Talk:Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Massive Update[edit]

The article is filled with unsupported and unsupportable facts and statements. Worse, it was too thick and dense to be of much use to the reader.

Don't like the new organization? Fine, improve it. Move it to a better structure. Don't just restore the old ^%#@. Some of the text deleted was probably true, but was not supported. Some of the text deleted mistated the supporting reference. I left a lot of unsupported stuff in because it articulates a POV necessary for the article's validity, and if I deleted all of the unsupported stuff, the resulting impact upon the NPOV would be negative.

If you have unsupported text, just find some support in publications that check facts, particularly peer-reviewed journals or the like.

The ICC stuff got moved to the ICC and the invasion article, why have two articles on this? Raggz 08:29, 21 May 2007 (UTC)

A dispute exists over the legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq.[edit]

A dispute exists over the legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. This is likely true, but is the opening thesis for original research. Who is disputing this? The need for a citation here is important because it give a contextual reference to the thesis. A dispute within the UN is different from the 100 Christian activists cited later. Is there any dispute on this at the UN or ICC? If there is (and I do not believe that there is), why not cite these central references. If this "dispute" is from nations (Iran) for example, then cite that.

The reversion violated Wikipedia policy. Policy requires that challenged text be supported before reversion. Please comply with policy. Raggz 22:54, 21 May 2007 (UTC)

Are you saying that there needs to be a citation for "A dispute exists over the legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq."? —Christopher Mann McKayuser talk 19:21, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

The debate centers around the question whether the invasion was an unprovoked assault on an independent country that may have breached international law -- or whether the conditions set in place after the Gulf War allowed the resumption if Iraq did not uphold to the Security Council resolutions. [1] Those arguing for its legality often cite Congressional Joint Resolution 114 and previous UN Security Council resolutions, as well as Resolution 1441, stating these documents allow for military action. Those arguing against its legality also cite much the same sources, stating they do not actually permit war but instead lay out conditions that must be met before war can be declared. Critics often cite the Downing Street memo as further proof the war was waged under misleading terms. The terms of the debate change depending on the subject of domestic or international law.

This is all OR. I am unaware of debate if "the question whether the invasion was an unprovoked assault on an independent country that may have breached international law". This is OR. This article lists the many international laws that Iraq was found to have violated by the UN Security Council. There is no significant debate on this point, not even in the text that follows here which agres that Iraq violated international law and that Security Council resolutions warned Iraq about this. So again, what debate? If such exists, cite it.

There WAS a debate. Why not summarize the UN Security Council debate rather than argue with it? There are people and nations (even the UN Secretary General) who disagree with the decisions, you may cite all of that, but arguments after the decision should all be sourced, not OR. Raggz 23:07, 21 May 2007 (UTC)

"This is all OR" - Do you know what OR is? Beause in the recent past you have suggested deleting half of Human rights and the United States claiming OR, when in fact, it was not OR at all. I think you are largly misunderstood to what OR is and you should read WP:OR, because not all of what you quoted above is OR. —Christopher Mann McKayuser talk 19:21, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

The United States structured its reports to the United Nations Security Council[edit]

"The United States structured its reports to the United Nations Security Council around alleged intelligence from the Central Intelligence Agency and MI5 stating that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction. The U.S. claimed that justification rested upon Iraq's violation of several U.N. Resolutions, most recently UN Security Council Resolution 1441. [16] U.S. president George W. Bush claimed Iraq's supposed WMDs posed a significant threat to the United States and its allies [17] [18] , but offered no evidence that Iraq had the intention or the means for delivering a WMD attack against the U.S. U.N. inspection team UNMOVIC, before completing its UN-mandate or completing its report was ordered out by the UN because the US-led invasion appeared imminent."

Here is another example of OR. Nowhere in the UN section does the article describe what the UN determined. It is mere argument and OR. Please do not revert this (or other) OR. Raggz 23:17, 21 May 2007 (UTC)

This is not an example of OR, at least not the whole paragraph. It can be reinforced with more references so it is not disputed, but the paragraph as a whole is not OR. What part are you suggesting is OR? The second part of the last sentence? —Christopher Mann McKayuser talk 19:30, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

The United Nations Charter determines what is a legal act of international aggression[edit]

"The United Nations Charter determines what is a legal act of international aggression and what is not. Article 24-1 requires that UN "...Members confer on the Security Council primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, and agree that in carrying out its duties under this responsibility the Security Council acts on their behalf." The United Nations Security Council has considered the 2003 invasion, and has elected not to find any violation of international law. Although there are many members who disagree with this decision (including the UN Secretary General) Article 25-1 requires that "the Members of the United Nations agree to accept and carry out the decisions of the Security Council in accordance with the present Charter" once a decision is reached."

Side Show Bob suggests that the Security Council has not decided to ignore the 2003 invasion. Logically there are only two ways that this could be true?

  • The UN doesn't know that Iraq was invaded.
  • The UN decided that no violation of international law occured.

I claim that the UN's actions are analagous to dismissal of a petition by a court, without comment or prejudice? Is there another POV? Please put it here, don't just revert, that gets us nowhere.

I also claim that quoting the UN Charter is an appropriate source in regard to what the UN Charter says, despite the claims of Side Show Bob otherwise. Does anyone else have a problem with quoting the Charter? Raggz 01:22, 22 May 2007 (UTC)

This is not true. There is a third possibility - that UNSC members think that a violation has occurred but have decided to do nothing about it. The UNSC is allowed to act when there is a breach to international peace and security but it is not obliged to act. It is not a court of law. AndrewRT(Talk) 09:56, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
We could ngage in a debate if the UNSC is a court of law or not, it is a question of POV, and there is support for both sides. It is a court of law in the sense that the King was once a court of law, and we can get into the interesting question of how the UN will need to create a new "Magna Carta". The UN Charter will require change, and certainly will evolve, but would this debate here help the Reader?
There is little doubt that members of the UNSC "think that a violation has occurred". This is a fact, and if you find it relevant, it would be improper to object to inclusion of any fact. There is no doubt that the UNSC does not "think that a violation has occurred", this too is a fact. We can go to the US Departtment of State, or the UN Ambassador to establish that at least one permenant member does not "think that a violation has occurred".
My POV is that if the UNSC was going to act, it would have done so, and that the "case is closed" for the UN and the ICC. The only remaining open case now is the Court of Public Opinion? Decisions by this court may well change international law? Raggz 18:28, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
Raggz, I have never suggested that the Security Council has not decided to ignore the 2003 invasion. Please read my comments before replying to them.
Moreover, I've never claimed that the UN Charter is not “an appropriate source in regard to what the UN Charter says”. However, we may not offer our own interpretations of what the Charter means, as you do when claim that “Legally the decision by the United Nations Security Council to not act in regard to the 2003 invasion authoritatively settles the issue of legality”.
Sideshow Bob Roberts 14:54, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
Well, we all have our POV. If I submit a petition to the court and it declines to consider it without coment, do we have an analogous situation? I claim that this is a fact, that this is what happened. What it MEANS is POV? If the legal cases are not all settled, the burden is yours to show what case is not settled? It will be helpful to the reader if you correct the statement you challenge, so long as you cite the open cases? I made the statement on the presumption that at this point, there are no open cases. It is important to all of the Readers to be clear about what has actually happened in international law. I have no problem at all with inclusion of a section that suggests that some feel that international law failed, as long as it is within the Court of Public opinion section. In fact, I think it should be there. A LOT of Readers not only need to know what happened, but need a focus for what they might focus upon next for reform? Raggz 18:10, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
I agree with what Sideshow Bob Roberts and AndrewRT have stated above.
In response to "There is little doubt that members of the UNSC 'think that a violation has occurred'. This is a fact, and if you find it relevant, it would be improper to object to inclusion of any fact. There is no doubt that the UNSC does not 'think that a violation has occurred'"(quote from Raggz) - There should not be a generalization of the UCSC as believing the invasion of Iraq was a violation of international law or was not violation of law. You should only reference what UNSC members believed, like how France is in agreement with Annan, in that the war was illegal,[2] or how U.K. & U.S. do not think the war was in violation of international law.—Christopher Mann McKayuser talk 19:47, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

British Law[edit]

The following text was deleted for lack of relevance. Large portions are also OR. Nothing deleted has any relevance to the topic.

