IraqWar case study
The UK media subjected the Iraq invasion to more scrutiny than their counterparts in the US, but this was constrained by strong and increasingly coordinated
strategic efforts to ‘manage’ public opinion regarding the war (see, for example,
Tumber and Palmer, 2004; Miller 2004b). In 2014, over a decade after the
invasion of Iraq, the idea of the release of the Chilcott Inquiry report in the UK
seems a futuristic fantasy. Nichols and McChesney were right to talk in the US
of ‘tragedy and farce’ (2005): they give an extensive
policy process on a day-to-day
basis, Bush made little attempt at comprehensive narrative. The
presidency, and Bush’s life, were represented as a series of
isolated choices, unconnected to what happened prior to and after the
moment of decision. 3 The
Iraqwar, one might conclude from Bush’s book, was about just two
choices: to invade and, years later, to surge. Neither book suffices as
. Zimmerman concluded that “They’re going to war and
there’s not a damn piece of evidence to substantiate
In addition to using dubious evidence to support its
intention of going to war with Iraq, the Bush administration attempted
to politicize the intelligence process in the run-up to the Iraqwar in several
ways: 1) by creating new bureaucratic units to bypass the intelligence
(1995), Kosovo (1999), and the Iraqwar (2003). In some cases, the
ventures have been accomplished at acceptable cost as in World War II,
Panama, Lebanon 1958, Grenada, the Gulf War, Haiti, Bosnia, and Kosovo.
In others, support dropped as costs grew, as in Korea, Vietnam, and Iraq
(and maybe, now, in Afghanistan). And in others, the public’s
dismay at rising costs was met by abrupt early withdrawal as in Lebanon
This chapter examines the erroneous US intelligence prediction regarding the likely presence of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) in Iraq in 2002. It also examines why lawmakers in Washington, D.C., failed to question these estimates more thoroughly before they led the nation into war in the Persian Gulf the following year. It provides a sense of the many potential pitfalls in the conduct of intelligence that make some degree of failure inevitable. A useful analytic construct for understanding the hazards of intelligence is the so-called intelligence cycle, which traces how America's secret agencies gather, interpret, and disseminate information. The chapter suggests that members of Congress have displayed a range of responses to the call for greater intelligence accountability. One of the main catalysts for motility has been a sense of injured institutional pride, when lawmakers perceive that intelligence officials have failed to treat Congress with appropriate respect.
This book offers a new way of looking at Irish foreign policy, linking its development with changes in Irish national identity. Many debates within contemporary international relations focus on the relative benefits of taking a traditional interest-based approach to the study of foreign policy as opposed to the more recently developed identity-based approach. This book takes the latter and, instead of looking at Irish foreign policy through the lens of individual, geo-strategic or political interests, is linked to deeper identity changes. As one Minister of Foreign Affairs put it; ‘Irish foreign policy is about much more than self-interest. The elaboration of our foreign policy is also a matter of self-definition—simply put, it is for many of us a statement of the kind of people that we are’. Using this approach, four grand narratives are identified which, it is argued, have served to shape the course of Irish foreign policy and which have, in turn, been impacted by the course of Ireland's international experience. The roots and significance of each of these narratives; Ireland as a European Republic, as a Global Citizen, as an Anglo-American State and as an Irish Nation are then outlined and their significance assessed. The shape of Irish foreign-policy-making structures is then drawn out and the usefulness of this book's approach to Irish foreign policy is then considered in three brief case studies: Ireland's European experience, its neutrality and Irish policy towards the 2003 Iraq War.
This book is about the transformation of Germany's security and defence policy in the time between the 1991 Gulf War and the 2003 war against Iraq. It traces and explains the reaction of Europe's biggest and potentially most powerful country to the ethnic wars of the 1990s, the emergence of large-scale terrorism, and the new US emphasis on pre-emptive strikes. Based on an analysis of Germany's strategic culture, it portrays Germany as a security actor and indicates the conditions and limits of the new German willingness to participate in international military crisis management that developed over the 1990s. The book debates the implications of Germany's transformation for Germany's partners and neighbours, and explains why Germany said ‘yes’ to the war in Afghanistan, but ‘no’ to the Iraq War. Based on a comprehensive study of the debates of the German Bundestag and actual German policy responses to the international crises between 1991 and 2003, it provides insights into the causes and results of Germany's transformation.
Beneath the violence of the U.S. war in Iraq was a subterranean conflict between President Bush and Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, rooted in their different beliefs and leadership styles. Bush was prepared to pay a high cost in American lives, treasure, and prestige to win. Rumsfeld favored turning the war over to the Iraqis, and was comfortable with the risk that Iraq would disintegrate into chaos. Only after Bush removed Rumsfeld in late 2006 did he bring U.S. strategy into line with his goals, sending additional troops to Iraq and committing to continued U.S. involvement. Bush abandoned Rumsfeld’s withdrawal approach, predicated upon the beliefs that “it's the Iraqis’ country,” and “we have to take our hand off the bicycle seat.” In Leaders in Conflict, Stephen Benedict Dyson shows that Bush and Rumsfeld thought about international politics, and about leadership, in divergent ways. The president embraced binary thinking, was visceral in his commitment to the war, and had a strong belief that the U.S. both could and should shape events in Iraq. The secretary saw the world as complex, and was skeptical of the extent of U.S. influence over events and of the moral imperative to stay involved. The book is based upon more than two dozen interviews with administration insiders, and appeals to those interested in the U.S. foreign policy, the U.S. presidency, leadership and wartime decision making.
Mobilising for battle: The news media and
war from Vietnam to Iraq
This chapter examines the study of news media and war, moving on to
review key works that have analysed, in a systematic fashion, the content and
framing1 of wartime news media coverage. Beginning with Vietnam, these
systematic studies include work on the 1982 Falklands conflict, the 1992
Gulf War, and three studies of the 2003 IraqWar. We pay close attention to
the descriptive claims these studies make, to the explanations offered for the
coverage that they observe, and to the strengths and
The first European Union's (EU) enlargement of the twenty-first century coincides with a period of international tension and transition. Tensions have been apparent over: the war in Iraq, the 'War on Terror', immigration, organised crime, ethnic confrontation, human rights, energy resources and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD). The EU has made genuine progress in developing its security policies since the launch of the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) in the Treaty on European Union (TEU). This book examines the impact that enlargement will have on leadership within the EU, a pre-requisite for policy coherence. It focuses on what has been Europe's most significant region in terms of security challenges and international responses since the end of the Cold War: the Balkan. The book provides an overview of the foreign policy priorities and interests of the new member states (NMS), highlighting areas of match and mismatch with those of the EU fifteen. Counter-terrorism has emerged from the shadows of the EU's Third Pillar, and has been propelled to the forefront of the EU's internal agenda, driven by the demands of the 'War on Terror'. The book discusses the core elements of the EU's emerging common external border management, with a focus on the creation of the EU's new External Borders Agency and the Schengen Borders Code. While the first two are declarative partnership and declarative negativism, the last two reflect the struggle between pragmatism and Soviet-style suspicion of Western bureaucrats.