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Possibly a contender for CategoryConspiracy but it seemed like something people had been missing:

Having briefly skimmed through the ongoing debate, it seemed to me people had missed one vital issue: If the reason for going to war was not weapons of mass destruction, then what were why?

Possible contenders include:

Edith - I suspect a bit of everything, including the possibility of WMD myself (if not a present threat then a future threat) but I suspect the main reasoning was thus: The US/UK/west finds the middle east to be a tricky area at the best of times, it generates terrorism and manipulates the industrialised love of Oil to support politics with which the US/UK/West? finds distasteful (given a broad definition of that word, with much less emphasis on any moral or religious aspects). Thus the US/UK/west would like to make the middle east nicer to its interests. At the moment the US/UK/west's best friend in the area is Saudi Arabia, which has developed a knack of pissing off the US/UK/west in recent years by not doing exactly what they were told. At the same time, a constant thorn in the side of the US/UK/west has been a man called Saddam Hussain and his country of Iraq, which causes political difficulties if nothing else (oh yes, plus the constant danger he might do something stupid if we don't keep an eye on him and continuously bomb his country to the dust). The solution: Remove Saddam Hussain and reform Iraq to be an example to what the US/UK/west would like the rest of the middle east to actually be. That way, the benefits of the way of life the US/UK/west believes in will be shown to all in the middle east. The other countries will either convert to that way of life peacefully or their governments will be violently overthrown by the people who will all want this way of life. Thus the middle east will be a peaceful happy place. Plus the US/UK/west won't be quite so dependent on their current allies who they don't really like and they can get permanent military bases in the region in more than one country. Basically they want a new puppet for more rampant imperialism, but that doesn't really sit well with the voters now does it?

(complaints about spelling and grammar should be directed to Edith or simply corrected.)

That way, the benefits of the way of life the US/UK/west believes in will be shown to all in the middle east.

This bit seems a bit unlikely to me. Surely a bit of foresight would have predicted (and, in fact, did: see comments elsewhere in this namespace describing the prolonged occupation, guerilla warfare and increased instability we are now seeing, written before/during the invasion) the situation we are currently observing? I see it more of a "this is what's going to happen to you if you don't get your act together" sort of thing aimed at other nations in the Middle East, and a test by the US of whether the UN was actually capable of putting up any real opposition to unsanctioned actions by a member. But this is all pure conjecture, when it comes down to it. - MoonShadow

Said 'this will happen' conjecture is one time when I really really wish I had been wrong.  I can't shake the feeling that "People are dying because I told you so".  It makes the gloating so much harder.  --Vitenka

A few weeks into Afghanistan I saw a poll on MSN (or something of the sort, might have been NTL) that asked "Should Iraq be the next target in the War On Terror?".  Presumably they just followed the poll results --Mjb67

Well, on the one hand, this would be DirectDemocracy? and a good thing.  On the other, it's, um, well a scary thought.  I think, actually, that the US has anti-iraq talks being given much earlier during the attacks on Afghanistan than we got over here, so the poll isn't quite as odd as it sounds.  Still, what with the demand for a premature withdrawal, I begin to see people's arguments against DirectDemocracy?.  People scare quickly and mob easily.  Damn boids.  --Vitenka

Also, I find it exceptionally depressing that anti-war American talk is mostly focussing on the cost.  Hello?  People are dying, and you are worrying about money?  --Vitenka

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