"Nineteen anti-war protesters in Britain asked the Law Lords to set aside the conviction of 14 of the protesters for breaking the aggravated trespass law because they alleged that the Government had committed a crime of aggression under international law under section three of the Criminal Law Act 1967 and that their trespass was only an attempt to stop a larger crime. The five law lords unanimously dismissed the appeals. Lord Bingham – one of the five law lords – explained that the courts would not look at the prerogative powers of the Government in this area, because it was "very relevant" that Parliament had not considered whether the international law crime of aggression should be adopted into British law.[1][2]

Flight Lieutenant Malcolm Kendall-Smith was court-martialled in June 2005 for refusing to serve in Iraq. He argued that the invasion had been illegal and therefore he was not permitted to obey an illegal order. The court ruled that the legality of the invasion was not relevant to this case as the tour in question was after the post-invasion Security Council resolutions that recognised the occupation, and that as a junior officer he could not personally be guilty of aggression as this is a command crime.[citation needed]

On 22 May 2005, the British government declined a request from the families of soldiers killed in Iraq for an investigation into the legality of the war. The families are now seeking a judicial review of the request. [3] [4]" Raggz 01:30, 22 May 2007 (UTC)

This is very relevant because it covers the rare situation when a British court has been asked to rule on the legality of the invasion. Surely this is a key part of this article? AndrewRT(Talk) 09:57, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
Restore it if you believe this is important, from my pov it is not. These sort of cases crop up with each war (in the US) and have similar outcomes. It is important to maintain the NPOV, and I have deleted a lot of OR from the opposition. I have no objection to your restoration of any weakly supported material as an interim means of maintaining a NPOV IF it has contextual importance. One advantage of the "Court of Public Opinion" format is that citations within it have a easier time being cited. Opinion articles are now relevant, because the subject is "opinion"? I believe that opinion is an important issue for the article, but that it needs to be seperate from the legal cases? Public opinion forms law, and is very relevant. The article mixed law and opinion into an unsorted jumble. Raggz 17:58, 22 May 2007 (UTC)

The United Nations and the 2003 Invasion[edit]

Most of this section is OR. It is unhelpful to the Reader as well. I will be editing here next, deleting unsourced and OR statements. I prefere sub-sections - or some form of organization, some outline? I hope some one else will undertake this before I do. Whatever, if you don't want the job, don't revert without discussion here. Raggz 01:36, 22 May 2007 (UTC)

New Structure suggestion[edit]

The current article structure is:



2.0 International Law and the 2003 Invasion
2.1 The UN and Security Council Resolutions
3 The International Criminal Court and the 2003 Invasion

       The US Decision to Invade Iraq


2.2 Weapons of Mass Destruction
2.3 Human Rights Violations


1 Countries supporting and opposing the invasion
1.1 Countries supporting
1.2 National Opposition


4 The Court of Public Opinion and the 2003 Invasion
4.1 Polls
4.2 Germany
4.3 United Kingdom
4.3.1 Opinion of the UK Attorney General
4.3.2 Downing Street memo
4.3.3 English court rulings
4.4 Ireland
4.5 United States Public Opinion
4.6 Christian opposition to war
4.7 Opposition view of the invasion (possibly unneeded?)

As mentioned elsewhere, I think the Legality of the 2003 invasion of Iraq is a narrower topic compared to the legitimacy of the invasion. I suggest this is spun out into a sub-article (see the International Criminal Court article for an example of what I mean). I propose the following structure for the new article:


1. International law
1.1 UN Charter
1.2 ICC
1.3 UNSC
2. UNSC authorisations
3. Arguments used to defend the invasion
4. Legal rulings
4.1 US
4.2 UK
4.3 Germany
4.4 Ireland

This article can have:


1. Legality of the invasion
2. Weapons of Mass Destruction
3. Human Rights Violations

I dont think that support/opposition is directly relevant to this article and should be relegated to the "See also" section.

How does this look? AndrewRT(Talk) 10:09, 22 May 2007 (UTC)

It is a better outline than I would have offered. It flows, should help the Reader.Consider a section "International Law and the Invasion? Raggz 18:03, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
I don't see a need to "spin off" a new article, unless the subject is more than a paragraph or two. At this point the legal issues are resolved and can easily be summarized.Can it be easily summarized at this point? Raggz 18:53, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
I support a move to change this article to the "legality of the Iraq war". And I agree that the information about views of various countries and groups could be moved to a separate article. In short, I like AndrewRT's proposal for a new organization. --Mackabean 19:29, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
I'm fine with the change, neutral technically. It is a fact that the invasion ended two years ago, that Iraq is again a sovereign nation. The "war" continues. An early issue will be segmenting the "invasion" and the "war" since these are seperate issues. The "war did not begin in 2003 but in 1990 when the UNSC authorized it (a legal fact and not an opinion). The article you propose will not focus on the events prior to 2003 or after 2004? The "war" and the "invasion" are really part of the "Global War on Terror" and should be integrated closely with this article. Raggz 21:03, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
The new structure's a good idea. The legality of the invasion is a complex issue which deserves a separate article, it shouldn't be lumped into an article with lists of who supported and opposed the war and other vaguely related stuff. Sideshow Bob Roberts 21:09, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

"

Perhaps someone can explain how "legitimacy" is different from legality"? This will be important in the opening paragraph, and will help me understand the need to "spin-off". Legality is not a complex topic, the legal issue was dismissed without review, there were no briefs, no arguments. The ICC is irrelevant in regard to aggresion, the legal focus is the UNSC. The UNSG expressed an opinion, but is without competence in any legal sense so his opinion belongs in the "court of public opinion section". We already have a paragraph that totally covers the "legalities" of the invasion, there were no legal arguments submitted and none should be in the legal section.
The Reader deserves to know that there are no open legal issues, but that the "Court of Public Opinion" is fully engaged on the "legitimacy of law" in regard to this invasion. The Court of Public Opinion is powerful and important, it forms law but does not hold trials. The Reader deserves context: spining these away from each other denies the contextual linkage between them. If the legal section needed to be more than a paragraph, it required much detail, a spin-off might ofer an advantage to cunterbalance the loss of context to the reader. The first issue is: why should the legal issues require more than a paragraph? None were submitted or ruled upon. The legal issues that are complex are about what {1) the law should have been, (2) what the different court jurisdictions should have been, (3) was the dismissal fair, (4) is the UN and ICC structure effective etc etc. This ALL belongs in the "Court of Public Opinion" Section.
The spin-off will need begin with pretty much the same legal facts were are agreeing to here, so what is the point of seperation? Persuade me? Raggz 22:20, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
OK, it sounds like everyone is OK with slicing off the questions of legality into a separate article and moving the discussion of whic countries did and did not support the war somewhere else. Do we need to wait for more people to weigh in, or is it OK to go ahead?
As for the comments above about when the war began, and whether the article would discuss the invasion or the war. A few quick thoughts. First, I think the central question is the legality of the U.S. led invasion that began on March 20, 2003. I think that should be the focus of the article. I disagree with the statement that "the war began in 1990". I understand there are some people who argue that the invasion was simply a continuation of the first gulf war hostilities. I think, however, that it is fairly standard to see the two wars as separate campaigns (e.g., there are entirely separate articles across Wikipedia about the two wars) and that we should follow that convention. That said, I think it is impossible to totally ignore things that happened prior to 2003, as the UN resolutions throughout the 1990s form a central aspect of the legal debate. Second, while many (including the Bush Administration) see Iraq as part of the Global war on terror, I think we should sharply curtail legal questions related to the GWOT in this article. I believe there are other more appropriate places for those discussions (e.g., War on Terrorism).

"I disagree with the statement that "the war began in 1990"." You are entitled to your opinion. Fact: the UN Resolution that permitted the invasion is from 1990? You can and will find support to debate this claim of fact, but none that will dimiss it's validity. We thus need begin in 1990? There are two relevant POVs here: (1)The war started in 1990 and was authorized at that point by the UNSC. (2) It was an unrelated and seperate war. BOTH POVs belong in this propsed article? Without this "starting point" issue, does the Reader lose context? Raggz 22:44, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

"I think we should sharply curtail legal questions related to the GWOT in this article. I believe there are other more appropriate places for those discussions." I agree with the goal, but doubt that we can manage this. The 2003 invasion was undeniably the central battlefied in the Global War on Teror. While I agree with your idea, I question it's practicality. I raise the question because we are discussing a spin-off, and the Global War on Terror needs to be tightly integrated into the new article - for context? Raggz 22:50, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

