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- Nov 2018
I had begun to think of social movements’ abilities in terms of “capacities”—like the muscles one develops while exercising but could be used for other purposes like carrying groceries or walking long distances—and their repertoire of pro-test, like marches, rallies, and occupations as “signals” of those capacities.
I find it interesting that she's using words from information theory like "capacities" and "signals" here. It reminds me of the thesis of Caesar Hidalgo's Why Information Grows and his ideas about links. While within the social milieu, links may be easier to break with new modes of communication, what most protesters won't grasp or have the time and patience for is the recreation of new links to create new institutions for rule. As seen in many war torn countries, this is the most difficult part. Similarly campaigning is easy, governing is much harder.
As an example: The US government's breaking of the links of military and police forces in post-war Iraq made their recovery process far more difficult because all those links within the social hierarchy and political landscape proved harder to reconstruct.
- Nov 2017
primary motive of the war - mobilising Iraqi oil production to sustain global oil flows and moderate global oil prices - has, so far, been fairly successful according to the International Energy Agency.
The reason that oil reached $117 a barrel last week was less to do with security of supply… than World shortage."
raq remains a destabilising influence to... the flow of oil to international markets from the Middle East. Saddam Hussein has also demonstrated a willingness to threaten to use the oil weapon and to use his own export programme to manipulate oil markets. This would display his personal power, enhance his image as a pan-Arab leader... and pressure others for a lifting of economic sanctions against his regime
Oil was not the only goal of the Iraq War, but it was certainly the central one, as top U.S. military and political figures have attested to in the years following the invasion
Saddam Hussein deserved to remain in power. But the security vacuum after his fall and the presence of foreign occupiers led to Iraq becoming a breeding ground for jihad and religious extremism.
The Iraqi politicians who found traction in U.S.-occupied Iraq did little to build an inclusive, pluralist politics. Nor did they have much incentive. Traumatized by decades of authoritarianism and indulged by foreign partners, they sought to consolidate their own political fiefdoms to the detriment of the fragile Iraqi state.
Saddam Hussein was a nasty, murderous tyrant who brutalized much of his country and was guilty of war crimes
It is widely agreed upon that Iraqi civilian deaths peak in July. But estimates, which hover between 1,000 and 3,500 for that month, vary greatly
December 2005 elections bring the Shiite United Iraqi Alliance into power, and in April 2006, the party names Nouri al-Maliki prime minister. Maliki is a longtime Iraqi politician with close ties to Iran.
Thirty-eight U.S. troops die, along with six Iraqi soldiers. The Pentagon estimates 1,200 insurgents are killed, and the Red Cross says eight hundred Iraqi civilians die with them.
Acting on tips from the dictator's bodyguard and family members, U.S. troops find Saddam Hussein hiding out in a one-man hole near his boyhood home of Tikrit.
L. Paul Bremer III, head of the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq, signs an order disbanding the Iraqi army and intelligence services, sending hundreds of thousands of well-armed men into the streets
Lawlessness and some skirmishing in the country are written off as the desperate acts of "dead-enders" by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld
U.S., British, and other coalition forces quickly overwhelm the Iraqi Army, though elements loyal to Saddam Hussein who will form the core of a postwar insurgency fight on
Saddam’s Bomb: How close is Iraq to having a nuclear weapon?
the Iraqi government had a difficult time recruiting and training police officers and soldiers to assume domestic security duties. The death of al-Qaeda in Iraq’s leader, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, in June 2006 did nothing to reduce the violence.
Political violence continued to grow. Attacks directed at coalition forces, which had begun to rise in 2005, became even more violent and sophisticated. Yet it was attacks against Iraqi civilians, mostly in and around Baghdad, that consumed the attention of the international community as Shīʿite and Sunni militia and terror groups targeted members of the opposite group.
Responsible for countless killings and sabotage, the insurgents targeted coalition forces, new Iraqi security forces and recruitment centres, electrical installations, oil pipelines, and other civilian institutions
Major fighting ended by late April, but acts of common criminality continued, and, as the months passed, a pattern of concerted guerrilla warfare began to unfold. On December 13, 2003, Ṣaddām surrendered to U.S. troops when he was found hiding near Tikrīt, and other major figures from the regime were tracked down and arrested.
Bush’s prewar claims, the failure of U.S. intelligence services to correctly gauge Iraq’s weapon-making capacity, and the failure to find any weapons of mass destruction—the Bush administration’s primary rationale for going to war—became major political debating points.
The number of Iraqis who died during the conflict is uncertain. One estimate made in late 2006 put the total at more than 650,000 between the U.S.-led invasion and October 2006, but many other reported estimates put the figures for the same period at about 40,000 to 50,000.
Iraq’s major cities erupted in a wave of looting that was directed mostly at government offices and other public institutions, and there were severe outbreaks of violence—both common criminal violence and acts of reprisal against the former ruling clique.
The military clash originated in Saddam Hussein's decision, in the aftermath of the Iran-Iraq War, to seek territorial and economic gains at the expense of Kuwait. In 1989 and 1990, Hussein signaled a growing intention to use force to against the tiny emirate.
Hussein constructively—while ignoring his abysmal human rights and foreign policy records—on the calculation that firmer measures might actually provoke the very aggressive behavior that the United States hoped to prevent.
When tensions rose and Hussein moved 100,000 troops to the Kuwait border, Bush also bolstered the U.S. naval presence in the Gulf and warned Hussein against instigating military action.
- Jul 2016
"Their investigation will not change our situation, it will not restore our Iraq and the people who are gone," he said. "The war came and then the sectarian violence ... and Daesh," he added, referring to Islamic State fighters who seized most of the country's Sunni territories in 2014 and still control the northern city of Mosul.
Where is the source for this?