Argument: Foreign troops are doing more harm than good in Iraq

Issue Report: Withdrawing from Iraq


  • Gilbert Achcar, a political science teacher at the University of Paris, said in a June, 2006 interview for International Viewpoint – “The longer the U.S. troops stay in Iraq, the worse the situation becomes. The situation is continuously deteriorating: In the last weeks we have seen again new stages in this deterioration, which are really very worrying. For people to say ‘Well, the U.S. troops should stay to prevent a civil war’ is completely absurd.”
[…]GA: One could imagine and draw all kinds of apocalyptic scenarios, but there is apocalypse now, we are in the midst of it. And of course, it could get worse…but it is getting worse. It is getting worse day after day. And it has been proved very very obviously, very factually, that the longer the U.S. troops stay in that country the worse it is getting.
[…]No one can dispute that since day one of the invasion up until now the situation has steadily worsened-look at all the figures, it’s absolutely terrible. The idea that the United States should stay there even longer to prevent it from deteriorating is completely absurd. It’s clear, it has been tried and tried and over-tried, and the conclusion is clear, the U.S. troops should get out of that country if that country is ever to recover.[1]
  • Johann Hari: Need Iraq suffer more if we pull out?”. The Independent. 27 August 2007 – “The US troops cannot be an agent of anything positive in Iraq, after using chemical weapons in civilian cities, after using torture routinely, after overseeing the death of 650,000 Iraqis. Today, 78 percent of Iraqis say the US presence ‘is doing more harm than good’ and should leave. This is hardly surprising: the former US soldier in Iraq Jeff Englehart said recently: ‘The general attitude was, a dead Iraqi is just another dead Iraqi.’ The current US strategy – of building up a ‘national’ army and police force that consists essentially of violent Shia militias – may actually be unwittingly preparing the forces for a genocide.”
  • Army, General Sir Richard Dannatt, said that the British troop presence was “exacerbating” the security situation.[2]
  • A British officer in Iraq said, “We are a major part of the problem[…]Without us the murder rate would be lower than in Washington DC.”[3]