My only other comment is that I would ask Raggz to stop making pronouncements about what is and is not a fact. Especially on questions of legal opinions, there are hardly any undeniable facts. Even when the U.S. supreme court offers a ruling, there is almost always one and usually 3 or 4 judges who disagree. The point is that the issues we are discussing in this article are hotly contested, so stating that something is an incontrovertible fact is both inaccurate and counter productive. Reasonable people disagree. that is the whole point of WP:NPOV. Thanks! --Mackabean 22:09, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
I would ask that my questions (above) be addresed first? I feel free to make pronouncements about what I believe to be facts and hope that you will also. I recognize that my opinion as to fact is mere opinion, as is yours. Discussion of what the facts are is central to our task? Please offer the open legal questions before the UNSC, or conceed that there are none? Raggz 22:26, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
We are not part of the "hottly contested" debate. This is an encyclopedia. NPOV does not mean that WP Verifiability may be neglected. "The threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth. "Verifiable" in this context means that any reader should be able to check that material added to Wikipedia has already been published by a reliable source. Editors should provide a reliable source for quotations and for any material that is challenged or is likely to be challenged, or it may be removed." A debate as to verifiability is appropraite here, the reason the article's NPOV has been so badly skewed was disregard for Policy. I am not stating ANYTHING in terms of the public debate, but only in terms of the finding by the only international judicial authority with jurisdiction for aggression. Do you believe this is part of a public debate, that we are debating opinions? Raggz 22:35, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

Massive concerns about the massive update[edit]

I did not have this page on my watchlist, so just now realized that a massive overhaul was being undertaken. I would like to voice my serious concerns about this overhaul. I believe it is being done with a very clear POV and in a manner not consistent with Wikipedia policies. For example, the statement that "Some of the text deleted was probably true, but was not supported." is troubling to me. If an editor believes that a statement in an article is correct but not adequately supported, they should try to find a cite or make a note on the talk page, not delete the statement.

More generally, statements like this: "Without any known pending UN or ICC investigations, from an international legal perspective the question of legitimacy seems settled" is clearly POV and highly problematic. The principal reason no case has been brought about the legitimacy of the war is that the current treaty establishing the ICC carries no definition of a crime of aggression. In other words, there is no jurisdiction as of yet to settle the question of war legitimacy once and for all. But that doesn't mean the issue is settled. Rather, it is one that was hotly debated by the legal community. To say that the legitimacy seems settled seems blatantly POV pushing. For the record, I supported the war, but that is beside the point. This article should still give a clear discussion of questions of legitimacy and legality, and the recent massive update is doing exactly the opposite. --Mackabean 19:11, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

The reason for the apparent POV shift is the inclusion of facts rather than OR. OR generally gets deleted, not modified. Wikipedia has a policy about truth when unsupported, delete OR even when "probably true". If an editor does not offer a citation, how may another understand the idea and it's context?
More generally, statements like this: "Without any known pending UN or ICC investigations, from an international legal perspective the question of legitimacy seems settled" is clearly POV and highly problematic". It is a statement of fact. The selection of facts often projects a POV. What the article may need are balancing facts. If an editor believes that there are legal proceedings underway or planned, this would be important to add. Every editor has a POV, balance can be attained by this, and your future edits and modifications. You could modify legitimacy to legality, just explain why the ICC investigation and the UNSC consideration were legal but not legitimate - or whatever theory may distinguish non-legitimacy and legality.
"The Court of Public Opinion is where issues of real legitamcy (rather than legalities) are debated and decided. What the law and legalities will become are determined in this "court". The article now better reflects the facts, is closer to a NPOV, and focuses the Reader's attention on the actual open and important issue. The legality issues ARE settled. Lawyers endlessly debate the law, and these mere legal debates are irrelevant to this article. What is relevant are the actual legal decisions.
Policy is the most important issue you raised. If policy has been violated, the changes should be reverted once we agree that this happened. You Say "If an editor believes that a statement in an article is correct but not adequately supported, they should try to find a cite or make a note on the talk page, not delete the statement." My understanding of the OR policy is that it gts deleted. An optional approach is to tag OR. I often tag, when the material is borderline OR, sort of supported but not directly supported. But really, the material in question was not borderline, not partially supported, possibly true, but OR.
This is offered: "In other words, there is no jurisdiction as of yet to settle the question of war legitimacy once and for all." This statement is factually untrue, and if within the article would be removed for this reason. It is both untrue and is original (flawed) research, and it is a projection of a POV without support. The UN Charter resolved the question in 1947, sixty years ago. I think it is Article 42, but you can look it up. (Technically you could make an argument that the statement is true for nations that do not recognize the UN Charter, but this group is so tiny as to be below our notice.) The jurisdiction of the ICC over "aggression" can come in only two ways. (1) ICC member nations resign from the UN or (2) the UN Security Council delegates this power (under it's supervision) to the ICC. Read Article 53. The issue of aggression was brought to the UNSC and dismissed without a hearing for the obvious lack of legal merit. This was the authoratative finding by the court (UNSC) WITH jurisdiction and competence. It is a distortion of fact and a projection of POV to claim otherwise. This is why we all need to refrain from making unsupported statements that from our POV seem true, they may not be true or even supportable. I have repeatedly done what I'm warning against, as this is an error I'm prone to and guard against. Raggz 21:46, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
I agree with Mackabean. As it now stands, the legal section of the article is based on unsupported claims and stupid misunderstandings.
The suggestion that the invasion must have been legal because neither the Security Council nor the ICC has taken action is patent nonsense. The Security Council will not act because both the United States and the United Kingdom have the power to veto any resolution. The ICC is only empowered to prosecute war crimes, crimes against humanity and the crime of genocide, so it is completely irrelevant to the question of whether the invasion was legal.
Sideshow Bob Roberts 21:09, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
Stupid misunderstandings? It is true that you have an exceptional mind, that you are among the brightest of Wikipedians, and that the rest of us may make "stupid misunderstandings". You also have a fine legal education and know more international law than anyone else. Your challenge is to find the patience necessary to collaberate with those without these advantages?
  • There is no doubt that the UNSC has the authority and jurisdiction to make a legally binding finding for the "crime of aggression"?
  • There is no doubt that the UNSC did not make this finding, the eqiuvalent of any court dismissing a petition for obvious lack of legal merit?
  • The only judicial authority in the world with jurisdiction has determined not to make any finding in regard to this invasion.
Which of these three claims do you dispute? Can you cite any reference that dispute these? If so, then the legal question may be unsettled. If not, it is now settled. Raggz 21:57, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
I would strongly prefer to have these discussions in the context of making changes to the article, as opposed to more abstractly. But I will quickly respond here for the sake of establishing the basis on which our article edits will be made. I agree that the UNSC has the authority to determine a crime of aggression. To my knowledge, the UNSC has never in its history labeled a war a crime of aggression (please correct me if I am wrong). Assuming we think that some wars in the past 25 years have, in fact, fit the definition of a crime of aggression, the fact that the UN has not labeled them as such does not seem to be the definitive statement on whether or not they were crimes of aggression. That is in general, as well as in the case of Iraq.
This should be our focus - and any findings or lack of action (which amount to a finding). The point that relates to our editing is what court(s) have jurisdiction over the crime of aggression, as it relates to Iraq. This subject when debated will yield a key fact. We could debate if the UN is a court, it clearly is the Supreme Court of the UN in that it interprets the UN Charter (constitution), does this make it a "court", maybe, does it matter? I suggest "supreme judicial authority" for the UNSC's judicial authorities rather than court? If you prefer another phrase, fine. The UN differs from democratic governments (it is not a democracy) in that all power is unified in the UNSC, there are no "checks and balances" and there are no separate branches of government. The UNSC is the executive, legislative, and judicial branch. It acts as all three. I strongly believe that people who believe that the war in Iraw was illegal deserve to know that the UNSC failed them - and that there is no appeal, it has been settle for years now. If this is not true, only then we should correct this?
Second, I think the comparison between the UN and a court of law is highly problematic. Courts (at least in the western democratic systems) are meant to be politically isolated interpreters of statute. The UNSC is a highly politicized body within which each member has a veto (not so in a court). So I don't think it is a particularly useful comparison. To look at it another way, courts in the United States in the late 1800s and pre-civil rights 1900s rarely if ever found white people guilty of crimes against black people. It would not be accurate, however, to assume that no white people committed crimes against black people in that time period.
The UN is not intended to be a "legal court", but in my opinion it is intended to be political court that makes political decisions. The UN is not a liberal democracy much less a democracy, and does not have democratic institutions. The concept of what a liberal democracy was in 1800 included slavery. It and universal sufferage have since evolved and the US in 1800 would not qualify as a modern liberal democracy. We descend again into what the UN should be, rather than what it is? It has obvious flaws, the ICC is a fledgling attempt to endrun these flaws (that will run directly into UN Article 53 which will preclude this.) Again, we could debate and likely agree that the UNSC is an ineffective means of determining US aggression, but is this relevant to what happened? We then are arguing about what the court should have decided? I say yes, it is MOST relevant - but only in the accurate context of the debate on what future public policy should be.
The definition of crimes of aggression and the role of the UNSC and ICC are highly debated subjects. I can cite a number of articles that raise serious questions about your somewhat simplistic formulation of the issue (see here and here). At the least, I think those citations make the point that the issue is not settled by any stretch of the imagination. I hope we might at the least reach some agreement on that rather limited point. --Mackabean 21:45, 28 May 2007 (UTC)
I welcome any articles that illuminate some point missed on what actually happened at the UNSC. I also welcome any articles that illuminate some point missed on what should have happened at the UNSC, as long as they are contextually placed accurately into the debate on future publicy policy rather than challenging what in fact happened. What should have happened is now only part of what will happen next time? I will of course withdraw any claims that you dispute and support. I will ask, what court or judicial authority with jurisdiction has unresolved issues - and what are those issues. Once you answer these questions, no problem, we change the article? Simplicity in an encyclopedia is an desirable objective, the question is it simple and accurate? Raggz 22:31, 28 May 2007 (UTC)

