None of the seven “achievements,” (consequences is probably a better word) are anything anyone would consider “good.” From Gary Leupp at strategic-culture.org:
Here is a list of the noteworthy, ongoing results of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq beginning in March 2003. (Recall that invasion was denounced by the UN as illegal, based entirely on lies, and—given the U.S.’s hegemonic position in the world, allowing it to act with impunity—the crime’s architects have never punished.)
1) The principal achievement of the war and occupation was the dramatic expansion of the al-Qaeda network that had attacked the U.S. on January 11, 2001. An al-Qaeda franchise was established in Iraq for the first time, playing a key role in the Sunni “insurrection” against the occupiers and their Shiite allies, then expanding across the border into Syria where it split into the al-Nusra affiliate and its even more savage rival, ISIL. Iraq also served and serves as a training ground for jihadis now operating from Iraq to Libya and beyond.
2) The invasion and its consequences encouraged the cause of Kurdistan, an imagined state straddling Iran, Iraq, Syria and Turkey. The Kurds are the largest stateless people in the world, victims of British and French colonialists who divided the region between them after World War I. After the Gulf War of 1991, the U.S. established a “no-fly” zone over northern Iraq to discourage Baghdad from deploying troops in the region. Iraqi Kurdistan had already obtained a degree of autonomy before the invasion but the status became official under the occupation and a referendum for independence is likely to pass soon. This would infuriate Iraq and perhaps provoke Turkey’s intervention. As it is, the autonomous region is locked in struggle with Baghdad over territorial claims and control over oil fields.
3) The invasion destroyed the Iraqi state, causing it to fracture into three: Kurdistan, the Sunni zone in the west, and the Shiite-majority areas around Baghdad. The Baathist regime of Saddam Hussein had been extremely repressive and brutal. But it had maintained order; discouraged religion in politics; protected the Christian and other religious minorities; promoted women’s rights; imposed no dress code; enforced a criminal code modeled after the Napoleonic (not the Sharia); licensed rock n’ roll radio stations, allowed the brewing of beer and its sale etc. The Shiite-led regime boosted into power by the occupation has reversed much of this. (A bill to ban the production and sale of beer was just passed by Parliament last week.) But the regime’s power does not extend into much of Anbar Province, ISIL still governs Mosul, and again, Kurdistan has become autonomous.
4) Because Shiites are the majority in Iraq (60%), and dominate Iran next door; and because the leaders of Shiite parties have studied in Iran or lived their in exile and are sympathetic to Iran’s mullah-led regime; and because the U.S. was forced by peaceful mass protests to allow elections and the emergence of Shiites as the leaders of the country, Iran’s power and influence in the region has expanded dramatically. (Apparently no one in the State Department thought about that.) Since Iran has not attacked another country in centuries — but was savagely attacked by Saddam Hussein in 1981, sparking a long war killing over half a million people — and since Iran’s friendliness to its neighbor, one of the few Arab countries in which its co-coreligionists hold power, is entirely natural, one can ask why anyone might be alarmed by this. But it does alarm some, the leaders of Saudi Arabia, that crucial U.S. Arab ally governed by Wahhabi Sunnis, most of all.
To continue reading: Seven World-Historical Achievements of the Iraq Invasion of 2003