The recent emigration of refugees seeking political asylum in Europe has its origin with the invasion of the Middle East by the coalition forces led by the United States of America (USA).
Prior to 1990, the Middle East enjoyed a certain degree of peace and stability. But all these changed when the USA conspired to invade Iraq.
To this end, its envoy intimated former Iraq president Saddam Hussein that the USA would have no qualms, whatsoever, should Iraq annex Kuwait, its 36th province.
Emboldened by this assurance, Iraq invaded Kuwait. This gave USA and its allies a rare opportunity, to the utter amazement of Saddam, to jump on the bandwagon in defence of Kuwait and Iraq’s potential military threat to Saudi Arabia as perceived by the USA.
As a result, Iraq suffered an ignominious defeat with heavy casualties and massive decimation of its over 1 000 tanks and aircrafts.
Not long after this invasion, during the second Gulf War, the strong Jewish lobby in the USA Senate harbouring a bitter grudge against Saddam, for having used scud missiles against Israel, during its brief war with the Palestinians, urged George Bush to declare war on Iraq.
Without seeking a mandate from the United Nations (UN) Security Council, the allied forces, under the pretext of a regime change and destroying weapons of mass destruction, which Iraq was alleged to possess, launched over 700 “shock and awe” airstrikes with a devastating effect reducing Baghdad to rubble. This made the life of the people even more difficult.
The destruction of the countries’ infrastructure and the control of its oil wells meant more lucrative business opportunities for the USA which favoured the Shiite at the expense of marginalisation of the Sunni Sect.
As a consequence, a bloody civil war ensued, which the Shiite dominated government of Iraq has failed to control.
Even in Afghanistan, the USA in order to safeguard its hegemony, equipped the Taliban with the most sophisticated weapons to fight for them a proxy war against Russians.
When they were defeated, the goal of the USA was achieved only to leave the Taliban in the lurch. Thus, the genie created by the USA emerged to fill in the political vacuum to its own detriment.
Nevertheless, the coalition forces succeeded in a regime change by eliminating Saddam and Gaddafi, but have dismally failed to depose Assad of Syria.
In the process, thousands of civilians have been killed by the drones as a result of ‘collateral damage’ a jargon often repeated by the coalition forces.
Needless to say a number of these civilian deaths far exceeded the number of Iraqis killed by the brutality of Saddam’s three decades of dictatorial rule.
However, under the present situation the USA and its allies should take an unpalatable decision in conjunction with the governments of the conflicting regions in the Middle-East and initiate a negotiated diplomatic solution. This perhaps may instil into the terrorists some form of humanity.
Failure to this, the coalition forces will find it very difficult to defeat an elusive and irregular army of extremists as they will be driven underground to carry out sporadic attacks to kill more civilians.
If this happens, then it is very likely that this ‘tit for tat’ a mini Third World War of 21st Century will engulf the whole of the Middle East and Europe in a prolonged conflict and conflagration of a magnitude the world may never have witnessed before. n