Country positions: Turkey[edit]

Image:Country_positions_Iraq_war.png shows Turkey as one of those that participated in the initial invasion. I cannot find any sources or references for these claims. Please point me to the right citations, otherwise I will nominate the image to be changed to remove Turkey. Javit 22:34, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

I understood they didn't. The Turkish parliament voted against at the last minute, blocking involvement, and denying US permission to invade via Turkey. AndrewRT(Talk) 00:11, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Reversion, dispute, protection[edit]

I also have major concerns about the development of this article since [5]. Entire sections have been deleted based on arguments which have been contested on the talk pages. I have tried to explain the issues but I end up suspecting that the editor is either unable or unwilling to understand the issues.

What issues? Where are they articulated? Raggz 20:11, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Lets go back to where we started. Although some of the changes are well argued - and the article could certainly be improved - most of these are major changes which frankly have little support. Please argue them here first and then if they have consensus lets make the change. AndrewRT(Talk) 00:21, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

  • I'm fine with this, I am committed to this, so let's do it. Raggz 20:11, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Andrew, WP is not a democracy. Reverting to innacuracies will not work, but making supported relevant arguments will. There was no consensus for you to make massive changes to support your POV. You may not delete well supported claims, especially without discussion or consensus. Read above, why start over?Raggz 08:41, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
WP:Not#Democracy "“Wikipedia is not a democracy“. Wikipedia is not an experiment in democracy or any other political system. Its primary method of determining consensus is discussion, not voting. Although editors occasionally use straw polls in an attempt to test for consensus, polls or surveys may actually impede rather than assist discussion. They should be used with caution, if at all, and may not be treated as binding."
If you read above, we have consensus that the legality of the war is a long-settled issue. The UN Charter gives the UNSC authority (under Article 39) to make findings for the crime of aggresion - or not to make such a finding. The decision of the UNSC to not make this finding then totally settled the legal issue. There are no open legal issues before any court, no open legal issues? Name what these are, or agree that we have reached consensus.
The issue of public opinion is certainly unsettled. Here we have no consensus. Read Wikipedia:Guidelines for controversial articles. It is an important first step to settle if the war was or was not legal. We have consensus, it was legal. What we next need to address is if it should have been legal. Raggz 09:27, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Your statement that “we have consensus that the legality of the war is a long-settled issue” is utter nonsense, and perfectly illustrates AndrewRT's point that you are “either unable or unwilling to understand the issues”. You are the only person here who believes that the legality of the war is a long-settled issue. To claim that “we have a consensus” suggests that either you are trolling or you don't understand the word consensus.
If there was disagreement, someone would post the remaining or open legal issue. The UNSC has made it's decision, do you dispute this? What court might act - on what law? All you need do to deny consensus here is to explain WHY the legal case was not settled when the UNSC decided not to sustain your POV. We will not attain a POV consensus, we are dealing with a pov on the facts. There is a consensus, because there is no debate here about facts. You may not revert as an alternative to discussion and attempting to reach consensus. Raggz 17:28, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Note that “Wikipedia is not a democracy” doesn't mean you can ignore what everyone else here thinks. If you continue to ignore everyone else's objections, your edits will continue to be reverted. Therefore, if you are serious about editing this article, it is in your interest to discuss your changes here first and convince other editors that you are correct; otherwise, your edits will simply be reverted again.
I certainly do not ignore anyone's views, I have been flexible, listened carefully, and changed my positions often to accomodate and work toward concensus. This is not here about pov - we have simple facts to include. The UNSC is the sole judicial authority in regard to the crime of aggresion, a simple fact. It has made it's decision years ago, another fact. The legality of the war was settled years ago, a most relevant fact. The facts bother you, you cannot debate these points, so you silently revert. I suggest following WP policy for controversial topics, what do you think is non-controversial - if not the settled law on this invasion? Two people who will not debate, but silently revert, who will not work toward a consensus cannot be worked with. I cannot make you do any of these, just ask that you reconsider trying these strategies instead. Raggz 17:37, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm restoring what AndrewRT calls “last version that had consensus” because I have no doubt that the vast majority of editors support this move. Sideshow Bob Roberts 14:54, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Please review the WP definition of consensus, and explain why silent reversions by you and one or two others represents a WP consensus. I dispute your claim of consensus. Raggz 20:08, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Raggz, you are the only one who has voiced disagreement with this consensus and have failed to provide evidence in the form a reliable source. Reread WP:CON and back up your disagreement with facts. Simply saying "The UN Charter gives the UNSC authority (under Article 39) to make findings for the crime of aggresion - or not to make such a finding. The decision of the UNSC to not make this finding then totally settled the legal issue" is incorrect. While the UNSC has the power to make the findings, just because they didn't make any finding, does not mean the UNSC has "totally settled the legal issue;" especially since Kofi Annan said "[the Invasion of Iraq] was not in conformity with the UN charter from our point of view, from the charter point of view, it was illegal." Try backing up your information with reliable references instead of your unsupported claims. —Christopher Mann McKayuser talk 19:02, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Editorial Vison - Creating a better article[edit]

Incoherence and lack of organization[edit]

The problem is that the article is not useful to the Reader. I'm offering a vision on how to improve it. Right now it is tagged heavily in is disorganized and is somewhat incoherent. May we be united to improve it? May we agree to disagree on our POVs, and still work to get the article into at least a minimally useful state? Do we need to accept my vision? No, certainly not, we need a shared vision. So read Wikipedia:Guidelines for controversial articles, and articulate your personal vision and committment to working together here. I have articulated my vision (above), now it is time for the "vast majority" to do so, or to accept consensus. Raggz 19:48, 3 June 2007 (UTC)


Democracy and Consensus[edit]

Review WP:NOT#Democracy. Three votes to one does not authorize the majority to disregard the actual facts of value to the reader. Not everything in life at WP is determined by POV votes. There is a policy against reverting actual facts supported by reliable sources to maintain one's personal pov. If something is claimed to be fact, and disproven, THEN it should be removed and not before. I have been wrong before, corrected, and have withdrawn claims when I was mistaken. Just correct my errors, and don't silently revert them. Raggz 19:48, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Consensus of One[edit]

A consensus of one may be legitimately established when many elect to silently accept a claim. A reversion without discussion leaves a consensus of one intact. Consensus is attained through discussion, not by silent reversion. Presently I claim a consensus of one. Raggz 20:05, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

"Consensus does not mean that everyone agrees with the outcome; instead, it means that everyone agrees to abide by the outcome." I do not agree that there is another side as to what the UNSC Council has decided as to the legality of the 2003 invasion. No opposing claim has been made. Unless another claim is made, may we now agree as to a consensus on this? Silence is agreement. Raggz 19:48, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Settled Issues and Unsettled Issues.[edit]

Wikipedia:Guidelines for controversial articles suggests that we sort out what we agree on first. What do we agree upon? Raggz 19:48, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Settled Issues[edit]

Unsettled Issues[edit]

(After we settle something we can move it to the section just prior.)

