By Mahmoud Fouly, Abdel-Maguid Kamal–
CAIRO, April 24 (Xinhua) — The U.S. interference in the Middle East in general and in Iraq in particular has been “destructive and disastrous” and U.S. Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary recent regret about invasion of Iraq are only meant to gain an electoral plus, said Arab political experts.
Clinton, former U.S. secretary of state turned Democratic front-runner in the upcoming presidential elections in November, has recently stated that voting as then-senator for the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003 was her “greatest regret,” describing the move as “a mistake.”
“It did not turn out the way that I thought it would,” she told the ABC News in an interview on Thursday, “I regret that and I have said that it was a mistake.”
Smeared by fatal mistakes, aggressions and violations, the failure of U.S. war on Iraq is as clear as day for most of the American people, and Clinton’s statement is seen as an attempt to cleanse her hands off the war in a bid to win more voters in the coming presidential elections.
“Clinton’s remarks are only meant to serve her in the presidential elections, but who will compensate the Iraqi people for the ruins, the lost souls, the refugees and the torture?” said former Assistant Arab League Secretary General Mohamed Sobeih.
Sobeih told Xinhua that all U.S. justifications to invade Iraq turned out to be “lies” after finding out that Iraq was free from nuclear activities and chemical weapons and that Saddam Hussein had no ties with Al-Qaeda terror organization.
“The U.S. invasion of Iraq was originally motivated by the so-called ‘New Middle East’ project to defragment the Arab region, which can be seen now for real in Iraq, Syria, Libya and other Arab states,” the ex-Arab League diplomat lamented.
According to some experts, Clinton is undergoing a stage of “political imbalance” due to the upcoming presidential elections that sometimes push candidates to make statements “they may not believe in.”
“Her remarks are made for electoral purposes to satisfy the American citizens who suffered the consequences of the invasion of Iraq and are now aware of the big mistakes made during that war,” said Saeed al-Lawindi, a political researcher and expert of international relations at Cairo-based Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies.
“The U.S. interference in the Middle East has been completely destructive,” the expert told Xinhua, arguing “the Arab region is in need to change its strategy towards the United States,” said Lawindi.
The U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East region has always been in favor of its number one ally Israel, which in turn is against the interests of various Arab states that look at Israel as an occupier of a fellow Arab country.
“The United States has changed its strategy in the Middle East from direct invasion to indirect motivation of sectarian strives under the pretext of human rights concerns and others,” Lawindi told Xinhua.
In the light of the recent U.S.-sponsored West-Iran deal that conditionally allows Iran’s nuclear activities, some believe the United States use it as a threat to urge oil-rich Arab states to purchase U.S. weapons, welcome U.S. military bases and pay for U.S. protection.
“The United States play the role of the ‘world police’ in the Middle East,” said Lawindi, lamenting the dependence of some Arab administrations on Washington despite their awareness of its intentions and goals.
Fady al-Husseini, a researcher of Middle East affairs, believes that all disasters in the Middle East have something to do with the United States, arguing that terror activities in the region mounted following the U.S. invasion of Iraq.
“The greatest crisis facing the Arab region is the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), a terror organization that came to being in 2004, one year after the U.S. military interference in Iraq,” Husseini told Xinhua.
He continued that even Al-Qaeda organization was not present in the region before the U.S. invasion of Iraq, stressing that every U.S. intervention in the region leaves behind catastrophic consequences.
“U.S. interference anywhere is usually connected with a specific strategy; once it is carried out, the Americans leave regardless of any consequences,” the researcher said, arguing that “direct U.S. intervention in the region is over now due to its high cost.”
With regards to Clinton’s regret about voting for Iraq’s invasion, Husseini said it’s only aimed to gain voters’ nod in the upcoming elections, noting the American people see that the Iraqi war dragged their country to “the Mideast mud.”
“The Iraqi war also caused big recession to the U.S. economy and Clinton wanted to disown it ahead of the elections,” the Arab expert told Xinhua, noting there are growing U.S. decision-making tendency to gradually limit presence in the Middle East.
At the level of public opinion, average citizens in Egypt and many Arab countries believe that the Middle East and Iraq in particular has been better off without the U.S. interference that pushed some Arab states towards instability and insecurity.
“The United States is an aggressive country that only plots to control the resources and the oil of Arab states,” said Saeed Ahmed, 40, at one of the main streets of the Egyptian capital city Cairo.
“Look at Iraq 13 years after the U.S. invasion! It has not yet been stabilized,” the man sadly told Xinhua, hoping for security and stability of turmoil-stricken Arab countries.
At a coffee shop in Giza province near Cairo, Ibrahim al-Sayyid, 35, condemned what he described as “the U.S. double-standard policy in the Middle East,” accusing the world power of “blind support for Israel at the expense of Palestinian rights.”