4 July 2016 - Bilal Dhafer’s sister was just 10 when she was killed by a US air strike targeting al-Qaeda operatives that destroyed part of their family house — a victim of what the west termed “collateral damage”. Two years later, his father perished when a bomb planted by Iraqi extremists exploded outside his car-repair shop in Baghdad.
By then his and his family’s hopes that Iraq would be a better place in the wake of the 2003 US- and UK-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein, the Iraqi dictator, had been dashed as violence and chaos wreaked havoc across the country. Today, as the jobless 26-year-old political science graduate struggles to support his mother and younger brother, he bitterly questions the cost of the war — his relatives are among the estimated 160,000 civilians killed in 13 years of carnage that has followed Saddam’s fall.
“Saddam Hussein should have been removed from power in the 1990s [during the first Gulf war], that’s what I was taught,” Mr Dhafer says. “But now I think it would have been better if he had stayed. Anyone who joined the war in Iraq helped destroy us.” read more>>>
Perhaps sharing infinite sadness makes it easier to bear. Many people cried, or prayed. I saw a Christian clergyman lighting candles and making the sign of the cross as well as young people chanting a Shia Muslim anthem for the dead.
Just because so many Iraqi civilians have been massacred does not make senseless killing any easier to bear for the survivors.
It is doubtful whether Iraqis who are so caught up in the pain of daily life will take much interest in the long-delayed publication of the UK's official inquiry into its part in the invasion of 2003.
'One thousand Saddams now' read more>>>
5 July 2016 - What effect did the Iraq war have on Iraqis themselves?
One man who found himself at the centre of the most euphoric moment of the war - the toppling of the famous statue of Saddam Hussein in central Baghdad - is Kadhim Sharif Hassan Al-Jabbouri.
Speaking to the BBC, he said he regrets helping to take down the sculpture. watch video>>>
Blood and treasure: The costs of the Iraq war4 July 2016 - Hundreds of thousands killed, millions forced from their homes, and billions of dollars squandered. The legacy of Iraq's war, in numbers read more>>>