Sideshow Bob says: "I agree with Mackabean. As it now stands, the legal section of the article is based on unsupported claims and stupid misunderstandings. The suggestion that the invasion must have been legal because neither the Security Council nor the ICC has taken action is patent nonsense. The Security Council will not act because both the United States and the United Kingdom have the power to veto any resolution. The ICC is only empowered to prosecute war crimes, crimes against humanity and the crime of genocide, so it is completely irrelevant to the question of whether the invasion was legal. Sideshow Bob Roberts 21:09, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

  • Please articulate what these "unsupported claims and stupid misunderstandings" are. I cannot really respond without specifics. Raggz 21:03, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
  • WHY the Security Council will not act is irrelevant to the topic? This is equivalent to a court dismissing a claim without comment, for lack of legal merit? The Security Council is certainly a political and a judicial institution, and the decision is undeniably at least in part political. I suggest the preceeding are settled issues that we neen not debate further? Do we have consensus? Raggz 21:03, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
  • What you need to do is to find a "reliable source" that says that the Security Council (1) didn't ignore the invasion or alternatively (2) there is some reason to not consider the legality of the invasion to be settled. If you do not do this, or raise some other relevant issue, then we have consensus? I understand that you disagree with the court and also (correctly) view the decision to have been political. Your POV is irrelavant without a reliable source, is OR?Raggz 21:03, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
  • We need a strong section that WILL address your concerns and POV that the invasion was illegitimate. I agree, we have consensus that we need to ALSO cover these legitimate concerns. Our FIRST step is to settle the mere legality, which only the UNSC has jurisdiction to decide and did decide. Do we have consensus that we need BOTH a legitimacy and a legality section? They are related, but are not the same thing? Raggz 21:10, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
  • As for the ICC, sure I will compromise on that, edit it if you wish. You are correct that it is irrelevant, but I put it in because as an encyclopedia we should add things of relevance that the reader may not know. We have consensus on this issue, unless someone else has an issue. Raggz 21:03, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Legality of the War[edit]

Christopher reverted this section: "A dispute exists over the legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq'. The debate centers around the question whether the invasion was an unprovoked assault on an independent country that may have breached international law -- or whether the conditions set in place after the Gulf War allowed the resumption if Iraq did not uphold to the Security Council resolutions. [6] Those arguing for its legality often cite Congressional Joint Resolution 114 and previous UN Security Council resolutions, as well as Resolution 1441, stating these documents allow for military action. This statement is (1) OR and (2) is partially inaccurate. (3) The legality of the war is a settled issue (by the UNSC). Some UNSC resolutions did not authorize military action, the 1990 one did. The UNSC tacitly accepted that the invasion was authorized and legal. This was of course a largely or entirely a political decision - but this factor is a not a legal issue, but is still a legitimacy issue. We can discuss the legitimacy of the process, and should discuss this. We should be careful not to say legal if we mean legitimate. The Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion is FAR from settled. The legal issue is long since settled. Raggz 04:29, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Those arguing against its legality also cite much the same sources, stating they do not actually permit war but instead lay out conditions that must be met before war can be declared. Critics often cite the Downing Street memo as further proof the war was waged under misleading terms. The terms of the debate change depending on the subject of domestic or international law." This paragraph is all OR and is ineligible for inclusion. Raggz 04:29, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Fake U.N. Plot, etc. Under Weapons of Mass Destruction Section[edit]

I am new to Wikipedia and thus not very aware of proper protocol. In any case, I wanted to point of a few inaccuracies and biases under the section on Weapons of Mass Destruction.

"British officials in the memo also discuss a proposal by President Bush to provoke Iraq, including using fake UN planes, to manufacture a pretext for the invasion he had already decided on."

1) This information was not from the Downing Street memo, but was rather contained in the book Lawless World by Phillip Sands.

2) The evidence of such a fake UN plane plot is very weak if one relies only on quotes from the memo made available to the media. As far as I can tell the underpinnings of this "plot" primarily hinge on the imagination of Mr. Sands and the repetition of the story in the news media.

3) It is known that during the time period that this meeting took place (from which the "Sands" memo derives) there were requests from the UN to the Iraqi government to allow overflight of U.S. piloted U2 spy planes as part of the weapons inspection process (see Sydney Morning Herald, Jan. 21, 2003 [7].) Surprisingly this very relevant fact got very little attention during the time that Mr. Sands' book and allegations were being reported in the news.

4) Since the UN does not possess or use U2 spy planes it seems extraordinarily unlikely that such a subterfuge would be successful since the plane (or its debris after having been shot down) would easily be recognized as a U.S. aircraft in spite of a new paint job. Much easier and realistic schemes could be devised which would achieve the alleged desired end, e.g. shoot down an actual UN aircraft using a weapon in the Iraqi arsenal and blame it on the Iraqis. Just from these two points, its seems that such a fake UN plane plot borders on the absurd.

In summary, there was no mention of "fake" planes in the "Sands" memo. There was a discussion of flying U2 planes under UN colors but this is actually consistent with the fact that the UN had requested that the Iraqi government allow overflights of U2 spy planes flying under UN colors (see SMH article above) during that time. At the most, we might be able to say that President Bush was hoping that such an altercation would take place (i.e. that Iraq would shoot down a U2 spy plane flying under UN colors while operating as part of the weapons inspection process) but even this appears to be an extrapolation from the facts available. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 76.221.135.126 (talkcontribs) 01:33, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Welcome to Wikipedia! If you need help just ask. Feel free to edit the article, just expect a lot of editing on your work, if you don't source carefully. Raggz 04:09, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Thanks Raggz. I did try to edit the article a few days ago but someone reverted it to an earlier version saying that I needed to get consensus on the talk page before making the changes. I'm not sure how this is done or whether or not its really necessary. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 76.221.135.126 (talkcontribs) 06:36, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

The Security Council has “settled” the issue[edit]

Raggz, this is another straightforward case of you trying to insert stupid original research into an article and accusing anyone who disagrees with you of pushing a POV.

As I understand it, your theory is as follows: The United Nations Security Council, while not strictly a court of law, is similar to one. It is the UN's “supreme judicial authority”: the only body with the authority to rule on whether the invasion of Iraq was legal. The Security Council considered the invasion of Iraq and decided not to rule that it was illegal. This is equivalent to a court of law dismissing a claim for “obvious lack of legal merit”. As such, the question of whether the invasion was legal is settled, unless someone can provide evidence of another official investigation.

You will not find a single reliable published source who agrees with this theory. Your theory is, quite frankly, moronic. Each link in your chain of logic is a misunderstanding that a freshman student of international law would be ashamed of.

You constantly demand that other editors provide evidence that your theory is wrong, but this is not how Wikipedia works. The burden of evidence rests with the person making the claim. In this case, the burden is on you to find a source that explicitly agrees with your theory. If there were even a shred of truth to your theory this should be an easy task, since thousands of reliable published sources have analysed the legality of the invasion. However, since your theory is nuts, you will not find a reliable source that agrees with you.

It is perfectly clear to everyone here that you haven't the slightest clue about international law. That, in itself, should not be a problem: Wikipedia actively welcomes non-specialist editors. The problem is that you stubbornly refuse to listen to other editors, even when it is clear that you are out of your depth. You cling to crazy theories (that Clinton lacked full powers to sign the Rome Statute, that UN troops have been accused of crimes within the jurisdiction of the ICC, that the question of whether that invasion of Iraq was legal has been definitively settled by the UN Security Council) even when everyone else says you're wrong and you can't find a single source to support your claims. Instead of looking for evidence to support your claims, you demand that other editors provide evidence that you are wrong and you refuse to listen when we try to explain why you are wrong. It took me several days to bring you to understand that there was a difference between signature and ratification — a point that should be obvious to anyone with even a beginner's knowledge of international law. Most of us who contribute to these articles have busy lives, and we have better things to do than repeatedly explain the basics of international law to someone who refuses to understand.

You pretend you want to work with other editors but the reality is that you are attempting to silence a legitimate debate about whether the invasion was illegal by inventing your own theory and claiming the debate has been settled. You're very quick to accuse other editors of pushing a particular POV, but it is clear from your edits to this and other articles that your only aim is to remove any material you perceive to be critical of the United States. I can honestly say that I don't have any agenda. I have never tried to remove any argument that the invasion was legal (from this or any other article). I simply object to the kind of rubbish you keep trying to insert. You accuse us of trying to hide “actual facts” from the reader, but these things you call facts are purely the product of your imagination. If they were actual facts, you should be able to find a source that mentions them.

