Iraq's Past

by Miguel de Icaza

I bought my copy of Robert Fisk's The Great War for Civilization: The Conquest of the Middle East his latest book on the various conflicts in the middle-east. I will likely talk more about the book in the future as it is packed with gems.

I have been savoring this book for a while, not wanting to read it very quickly, I have paced myself and allowing myself sometime to research some of the stories and compare notes with other texts on the various events he describes.

Anyways, tonight I reached the chapter on the formation of modern Iraq. The stories, the anecdotes and the background information in here justify getting the book, even if you only read this chapter.

Iraq is a hot topic of debate and has been covered non-stop for the last couple of years but the information I found on this chapter is all fresh.

The chapter begins with the liberation of Iraq by the British troops in 1917; the proclamations of "we come here as liberators"; the early mistakes of the British invaders which would lead to an insurgency that they would not be able to control. The similarities with the current invasion are striking, down to 'we can not leave Iraq now, have to finish the job'.

It gets better and better on every page. I won't spoil the rest, but its a great educational read.

Posted on 19 Dec 2005