The mission was not accomplished. In fact, it was ultimately a failure. From Fyodor Lukyanov at azerbaycan24.com:
FILE PHOTO: US Marines of Task Force Tarawa prepare their vehicles at Camp Shoup, near the Iraqi border, in Kuwait. © Joe Raedle / Getty Images
George W. Bush’s illegal invasion came at a time when the US was the only real global power, and high on its own self-confidence By Fyodor Lukyanov, the editor-in-chief of Russia in Global Affairs, chairman of the Presidium of the Council on Foreign and Defense Policy, and research director of the Valdai International Discussion Club.FILE PHOTO: US Marines of Task Force Tarawa prepare their vehicles at Camp Shoup, near the Iraqi border, in Kuwait. © Joe Raedle / Getty Images
Twenty years ago, in May 2003, then-US President George W. Bush landed on the deck of the Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf and declared “mission accomplished.” The Texan announced the liberation of Iraq and the end of active combat, in effect a military victory.
This was technically true. Baghdad was under American control, and although Iraqi President Saddam Hussein had escaped, he would be captured six months later. In fact, the invasion by Washington and its coalition had destroyed Iraqi statehood, led to a bloody civil war, the disintegration of the country, a dramatic shift in the balance of power in the region (not in the Americans’ favor, by the way), and was the root cause of the series of upheavals that engulfed the Middle East in the 2000s and 2010s.
Much has already been said about the war in Iraq, and we will not repeat it. We will simply note that only the most stubborn neo-conservatives now defend it, justifying the expediency of the action under what is now well known to have been a false pretext. Even their like-minded but less radical supporters admit that the intervention was unsuccessful and unnecessary. Nevertheless, most of the initiators of the campaign – former President Bush himself, his inner circle of Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, and Richard Perle – are comfortably retired, and Donald Rumsfeld left this world, without facing any repercussions, two years ago.