I will not continue to engage with your silly claim that the Security Council has definitively settled the question of whether the invasion was legal. Unless you find a reliable published source who agrees with you, this conversation is over and any attempt to restore this nonsense to the article will be reverted immediately. Sideshow Bob Roberts 16:23, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

I agree with Sideshow Bob Roberts. Raggz, your edits to this article and to others have been, in general, unconstructive and in violation of NPOV. —Christopher Mann McKayuser talk 18:43, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
  • Christopher - I understand this is how you feel. Still, evidence would be useful? If seven members of the Flat Earth Society vote to state the "Earth is actually flat", would this be a problem? Should the eighth wikipedian agree, is this conensus? My objections are based upon facts from reliable authorities such as the UN Charter. Please offer your reliable source? Raggz 05:12, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
I suggest you listen to your own advice and back up your claims with a reliable source, as your claims have no supporting evidence. Your quote from the UN Charter does not state what you are claiming. Find a different source, if you can find one. —Christopher Mann McKayuser talk 07:30, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
  • Sideshow Bob, you have already agreed that the UNSC is ignoring the invasion and also that Article 39 authorizes it to find for agression. Calling the UN Charter "nonsense" will not work, and you don't get to delete anything you may consider nonsense - if it comes from reliable sources. You have to state that the UN Charter is not a reliable source. Actually you should reconsider your plan to stop working toward consensus, or even talking. Am I correct that you will now start a revert war? Why not just offer your evidence? Do you retract your earlier statements on the UN, or not? Raggz 05:12, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Please stop mischaracterising my comments.
I have never suggested that the UN Charter is "nonsense". Your interpretation of the Charter is, however, complete nonsense.
Nor have I suggested that the UN Charter is "not a reliable source". It is, however, a "primary source". Wikipedia's official policy on primary sources is clear: we may not offer our own interpretations or draw any conclusions from them.
“Any interpretation of primary source material requires a secondary source.”
“An article or section of an article that relies on a primary source should (1) only make descriptive claims, the accuracy of which is easily verifiable by any reasonable, educated person without specialist knowledge, and (2) make no analytic, synthetic, interpretive, explanatory, or evaluative claims. Contributors drawing on entirely primary sources should be careful to comply with both conditions..”
You are free to quote the UN Charter and Resolutions wherever appropriate, but you may not add conclusions like "this appears to settle the question of whether the invasion was illegal" unless you can quote a secondary source that explicitly agrees with your claim.
Your interpretation of the UN Charter is not supported by any secondary sources. It is original research. It is also, as I said, nuts. You have yet to quote a single source that agrees with your theory.
I do not “plan to stop working toward consensus”. We have already reached a consensus that your theory is wrong. You are the only person who persists in believing this rubbish.
All I said was that I will not discuss this any further unless you can cite a reliable published source that explicitly agrees with you. As you refuse to do this, the conversation is a complete waste of everyone else's time. Sideshow Bob Roberts 15:43, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

"Nor have I suggested that the UN Charter is "not a reliable source". It is, however, a "primary source". Wikipedia's official policy on primary sources is clear: we may not offer our own interpretations or draw any conclusions from them." Sideshow Bob Roberts 15:43, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Article 39 of the United Nations Charter was cited directly, not paraphrased. You deleted this actual text, why? Why not just the part you objected to? NOW you articulated your issue in enough detail for me to understand it, and I agree that the UN Charter is a primary reference and is covered by the policy you cite. I recall that there are exceptions to that policy, but I cannot cite them from memory. Raggz 02:05, 7 June 2007 (UTC)

The massive update (again)[edit]

Raggz, please stop reverting your massive change to the structure of the article. It is clear that you are the only person here who supports this change.

You have bizarrely relegated the opinions of the UK Attorney General, the Law Lords, the German Federal Administrative Court, etc., to a section called “The court of public opinion” (together with material like opinion polls and Christian opposition to the war). These are not “public opinion”. The decisions by the Law Lords and the German Federal Administrative Court are actual legal rulings — unlike any decision (real or imagined) by the United Nations Security Council not to consider the invasion an act of aggression.

It is clear that nobody here is happy with the present structure of the article, and there appears to be a consensus that the question of the legality of the war should be dealt with in a separate article from the issue of political support for and opposition to the war. Mackabean is doing an excellent job of dealing with this. In the meantime, your massive update only serves to further confuse the issues of legality and public support, making the article even more difficult to follow. Sideshow Bob Roberts 16:40, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Your theory is that the legality of the war is so unrelated to the legitimacy of the war that they need be seperated? No, I disagree. You don't understand the linkage?
The legal cases, as I recall, were not about the legality of the war, but were about domestic issues where the legality of the war came in. I suppose we could rework the legality section adding a section on Legalities in Europe, or what you think best. I would prefer to keep it short, like case ____ declared the ar in Iraq ilegal in the UK, or in Germany, or wherever. If it need be longer, I could live with that too. So of course I will comromise, you make an excellent point. If no one else objects, we have consensus.
You again refuse to discuss the only international court with jurisdiction over aggresion, except to say "unlike any decision (real or imagined) by the United Nations Security Council not to consider the invasion an act of aggression." You are on the record stating that the UNSC knew about the decision and that it ignored it. So why now suggest that I imagined this refusal?
The article still deals inaccurately with "legalities". This is an encyclopedia, the basic facts are not up for a vote. There is no continuing legal case in regard to the 2003 invasion, all decisions were made years ago, we should report what happened, even if you don't agree with history. There is only limted consensus here. I do not understand why we should split, the legality of the war only requires one paragraph, and is too tightly linked to seperate.
I'm fine with changing the outline, edit away. Just don't change the facts. We have consensus (I believe) that there should be room to challenge the legitimacy of the 2003 invasion. There should be room to discuss why the UNSC failed to rule, why it dismissed the case. There are strong ongoing challenges to the legitimacy, just not challenges to the legality. We have a (silent) consensus that all legal proceedings are now completed. I actually do prefer that the article fairly and efectively outline the challenges to the legtimacy of the invasion. So I will revert, there was no consensus. Stay within the facts and you will find that I will work with you. Prove that I am mistaken on the facts, and again I will yield. Edit the parts about the legitimacy issues, just not the legalities. Raggz 03:31, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Revert War[edit]

Please remember WP:3RR and try to move this discussion beyond a crude revert war towards a consensus. AndrewRT(Talk) 23:38, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Then the recommended proceedure is to first work on the parts with consensus? Where do we agree? Raggz 03:33, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

“The international conspiracy theory”[edit]

I note that the allegation that the intelligence on WMDs was misrepresented is now referred to as “the international conspiracy theory”.

As I'm sure you're all aware, “conspiracy theory” is a pejorative term which is almost invariably used to dismiss claims as misconceived, paranoid, unfounded, outlandish, irrational, or otherwise unworthy of serious consideration.

It is, of course, strictly true that those who believe the intelligence was misrepresented generally believe in the existence of a high-level conspiracy. However, it is equally true that the Bush administration alleged that Iraqi scientists and officials were engaged in a conspiracy to develop weapons of mass destruction and to conceal this from the international community, yet no-one has seen fit to label Bush, Blair, etc., as conspiracy theorists.

I'm removing this loaded term from the article. If anyone wants to restore it, please be sure to apply it to all those who believe in conspiracies, not just people you disagree with. Sideshow Bob Roberts 14:16, 6 June 2007 (UTC)

I don't think this should be compared to the theory that Bush and Blair lied about Saddam having WMD's because that claim is far more incredible whereas the first was simply a matter of bad intelligence. The term "conspiracy theory" is often more accurate after it is still believed despite being debunked. The Silbermann-Robb and Butler reports debunked the idea several years ago although many currently still hold this view. User:jfraatz

Fine, choose another phrase that suits your POV. That is why we talk here, to sort these things out. The issue is what to catagorize the theories involving a large international conspiracy to invade Iraq? Please select a better phrase, the article needs a category that works like the phrase conspiracy theory managed to communicate. If none is selected, conspiracy theory will be edited back in. Raggz 01:47, 7 June 2007 (UTC)
Just because the 9/11 Commission couldn't find subtle virtually unfalsifiable evidence of politicization doesn't mean the burden of proof is on them. The kind of politicization needed to rig that much evidence would be more likely noticeable than not. Ockham's razor suggests that the simplest explanation is probably the best. Since it is more improbable to suggest that intel was manipulated to the kind of the degree necessary, than not the burden of proof lies on the claim that more elaborate means to manipulate the intelligence were used than what the Commission was looking for. User:Spoisp —Preceding unsigned comment added by 174.102.148.158 (talk) 00:38, 14 September 2009 (UTC)

Legitimacy vs. Legality[edit]

I have suggested that a new article be created dealing solely with the legality rather than the legitimacy of the invasion. What is the difference?

"Legality of the invasion" is about the question was the invasion legal or not under international law. More specifically, was it a breach of the UN Charter or was it allowed as an act of self-defense, authorised by a previous resolution etc. etc.

Questions of legitimacy are far broader and deal with ethics/morals rather than laws. Plenty of people argue something can be illegal but still legitimate (for instance [8]) Likewise, something can be legal but illegitimate, for instance if people were encourged to support by telling lies.

