What Will Come About In Post-War Iraq?.
Those who have been watching the war on television are familiar with the video footage after the US military took control of Safwan, the southern Iraqi border town, when a man was captured on film hitting a large, partially destroyed wall portrait of Saddam Hussein with his shoe. It was the first glimpses the world has viewed of joyous Iraqis dancing in the street before their American liberators. Assurances of American and British war advocates who maintained that this military action is indeed liberation and not conquest, that Iraqis would welcome such intervention and that the invasion and occupation would place Iraq on the road to democracy. If the terrorizing of American troops does not stop happening soon, war planners can expect to have a tougher time securing Iraq and creating the environment necessary for reconstruction and democratization. .
Consider the celebratory heel banging in Safwan. A few days after the world heard about the shoe being smacked against Hussein's forehead, ABC News reporter John Donvan and his crew crossed the border from Kuwait into Iraq and visited the town. They witnessed no rejoicing. Townspeople surrounded the journalists and passionately voiced their opinions of the US invasion. From Donvan's interview that day the world learned that just because the townsfolk do not like Saddam, it doesn't mean they like the Americans trying to take him out. They were angry at America, and said US forces had shot at people in the town. They were also angry because they needed food, water and medicine and the aid promised by President Bush had not appeared. They asked us why the United States was taking over Iraq, and whether the Americans would stay in Iraq forever. They saw the US-led invasion as a takeover, not liberation. Resentment and suspicion, not gratitude and embrace were what Iraqis felt when American troops invaded Iraq.