- The United States Invasion of Iraq in March-April 2003,
and the occupation of the country since then, has cost more than a thousand
American lives and many tens of billions of dollars, and has brought death
to many thousands of Iraqis.
- Why did President Bush decide to go to war? In whose
interests was it launched?
- In the months leading up to the attack, President Bush
and other high-ranking US officials repeatedly warned that the threat posed
to the US and world by the Baghdad regime was so grave and imminent that
the United States had to act quickly to bomb, invade and occupy Iraq.
- On September 28, 2002, for example, he said: "The
danger to our country is grave and it is growing. The Iraqi regime possesses
biological and chemical weapons, is rebuilding the facilities to make more
and, according to the British government, could launch a biological or
chemical attack in as little as 45 minutes after the order is given...
This regime is seeking a nuclear bomb, and with fissile material could
build one within a year."
- On March 6, 2003, President Bush declared: "Saddam
Hussein and his weapons are a direct threat to this country, to our people,
and to all free people... I believe Saddam Hussein is a threat to the American
people. I believe he's a threat to the neighborhood in which he lives.
And I've got good evidence to believe that. He has weapons of mass destruction...
The American people know that Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction."
- These claims were untrue. As the world now knows, Iraq
had no dangerous "weapons of mass destruction," and posed no
threat to the US. Moreover, alarmist suggestions that the Baghdad regime
was working with the al-Qaeda terror network likewise proved to be without
- So if the official reasons given for the war were untrue,
why did the United States attack?
- Whatever the secondary reasons for the Iraq war, the
crucial factor in President Bush's decision to attack was to help Israel.
With support from Israel and America's Jewish-Zionist lobby, and prodded
by Jewish "neo-conservatives" holding high-level positions in
his administration, President Bush - who was already fervently committed
to Israel - resolved to invade and subdue one of Israel's chief regional
- This is so widely understood in Washington that US Senator
Ernest Hollings was moved in May 2004 to acknowledge that the US invaded
Iraq "to secure Israel," and "everybody" knows it.
He also identified three of the influential pro-Israel Jews in Washington
who played an important role in prodding the US into war: Richard Perle,
chair of the Pentagon's Defense Policy Board; Paul Wolfowitz, Deputy Defense
Secretary; and Charles Krauthammer, columnist and author. 
- Hollings referred to the cowardly reluctance of his Congressional
colleagues to acknowledge this truth openly, saying that "nobody is
willing to stand up and say what is going on." Due to "the pressures
we get politically," he added, members of Congress uncritically support
Israel and its policies.
- Some months before the invasion, retired four-star US
Army General and former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Wesley Clark said
in an interview:
- "Those who favor this attack [by the US against
Iraq] now will tell you candidly, and privately, that it is probably true
that Saddam Hussein is no threat to the United States. But they are afraid
at some point he might decide if he had a nuclear weapon to use it against
- Fervently Pro-Israel
- President Bush's fervent support for Israel and its hardline
premier is well known. He reaffirmed it, for example, in June 2002 in a
major speech on the Middle East. In the view of "leading Israeli commentators,"
the London Times reported, the address was "so pro-Israel that it
might have been written by Ariel Sharon." 
- Condoleeza Rice, Bush's National Security Advisor, echoed
the President's outlook in a May 2003 interview, saying that the "security
of Israel is the key to security of the world." 
- In an address to pro-Israel activists at the 2004 convention
of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), Bush said: "The
United States is strongly committed, and I am strongly committed, to the
security of Israel as a vibrant Jewish state." He also told the gathering:
"By defending the freedom and prosperity and security of Israel, you're
also serving the cause of America." 
- Long Range Plans
- Jewish-Zionist plans for war against Iraq had been in
place for years.
- In mid-1996, a policy paper prepared for then-Israeli
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu outlined a grand strategy for Israel
in the Middle East. Entitled "A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing
the Realm," it was written under the auspices of an Israeli think
tank, the Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies. Specifically,
it called for an "effort [that] can focus on removing Saddam Hussein
from power in Iraq, an important Israeli strategic objective in its own
- The authors of "A Clean Break" included Richard
Perle, Douglas Feith, and David Wurmser, three influential Jews who later
held high-level positions in the Bush administration, 2001-2004: Perle
as chair of the Defense Policy Board, Feith as Undersecretary of Defense,
and Wurmser as special assistant to the Undersecretary of State for Arms
- The role played by Bush administration officials who
are associated with two major pro-Zionist "neoconservative" research
centers has come under scrutiny from The Nation, the influential public
affairs weekly. 