Does that make sense? AndrewRT(Talk) 23:26, 7 June 2007 (UTC)

Makes sense to me. I'm in favor of creating two seperate articles. —Christopher Mann McKayuser talk 23:42, 7 June 2007 (UTC)
I thought we had a consensus in favour of your proposed split two weeks ago. Mackabean has already created an article called Legality of the Iraq war. Unless someone objects, I think we can delete most of the legality stuff from the "legitimacy" article now.
Can I also suggest that we split off the section called “Countries supporting and opposing the invasion”? It's related to the question of legitimacy, but only very indirectly. I don't think a reader who comes to an article called “Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq” would expect to find this stuff, and I doubt a reader looking for information about which countries supported and opposed the invasion would come to this article. Sideshow Bob Roberts 02:13, 8 June 2007 (UTC)
I am still in favor of splitting off the legality questions. I started the article as mentioned above, but have been swamped as of late and haven't been able to do much on it. I would certainly appreciate help in fleshing out that article, especially with some of the background about international law. Maybe someone who knows a lot about that stuff could help out? --Mackabean 23:34, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
I deleted the sections in this article to fix WP:CFORK. That way, people won't edit those sections here, and Legality of the Iraq War will be updated. Isaac Pankonin 01:17, 7 September 2007 (UTC)
Andrew's idea is insightful. There should be a forum to debate what SHOULD be legal. What IS legal was settled in 2003, and the political structure of the UNSC precludes any further review. There should be a debate about what is correct, ethical, and smart - not what is legal. What law will BECOME is very different from what it presently IS. I have no real issue with claims about legitimacy - just with false claims that there are unsettled legal issues. I am willing to help remove the extranaeous material. Raggz 22:24, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

German BND Intel[edit]

Here are a few articles from 2001 and 2003 which indicate that the German intelligence agency (BND) had serious concerns regarding increasing activity with regards to Iraq's biological and chemical weapons program, and also the resumption of its nuclear weapons program: [9], [10] and [11]. In particular the articles state that the German intelligence assessment concludes:

  • Iraq has resumed its nuclear program and may be capable of producing an atomic bomb in three years;
  • Iraq is developing its Al Samoud and Ababil 100/Al Fatah short-range rockets, which can deliver a 300kg payload 150km. Medium-range rockets capable of carrying a warhead 3,000km could be built by 2005 - far enough to reach Europe;
  • Iraq is capable of manufacturing solid rocket fuel;
  • A Delhi-based company, blacklisted by the German government because of its alleged role in weapons proliferation, has acted as a buyer on Iraq's behalf. Deliveries have been made via Malaysia and Dubai. Indian companies have copied German machine tools down to the smallest detail and such equipment has been installed in numerous chemicals projects. [Note that such Indian cooperation with Iraq is something of a tradition: during the Iran-Iraq war India delivered precursors for warfare agents to Iraq - and later was found to have delivered quantities of the same materials to Iran. Baghdad's middleman at the time, an Iraqi with a German passport, founded a company in Singapore expressly for this purpose.]
  • Since the departure of the UN inspectors, the number of Iraqi sites involved in chemicals production has increased from 20 to 80. Of that total, a quarter could be involved in weapons production.

Also, regarding the BND intelligence assessment, Friedbert Pflueger, a member of the German parliament, stated "If we trust our [intelligence] services, and I do, then we know that there exist weapons of mass destruction in Iraq." He goes on to say that the classified BND report should be made public "so that Herr Schroeder cannot continue to spread the impression that the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq is a figment of George W Bush's imagination".

Isaac Pankonin 07:39, 12 August 2007 (UTC)

The Opening[edit]

Our article says "the debate centers around the question whether the invasion was an unprovoked assault on an independent country that may have breached international law". This is misleading because UN resolution 1441 firmly denies the "unprovoked assault" claim. 1441 documents the many violations of international law by Iraq. Iraq was a defeated nation and was not "an independent country", in the full sense of this phrase. It was subject to the supervision of the UN Security Council for many matters and lacked full sovereignty.

If someone wants to revise this to make it accurate, please do so. Please explain why it was "unprovoked" in light of 1441, what is meant by "independent", and what is meants by "may have breached international law". Consider that the UNSC is the sole legal tribunal - and that it rejected the illegality claim in 2003.

In one sense I have no problem with airing the main complaints and outrage by many - as long as there are no distortions of fact. Is there someone who can revise the opening to reflect the actual issues people have with LEGITIMACY without making misleading claims? I'm not up to that job, and would just delete what is there.

This article needs a good opening, one that effectively summarizes the widespread concerns and even rage over LEGITIMACY. Raggz 23:10, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

US Chemical Weapons Source[edit]

We have a problem, the citation supporting "Others claim, also, that this contradicts previous U.S. policy, since the US was one of many nations that supplied chemical weapon precursors, even when well aware of what it was being used for. [31]" says no such thing. I will delete this, but feel free to add it back when properly supported. Raggz 06:17, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

MERGE LEGALITY AND LEGITIMACY BACK TOGETHER[edit]

The idea that there would be a seperate article on the Legitimacy - and the Legality, has proven impractical. There are in fact, unified in practice, if not in concept. The editors who insist upon this are correct. 05:48, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

Merge, I agree. There are too many articles about Iraq, and the size of this article is not big enough to merit splitting it off. I think the word "Legitimacy" was chosen when this article began as a way to encompass both legal and non-legal arguments. Isaac Pankonin 09:08, 26 September 2007 (UTC)
Definitely not. Whatever problems there are with the "Legitimacy" stuff will not be solved by merging it back into the "Legality" article.
The Legality of the Iraq War is a distinct question, which needs to be dealt with in detail, separately from the other issues surrounding the invasion. It has the potential to become a useful, authoritative resource for the reader, if we can ever just remove all the unsourced rubbish. It definitely should not be merged with any other articles.
Maybe the legitimacy stuff can be dealt with somewhere else but it does not belong with the legality stuff. Sideshow Bob Roberts 03:01, 1 October 2007 (UTC)

Debunking conspiracy theories[edit]

The article currently states:

Despite this and other conspiratorial claims of governmental pre-knowledge of Saddam's lack of WMD, the Silberman-Robb report confirmed the Butler Report debunking claims that the public was in some way deceived into agreeing to the Iraq war, finding that:
The Commission found no evidence of political pressure to influence the Intelligence Community's pre-war assessments of Iraq's weapons programs. As we discuss in detail in the body of our report, analysts universally asserted that in no instance did political pressure cause them to skew or alter any of their analytical judgments.[21]

This falsehood has been repeatedly inserted into the article by editors advancing a particular POV. The Silbermann-Robb commission did not "debunk claims that the public was in some way deceived into agreeing to the Iraq war". Not only does our source not make this claim, but it actually contradicts it. (Our source specifically states that "neither the Senate Intelligence Committee nor the Silberman-Robb commission considered how Bush and his top aides used the intelligence that was given to them, or whether they misled the public.")

Also, it's brazen original research to refer to the WMD allegations as "conspiratorial claims". (User:Jfraatz says this is just calling a spade a spade [12] but we can't do that here at Wikipedia unless we can cite a reliable, published source who agrees with us.)

If you can't find a reliable source who refers to a theory as "conspiratorial", you have no business using that word in the article. And if you can't find a reliable source who says the Silberman-Robb commission "debunked claims that the public was in some way deceived into agreeing to the Iraq war", please stop adding this rubbish to the article. Sideshow Bob Roberts 03:09, 1 October 2007 (UTC)


NEW LINK

I added the link below, which i believe offers some important arguments in the debate.


Wouldn't it by definition be a conspiracy theory to say things that are confirmed by offical government reports are intentionally wrong or misleading? As such would not "conspiratorial" be a perfectly accurate description? jfraatz

Funny, then, how you never refer to Bush's WMD claims about Iraq as a "conspiracy theory", though it is by definition a conspiracy theory to suggest that Iraqi officials were conspiring to hide WMDs. Perhaps this is because you know that "conspiracy theory" is loaded term that suggests that a theory is "misconceived, paranoid, unfounded, outlandish, irrational, or otherwise unworthy of serious consideration". It's a blatant violation of WP:NPOV to apply loaded terms like that to people you disagree with.
I notice that you have once again restored your false claim that "the Silberman-Robb report confirmed the findings of the Butler report debunking conspiratorial claims that the public was deceived into agreeing to the Iraq war"[13] even though, as I noted above, the source you cite says precisely the opposite. According to your source, "neither the Senate Intelligence Committee nor the Silberman-Robb commission considered how Bush and his top aides used the intelligence that was given to them, or whether they misled the public". Please stop reverting this blatant lie. Sideshow Bob Roberts (talk) 04:49, 28 March 2008 (UTC)
The quoted text above doesn't make sense: the quote from the report does not support the assertion made by the sentence refering to it. And it's a known fact that the investigation didn't even examine that aspect. (besides, the bush administration didn't get it's intelligence from traditional CIA channels - they got it from a special office they set up in the pentagon called the Office of Special Plans, and from John Bolton at the state department, who transferred info directly from the Iraqi National Congress and "Curveball" (who the cia told them was not a credible source). - so whether or not they pressured the cia is irrelevant as that's not where they got their info from.) Kevin Baastalk 15:26, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Section I[edit]

"While in power, Saddam Hussein showed complete disregard for peace and security in the region."

