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Thursday, August 11, 2011 | Volume: 11220

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'U.S. sought to set up sham state in Iraq'

TEHRAN (Press TV) -- Peace activist and Iraq war veteran Michael Prysner speaks to tens of thousands at a “Let Gaza Live” mass protest.

An American war veteran in the U.S. warfare in Iraq says the United States initiated the hostilities as a pretext to establish its dominion over the country.

Speaking in a recent interview with Press TV, Michael Prysner, the U.S. war veteran and peace activist said that the invasion of Iraq in 2003 was “a complete sham” and not meant to liberate the Iraqis as pledged by U.S. authorities.

Prysner, a corporal in the U.S. army at the time of invasion, said he intended to help the Iraqi people but later realized every action by the U.S. military only added to the sufferings of the Iraqi people.

“I joined the army because I wanted to serve my country, because I believed that the U.S. military was a force for good in the world, that we helped those in need, that we freed the oppressed,” he noted.

“So, I believed that really in my heart and when the Iraq war started I volunteered to go on the deployment, I wanted to go, and I believed whole-heartedly that we were going to help the Iraqi people, and that's what I wanted to do and I was willing to give my life to that,” he added.

He admitted, however, that the war was a means of control of the battle-weary country.

“I saw that it was not for the liberation of the Iraqi people at all. I saw that it wasn't to help the Iraqi people at all, and I saw that I was doing exactly the opposite, that I was just hurting the Iraqi people,” said the former U.S. service member.

“Everyday was a catastrophe for them and it was seeing day by day the things that were committed against them, the lives that they had to live under occupation, I realized that it was a complete sham that we were there to help them,” he further explained.

“The goal of the U.S. government was to go in and quickly overthrow the government, and then set up a kind of State, I mean this is their fantasy of just easily overthrowing the country and that hasn't happened,” added Prysner who is now leader of March Forward, an organization of American veterans from both the Iraq and Afghanistan conflict.

Asked about his duties after the Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's removal from power in April 9 2003, Prysner said,” I did a variety of things, everything from prisoner interrogation - -I did that for many months - -I interrogated hundreds and hundreds of detainees, the vast majority of which had done absolutely nothing wrong.”

“I operated out of fire bases, I did home raids, I heard people's complaints whose homes had been destroyed, whose family members had been killed, who had mutilated themselves by U.S. bombs.”

Referring to the uncontrollable surge in Iraq violence and America's inability to curb the bloodshed, the war veteran said the U.S. was forced to pay the militants in Iraq in order to stop them from killing American soldiers.

“The U.S. soldiers have bogged down in that country, the only way that the violence and resistance were to be quelled was because over a hundred thousand fighters were put on the U.S. payroll, I mean they were paying people not to shoot at the Americans anymore,” he said.

He said the U.S. is left in a quagmire in Iraq as it has been unable to make the profit it sought.

“Iraq is still a very volatile state where the U.S. government and the corporate interest, that really are behind all of this, can't operate the way they want to in that country and that's why there's this quagmire that's going on, where the U.S. can't withdraw, because they can't have their economic interest satisfied at this point,” noted Prysner.


 

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