20 Years On, US Still Waging Perpetual War Worldwide

Twenty years ago, March 19, 2003, the US launched likely the most vicious criminal war in its long history of senseless warfare and regime change. America attacked Iraq, not just with no evidence supporting invasion, but manufactured lies. Hundreds of thousands were killed based on those lies.

The government propaganda was flag waving and relentless. This war was enabled by the 911 attacks which fueled US lust to remake the entire Middle East in its image. Corporate media rolled over to support a war they knew was unjustified. MSNBC fired popular host Phil Donahue because he dared tell the truth about US criminality. No antiwar advocate was given a public voice.

It came just 17 months after the initial criminal war to begin Middle East dominance in Afghanistan. The real prize of US conquest was Iran. A famous propaganda line was that the road to Iran runs from Afghanistan through Iraq and Syria. We waged warfare against all four in attacks large and small. By some miracle of restraint we have not yet launched all out war against Iran.

We still have 2,500 troops defiling Iraq to keep an eye on Iran. We still have 900 troops in Syria guarding the oil we’ve stolen from Syria and preventing its government from controlling one third of its own land. We won’t let Syria rebuild the nation we helped shatter. We were driven out Afghanistan by the Taliban who had way more popular support than the US after we pummeled Afghanistan for 20 years.

We’re still using life degrading sanctions to achieve regime change in the Middle East, Latin America and the Far East. This is warfare by a less explosive means.

Twenty years to the day we began bombing Iraq into ruin, we’re pouring tens of billions in weapons into Ukraine, ensuring its destruction in a war we could have prevented. Once started we could have ended it early on. Tragically, in 13 months the US has not made a single effort to negotiate the war’s end, the way virtually every war in history ends.

In those two decades American leaders have learned nothing. They risk bankrupting America to fuel their now proxy war against Russia to keep them out of the European political economy. With Ukraine nearing collapse, the risk of nuclear war grows. They view the loss in Afghanistan is one they cannot repeat against Russia, even though ending the war jeopardizes US security interests not a whit. Its negotiated end will save Ukraine in the process

March 19, 2003 should join December 7, 1941 as a US Day of Infamy. Except with March 19, 2003, America was the attacker.

Walt Zlotow became involved in antiwar activities upon entering University of Chicago in 1963. He is current president of the West Suburban Peace Coalition based in the Chicago western suburbs. He blogs daily on antiwar and other issues at www.heartlandprogressive.blogspot.com.

15 thoughts on “20 Years On, US Still Waging Perpetual War Worldwide”

    1. But we had to lie to overcome isolation and engage in a new world order of interconnectivity.
      (I better share I’m being sacastic ;-)

  1. January 11, 2022 The U.S. Makes a Mockery of Treaties and International Law

    U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and other members of the Biden Cabinet are fond of proclaiming the “rules-based international order” (RBIO) or “rules-based order” every chance they get: in press conferences, on interviews, in articles, at international fora, for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and cocktails. Along with the terms “human rights” and “democracy,” the RBIO is routinely used to claim a moral high ground against countries that they accuse of not following this RBIO, and wielded as a cudgel to attack, criticize, accuse, and delegitimate countries in their crosshairs as rogue outliers to an international order.



    1. “Rules based” economic blocks always need to have someone to enforce and protect. Historically and today it falls to military might to do that.

      1. The Romans thought they could back in time, and history shows what happened to them.

  2. Coming upon the 20 year anniversary, you would expect a lot of reflection upon the million lives we snuffed out for no reason and the war crimes committed. But no, all we get are neocon attempts at revising the narrative of the war – trying to somehow frame it into a just conflict when it was and always has been an absolute disaster predicated on lies. Absolutely disgusting.

  3. This is good regarding direct U.S. war, but it totally fails to discuss or even mention U.S. coups and proxy wars. By proxy, the U.S. killed a million people each in Indonesia, Mozambique, and Angola. Before that, the U.S. killed three million people in Vietnam by direct war. And those are just the biggest U.S. killing sprees in service of the empire, all well before the U.S. invaded Afghanistan. The U.S., whether directly or by proxy, has waged perpetual war since its inception, starting with the war against the Natives, the land, and all the nonhuman native life here.

  4. Mar 13, 2023 After 20 Years, Will US News Media Finally Admit its Craven Complicity in Iraq War?

    This clip is adapted from the critically acclaimed documentary “War Made Easy,” produced in 2007 by the Media Education Foundation at the height of the Iraq war. “War Made Easy” takes a blistering look at how U.S. media outlets from Fox News to MSNBC enthusiastically disseminated Bush administration propaganda and helped sell a war that would kill thousands of American troops and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, most of them innocent civilians.


    1. George Warmonger Bush & Tony Blair Witch Project said Iraq had plans to threaten world peace with WMD’s & that it was involved in the 9/11 attacks in the US. Neither one of those statements is true.
      GW Bush said Hussein tried to kill his father. He did not. If he did, it would be for declaring war on Iraq and bombing it after the war ended and having the UN impose sanctions which led to the starvation of its peoples. Iraq had no role in 9/11. If it did, it would be for the same reasons.
      GHW Bush said he cried for the US Troops that died in the Gulf War but bragged about killing Iraqis. Many people say he was much better than W for not overthrowing Hussein. Another awful thing GHW did was bomb Panama in his search for Noriega.

      1. Thanks friend, and here is another inconvenient truth.

        September 10, 2021 The Bin Ladens and the Bushes: On 9/11 George Herbert W. Bush Meets Osama’s Brother Shafiq bin Laden

        Lest we forget, one day before the 9/11 attacks [as well as on the morning of 9/11, the dad of the sitting President of the United States of America, George Herbert Walker Bush was meeting none other than Shafiq bin Laden, the brother of the alleged terror mastermind Osama bin Laden.


        Mar 15, 2015 George Bush Sr. Had Breakfast with Bin Laden’s Brother on 9/11

        George W. Bush’s father was meeting with Osama Bin Laden’s brother, Shafig Bin Laden, in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Washington, on the morning of 9/11.


        1. I’m a firm believer in “never forget”. 9/11 changed us forever. Our complicity in 9/11 will always be a red stain on our country and indeed on our political system overall. Democracy died on 9/11, along with innocent people.

          Today, we live in a hollowed out shell of what is left of our democracy and we will never be able to regain our previous stature until the full truth is exposed and any surviving perpetrators are held to account………………..

      2. Bush II was a figurehead. None of this would have happened if not for Darth Vader being in the White House as vice president.

Comments are closed.