What about the history before 1980? He was in power a lot longer than that, and revolutionized Iraq as the center of the Islamic world for development and had the best healthcare system in the middle east. You can't just leave that out; This statement is a very single-minded view. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 192.190.75.20 (talk) 16:18, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

Proposed merge with Legality of the Iraq War[edit]

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section. A summary of the conclusions reached follows.
Consensus for a merger may have existed in 2010/2011 when this was proposed. However, after 2.5 years, no action was ever taken to merge. The current state of both articles means that a merger of the two would be complicated and untrivial, and would probably get reverted at some point anyway due to the controversial nature of the Iraq War. In lieu of merging, I have added the text of the lead section from Legality of the Iraq War to this article, since we had a main section with only a link and zero content. That goes against Wikipedia's policies. WTF? (talk) 16:45, 2 June 2013 (UTC)

I noticed that Legality of the Iraq War and this article cover pretty much the same material. Is there any reason not to merge these two pages? AzureFury (talk | contribs) 22:37, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Support The only reason I can find from above is the dubious logic that "Questions of legitimacy are far broader and deal with ethics/morals rather than laws." The result is a hodgepodge of OR and neutrality problems. Merge and use this opportunity to give both articles a good once-over. Bonewah (talk) 15:04, 4 January 2010 (UTC)
Support I think combining both pages into one titled "Justification of..." appropriately condenses discussion of the invasion, streamlining search for information. - Drlight11 (talk) 01:32, 26 March 2011 (UTC)
Do not agree Legality refers to a decision based on a legal statement or document like the UN Charter, whereas legitimacy is a more political standpoint. By merging these two aspects the legality --or rather illegality-- of the 2003 Iraq invasion will be submerged into a political and less clear sphere without way out.--86.52.127.72 (talk) 10:49, 28 March 2011 (UTC)
Support Legality and legitimacy may be two different words but the lede talks only about its legality. The people who pretend to oppose the war are treating it as if it's the same thing. -- Randy2063 (talk) 19:50, 28 March 2011 (UTC)
Support per Bonewah. V7-sport (talk)
Oppose Legality is very different than legitimacy. And the legality page goes into deep detail the legal circumstances behind the invasion. Inks.LWC (talk) 01:35, 18 June 2011 (UTC)
Support A single article can differentiate for the reader between legitimacy and legality. They are closely related concepts and moving them together would illuminate both. — btphelps (talk) (contribs) 19:14, 20 September 2011 (UTC)

The above discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section.

Images in article[edit]

The first two images in this article are both pro-military, and by implication pro-war. Since this article is contesting the legitimacy of a war, pro-war images may violate the NPOV of the article. I have removed the artistic soldier silhouette since it was not specifically related to the Iraq invasion (could have been from any modern war by looking at it), but currently have left the 'victorious US troops' image as I don't have a decent replacement. Anyone have any input on this? I think inviting patriotic emotion (in American WPers) is definitely undermining any neutrality the article might have. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.129.35.16 (talk) 22:21, 1 September 2010 (UTC)

File:Halabja1.jpg Nominated for Deletion[edit]

Image-x-generic.svg An image used in this article, File:Halabja1.jpg, has been nominated for deletion at Wikimedia Commons in the following category: Deletion requests December 2011
What should I do?

Don't panic; a discussion will now take place over on Commons about whether to remove the file. This gives you an opportunity to contest the deletion, although please review Commons guidelines before doing so.

  • If the image is non-free then you may need to upload it to Wikipedia (Commons does not allow fair use)
  • If the image isn't freely licensed and there is no fair use rationale then it cannot be uploaded or used.

This notification is provided by a Bot --CommonsNotificationBot (talk) 14:43, 22 December 2011 (UTC)

Saddam Hussein gave $25,000 to families of suicide bombers[edit]

In an interview Donald Rumsfeld said that Saddam Hussein was giving $25,000 dollars to the families of suicide bombers. This may be the central reason why the bush administration went to war with Iraq. http://thedailyshow.cc.com/videos/j6f55l/donald-rumsfeld-pt--1 — Preceding unsigned comment added by 70.100.44.96 (talk) 22:11, 12 July 2014 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just added archive links to 5 external links on Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Please take a moment to review my edit. If necessary, add {{cbignore}} after the link to keep me from modifying it. Alternatively, you can add {{nobots|deny=InternetArchiveBot}} to keep me off the page altogether. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, please set the checked parameter below to true to let others know.

You may set the |checked=, on this template, to true or failed to let other editors know you reviewed the change. If you find any errors, please use the tools below to fix them or call an editor by setting |needhelp= to your help request.

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

If you are unable to use these tools, you may set |needhelp=<your help request> on this template to request help from an experienced user. Please include details about your problem, to help other editors.

Cheers.—cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 16:22, 14 January 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just added archive links to 3 external links on Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Please take a moment to review my edit. If necessary, add {{cbignore}} after the link to keep me from modifying it. Alternatively, you can add {{nobots|deny=InternetArchiveBot}} to keep me off the page altogether. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, please set the checked parameter below to true to let others know.

You may set the |checked=, on this template, to true or failed to let other editors know you reviewed the change. If you find any errors, please use the tools below to fix them or call an editor by setting |needhelp= to your help request.

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

If you are unable to use these tools, you may set |needhelp=<your help request> on this template to request help from an experienced user. Please include details about your problem, to help other editors.

Cheers.—cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 13:47, 15 February 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just added archive links to one external link on Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Please take a moment to review my edit. If necessary, add {{cbignore}} after the link to keep me from modifying it. Alternatively, you can add {{nobots|deny=InternetArchiveBot}} to keep me off the page altogether. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, please set the checked parameter below to true or failed to let others know (documentation at {{Sourcecheck}}).

You may set the |checked=, on this template, to true or failed to let other editors know you reviewed the change. If you find any errors, please use the tools below to fix them or call an editor by setting |needhelp= to your help request.

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

If you are unable to use these tools, you may set |needhelp=<your help request> on this template to request help from an experienced user. Please include details about your problem, to help other editors.

Cheers.—cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 08:34, 21 March 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just added archive links to one external link on Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Please take a moment to review my edit. If necessary, add {{cbignore}} after the link to keep me from modifying it. Alternatively, you can add {{nobots|deny=InternetArchiveBot}} to keep me off the page altogether. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, please set the checked parameter below to true or failed to let others know (documentation at {{Sourcecheck}}).

You may set the |checked=, on this template, to true or failed to let other editors know you reviewed the change. If you find any errors, please use the tools below to fix them or call an editor by setting |needhelp= to your help request.

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

If you are unable to use these tools, you may set |needhelp=<your help request> on this template to request help from an experienced user. Please include details about your problem, to help other editors.

Cheers.—cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 23:34, 24 March 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified 3 external links on Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, please set the checked parameter below to true or failed to let others know (documentation at {{Sourcecheck}}).

You may set the |checked=, on this template, to true or failed to let other editors know you reviewed the change. If you find any errors, please use the tools below to fix them or call an editor by setting |needhelp= to your help request.

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

If you are unable to use these tools, you may set |needhelp=<your help request> on this template to request help from an experienced user. Please include details about your problem, to help other editors.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 23:42, 1 December 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified 6 external links on Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, you may follow the instructions on the template below to fix any issues with the URLs.

You may set the |checked=, on this template, to true or failed to let other editors know you reviewed the change. If you find any errors, please use the tools below to fix them or call an editor by setting |needhelp= to your help request.

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

If you are unable to use these tools, you may set |needhelp=<your help request> on this template to request help from an experienced user. Please include details about your problem, to help other editors.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 14:46, 13 May 2017 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified 4 external links on Legitimacy of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, you may follow the instructions on the template below to fix any issues with the URLs.

You may set the |checked=, on this template, to true or failed to let other editors know you reviewed the change. If you find any errors, please use the tools below to fix them or call an editor by setting |needhelp= to your help request.

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

If you are unable to use these tools, you may set |needhelp=<your help request> on this template to request help from an experienced user. Please include details about your problem, to help other editors.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 03:55, 18 September 2017 (UTC)