good book he would not look so weak and foolish. He ought to have known that the time for war is only discerned by good advice and a multitude of counsellors (Proverbs 20:18, 24:6).