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The real face of the Iraq war: Pain and violence

After all these years one still wonders why Bush attacked Iraq. Was it oil or to gain a toehold in the Middle East?

In a photograph taken minutes later, the wounded Iraqi civilian has collapsed. The Bradley fighting vehicle burns in the background.

A critically wounded Iraqi civilian lies next to a dead civilian on Sept. 12, 2004, in Haifa Street, in Baghdad. After a U.S. Bradley fighting vehicle was attacked and disabled by a car bomb, a crowd of Iraqi civilians gathered around, including three Arab journalists. A U.S. helicopter then fired a missile into the crowd, killing 13 civilians -- including a TV journalist who had just signed off on his report -- and wounding as many as 100. Controversy persists over why the helicopter fired: The U.S. military first claimed it was a routine operation to destroy the vehicle, then that the helicopter had come under small-arms fire. Eyewitnesses disputed that claim.

A U.S. soldier lies dead on the kitchen floor of a house used as a base by insurgent fighters in Fallujah, on Saturday, Nov. 13, 2004. The soldier was shot and killed by insurgent fighters when he entered the room.

Ali Abbas, 6, cries in pain from wounds sustained in fighting between U.S. troops and fighters loyal to radical Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr on Sept. 5, 2004.

An injured Iraqi man asks for help at the scene of a car bomb, on June 14, 2004, in Baghdad.

A mosque employee prepares the body of Lamiamh Ali, 6. Four siblings were playing outside their home in Baghdad when a U.S. cluster bomb exploded. Two of the children died that day and their brother died later as a result of his injuries. Photo taken April 26, 2003

A U.S. Marine next to the dead body of a suspected insurgent during the ground offensive Nov. 9, 2004, in Fallujah, Iraq.


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May 1945 - If hell on earth existed, than it existed in Prague after May the 5th. 1945. Old men, women and children were beaten to death and maimed. Rapes, barbaric cruelties, horror-scenarios of hellish proportions - here they had been let lose.

- Ludek Pachmann, Czech Chess-Grand Master and publicist, forty years after the fact.

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"History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are."

History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again.


HISTORY, n. An account mostly false, of events mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers mostly knaves, and soldiers mostly fools.
-- Ambrose Bierce

We learn from history that we learn nothing from history.


"I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience. I know no way of judging of the future but by the past."

"Patriotism ruins history."

Snippets from History

This short but important battle played a key role in the decision to use atomic bombs when attacking Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The battle showed just how far Japanese troops would go to defend their country.

Snippets From History

Paulus didn't give the order to 6th Army to surrender, but his troops no longer had much fight left in them. Resistance faded out over the next two days, with the last die-hards finally calling it quits. One Red Army colonel shouted at a group of prisoners, waving at the ruins all around them: "That's how Berlin is going to look!


History is Philosophy teaching by examples.


"Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it."
-- George Santayana

Points to Ponder: Why Is China Unstable?

The aim of individuals in any society is money and power. Societies that give equal chance to all its members to get them will be the most stable. That is why democracies are more stable than other systems of governance.

China after Deng's reform gave the chance to get rich but power is in the hands of an elite; the Communist Party of China. Membership to the party is at the whims of the local party bosses. This leaves out many people who crave political power dissatisfied and disgruntled. There in lies the roots of instability. The Party suppressed these demands once at Tiananmen in 1989. But force is hardly the way to deal with things like these.

READ MORE: Tiananmen Square Massacre