The 2003 invasion and occupation of Iraq and the logic of intervention

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This article is featured in Orient III/2023.

20 years on from the US-led invasion and occupation of Iraq, this article offers a critical reflection on the evolution of the worldviews, norms and policies informing the international dimension of the intervention, as well as both the local and international repercussions thereof. It demonstrates how international policies were formulated with little consideration for the needs of Iraqis, but were instead informed by international agendas. Nonetheless, the adaptation and failures of policies on the ground in Iraq have influenced wider international agendas.

Dylan O’Driscoll is Associate Professor at the Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations (CTPSR) at the University of Coventry, UK, where he leads the Peace and Conflict Research Theme. He is also Associate Senior Fellow at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).

Irene Costantini is Assistant Professor in International Relations at the University of Naples, l’Orientale, Italy. Her research is focused on the politics of international interventions in conflictaffected context, particularly across the Middle East and North Africa Region.

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