Today is the third anniversary of USA President George W Bush declaring “major combat operations in Iraq have ended”, while standing in front of a huge banner reading “Mission Accomplished”.
Click here to read some of the extraordinary media commentary in the USA at the time of the President’s declaration – most of which focused on how cool it was that he got out of a fighter jet in military uniform after landing on an air craft carrier.
Click here to access the Iraq Body Count website which details the reported civilian deaths in Iraq since the war started – currently at a minimum of nearly 35 000.
Click here to access details of the casualties from the Coalition armed forces in Iraq – currently at nearly 2400 USA personnel, 104 UK and 110 from other countries (including 2 Australians). The site also lists the number of wounded in action at around 17 500 and says there have been about 3700 deaths from Iraqi security forces.
The Australian Strategic Policy Institute estimates the direct cost to Australian taxpayers is around $1.2 billion.
In March 2003, a resolution endorsing Australia’s involvement in starting the war failed to pass the Australian Senate.
On March 29, 2003, the Sydney Morning Herald published the following quotes from Prime Minster Howard:
“an unprecedented level of concern to avoid civilian casualties”, would necessarily lengthen the war. But he was eager to head off suggestions that coalition forces would become bogged down, saying a war timetable of several months “sounds stretched to me”.
(Media Matters and SMH links found through Road to Surfdom)