Where do you think we would be today?
Would regime change still be the final common pathway to giving Iraq a new beginning or do you think SAddam and his sons would have been allowed to lead Iraq into the future unchecked, and everyone is cool with that.
Mr. Jp Fugley:
I don't think your two options are the only ones. I think a lot of people would have been less than cool with it.
However I suspect they would still be in power and committing atrocities against their own people.
Had the USA not chosen to depose them then no-one else would have.
Feel free to offer any scenario YOU see as most likely. I was just setting the ball in motion.
To me I guess it comes down to how much energy should the world waste on this one small country and this one leader.
Continue to moniter him until he and his sons are dead.
Tell him his penalty is over and he is free to pursue the future in his sovereign nation as he sees fit.
As Boab pointed out with Iran, why should he not be allowed to build nukes for himself. Who has the right to block him from importing and building what he desires.
We already know what he DID before, and my country, for certain, is on his shit list.
As I have said before, I doubt Iraq would ever shoot a nuke at the US, but he might give one to someone who might.
Short-term likelihood would be that things would have continued at par...Oil-for-Food was lining Saddam's pockets, so the U.N. wasn't a concern; Russia, France, China, Germany, et.al., were satiated.
Had Saddam died naturally, his sons surely would have assumed control, and the situation vis a vis the Iraqi citizenry likely would have worsened, which wouldn't have bothered anyone but ex-pat Iraqis greatly; it is largely true that, apart from Israel, there is no overweening concern for any of the mid-eastern countries by outside entities, apart from the latent concern for their oil, and that has been the raw stabilizing influence over the entire region for the past what, 75 years or so?
Apart from the Israeli/Palestinian situation, which is somewhat static, things could have gone on as they were for another 40-50 years, while the region's various constituents honed their own brand of nuclear detente.
Terrorism would be the wild-card, and the only ingredient likely to have caused outside powers to weigh in, which is, of course, what happened, except sooner, rather than later.