- The author, Jason Vest, examined the close links between
the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA) and the Center
for Security Policy (CSP), detailing the ties between these groups and
various politicians, arms merchants, military men, wealthy pro-Israel American
Jews, and Republican presidential administrations.
- JINSA and CSP members, notes Vest, "have ascended
to powerful government posts, where... they've managed to weave a number
of issues - support for national missile defense, opposition to arms control
treaties, championing of wasteful weapons systems, arms aid to Turkey and
American unilateralism in general - into a hard line, with support for
the Israeli right at its core... On no issue is the JINSA/CSP hard line
more evident than in its relentless campaign for war - not just with Iraq,
but 'total war,' as Michael Ledeen, one of the most influential JINSAns
in Washington, put it... For this crew, 'regime change' by any means necessary
in Iraq, Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia and the Palestinian Authority is an
- Samuel Francis, author, editor and columnist, has also
looked into the "neo-conservative" role in fomenting war. 
- "My own answer," he wrote, "is that the
lie [that a massively-armed Iraq posed a grave and imminent threat to the
US] was fabricated by neo-conservatives in the administration whose first
loyalty is to Israel and its interests and who wanted the United States
to smash Iraq because it was the biggest potential threat to Israel in
the region. They are known to have been pushing for war with Iraq since
at least 1996, but they could not make an effective case for it until after
Sept. 11, 2001...
- "What has been happening inside the Bush administration
is no less a nest of treason than the Soviet spy rings of the New Deal
era, and if political reality doesn't demand its exposure, simple loyalty
to the United States does."
- In the aftermath of the 2001 Nine-Eleven terror attacks,
ardently pro-Zionist "neo-conservatives" in the Bush administration
- who for years had sought a Middle East war to bolster Israel's security
in the region - exploited the tragedy to press their agenda. In this they
were backed by the Israeli government, which also pressured the White House
to strike Iraq.
- The Jerusalem correspondent for the Guardian, the respected
British daily, reported in August 2002: "Israel signalled its decision
yesterday to put public pressure on President George Bush to go ahead with
a military attack on Iraq, even though it believes Saddam Hussein may well
retaliate by striking Israel." 
- Three months before the US invasion, the well-informed
Washington journalist Robert Novak reported that Israeli prime minister
Sharon was telling American political leaders that "the greatest US
assistance to Israel would be to overthrow Saddam Hussein's Iraqi regime."
Moreover, added Novak, "that view is widely shared inside the Bush
administration, and is a major reason why US forces today are assembling
for war." 
- Israel's spy agencies were a "full partner"
with the US and Britain in producing greatly exaggerated prewar assessments
of Iraq's ability to wage war, a former senior Israeli military intelligence
official has acknowledged. Shlomo Bron, a brigadier general in the Israel
army reserves, and a senior researcher at a major Israeli think tank, said
that intelligence provided by Israel played a significant role in supporting
the US and British case for making war. Israeli intelligence agencies,
he said, "badly overestimated the Iraqi threat to Israel and reinforced
the American and British belief that the weapons [of mass destruction]
- For some Jewish leaders, the Iraq war is part of a long-range
effort to install Israel-friendly regimes across the Middle East. Norman
Podhoretz, a prominent Jewish writer and an ardent supporter of Israel,
has been for years editor of Commentary, the influential Zionist monthly.
In the Sept. 2002 issue he wrote: "The regimes that richly deserve
to be overthrown and replaced are not confined to the three singled-out
members of the axis of evil [Iraq, Iran, North Korea]. At a minimum, the
axis should extend to Syria and Lebanon and Libya, as well as 'friends'
of America like the Saudi royal family and Egypt's Hosni Mubarak, along
with the Palestinian Authority, whether headed by Arafat or one of his
- Patrick J. Buchanan, the well-known writer and commentator,
and former White House Communications director, has been blunt in identifying
those who pushed for war: 
- "We charge that a cabal of polemicists and public
officials seek to ensnare our country in a series of wars that are not
in America's interests. We charge them with colluding with Israel to ignite
those wars and destroy the Oslo Accords. We charge them with deliberately
damaging US relations with every state in the Arab world that defies Israel
or supports the Palestinian people's right to a homeland of their own.
We charge that they have alienated friends and allies all over the Islamic
and Western world through their arrogance, hubris, and bellicosity...
