At the Azores summit five years ago today President Bush declared that the US “has the sovereign authority to use force in assuring its own national security.” This sentiment was echoed by Prime Minister Blair: Iraq was a threat to us and its neighbours. Notably Iraq was said to be a threat with or without Saddam. That is, even if Saddam left Iraq - something which was rumoured to be a possibility at the time - the Anglo-American led 'coalition' would invade anyway.
The rhetoric has continued to morph whenever the lies have become too untennable to sustain. The Weapons of Mass Destruction lie was soon outed: there weren't any. Iraq's military capabilities were crippled during the previous Iraq invasion and hadn't been rebuilt. Once this became clear and undeniable then the reason for the Anglo-American invasion changed. We were then told that the invasion was about removing Saddam from power. History was rewritten.
But at the Azores summit prior to the invasion - as Chomsky says in his August 2003 article Preventative War 'The Supreme Crime' - the Anglo-American position was clear: even if Saddam left Iraq the invasion would go ahead regardless. The invasion had - and has - nothing to do with removing Saddem from power. This was simply another lie to cover up the previous one.
Follow The Money
Who has gained most from the Iraq invasion? Not the 1,000,000 dead Iraqi's, or the 4,000,000 Iraqi's who've been displaced. And not the dead, injured and unnecessarily put at risk British and US soldiers. The people who gained most are the same people who always gain most from war and conflict: international banks, defence contractors, oil corporations, and those wishing to expand American empire.
The US and British governments wanted war and chaos in Iraq and the middle east and they got it. They lied 5 years ago as they lie today because the truth makes them look like cold calous murderers with no regard for the suffereing of others.