- "Cui Bono? For whose benefit these endless wars
in a region that holds nothing vital to America save oil, which the Arabs
must sell us to survive? Who would benefit from a war of civilizations
between the West and Islam?
- "Answer: one nation, one leader, one party. Israel,
- Uri Avnery - an award-winning Israeli journalist and
author, and a three-time member of Israel's parliament - sees the Iraq
war as an expression of immense Jewish influence and power. In an essay
written some weeks after the US invasion, he wrote: 
- "Who are the winners? They are the so-called neo-cons,
or neo-conservatives. A compact group, almost all of whose members are
Jewish. They hold the key positions in the Bush administration, as well
as in the think-tanks that play an important role in formulating American
policy and the ed-op pages of the influential newspapers... The immense
influence of this largely Jewish group stems from its close alliance with
the extreme right-wing Christian fundamentalists, who nowadays control
Bush's Republican party. ...Seemingly, all this is good for Israel. America
controls the world, we control America. Never before have Jews exerted
such an immense influence on the center of world power."
- In Britain, a veteran member of Britain's House of Commons
bluntly declared in May 2003 that Jews had taken control of America's foreign
policy, and had succeeded in pushing the US into war. "A Jewish cabal
have taken over the government in the United States and formed an unholy
alliance with fundamentalist Christians," said Tam Dalyell, a Labour
party deputy and the longest-serving House member. "There is far too
much Jewish influence in the United States," he added. 
- For many years now, American presidents of both parties
have been staunchly committed to Israel and its security. This entrenched
policy is an expression of the Jewish-Zionist grip on America's political
and cultural life. It was fervent support for Israel - shared by President
Bush, high-ranking administration officials and nearly the entire US Congress
- that proved crucial in the decision to invade and subdue one of Israel's
greatest regional enemies.
- While the unprovoked US invasion of Iraq may have helped
Israel, just as those who wanted and planned for the war had hoped, it
has been a calamity for America and the world. It has cost tens of thousands
of lives and many tens of billions of dollars. Around the world, it has
generated unmatched distrust and hostility toward the US. In Arab and Muslim
countries, it has fueled intense hatred of the United States, and has brought
many new recruits to the ranks of anti-American terrorists.
- Americans have already paid a high price for their nation's
commitment to Israel. We will pay an ever higher price - not just in dollars
or international prestige, but in the lives of young men squandered for
the interests of a foreign state - until the Jewish-Zionist hold on US
political life is finally broken.
- 1. Remarks by Ernest F. Hollings, May 20, 2004. Congressional
Record - Senate, May 20, 2004, pages S5921-S5925.
- 2. The Guardian (London), August 20, 2002.
- 3. R. Dunn, "Sharon Could Have Written Speech,"
The Times (London), June 26, 2002.
- 4. A. S. Lewin, "Israel's Security is Key to Security
of Rest of World," Jewish Press (Brooklyn, NY), May 14, 2003. Rice's
interview with the Israeli daily Yediot Aharnonot is quoted.
- 5. Bush address to AIPAC convention, Washington, DC,
May 18, 2004.
- 6. Text posted at: www.israeleconomy.org/strat1.htm See
also: B. Whitaker, "Playing Skittles with Saddam," The Guardian
(London), Sept. 3, 2002.
- 7. J. Vest, "The Men From JINSA and CSP," The
Nation, Sept. 2, 2002.
- 8. S. Francis, "Weapons of Mass Deception: Somebody
Lied," column of Feb. 6, 2004.
- 9. Jonathan Steele, "Israel Puts Pressure on US
to Strike Iraq," The Guardian (London), August 17, 2002.
- 10. Robert Novak, "Sharon's War?," column of
Dec. 26, 2002.
- 11. L. King, "Ex-General Says Israel Inflated Iraqi
Threat," Los Angeles Times, Dec. 5, 2003.
- 12. P. J. Buchanan, "Whose War?," The American
Conservative, March 24, 2003.
- 13. Uri Avnery, "The Night After," CounterPunch,
April 10, 2003.
- 14. F. Nelson, "Anger Over Dalyell's 'Jewish Cabal'
Slur," The Scotsman (Edinburgh), May 5, 2003; M. White, "Dalyell
Steps Up Attack On Levy," The Guardian (London), May 6, 2003.
- Mark Weber is director of the Institute for Historical
Review. He studied history at the University of Illinois (Chicago), the
University of Munich, Portland State University and Indiana University
(M.A., 1977). For nine years he served as editor of the IHR's Journal of
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