2003 invasion of Iraq

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The famous statue of Saddam Hussein being knocked down by US forces

The 2003 invasion of Iraq (March 20, 2003 - December 18, 2011) was the war fought by the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and some other countries against Iraq, to end the rule of Saddam Hussein.[1] The main reason that the war started was the United States government believed that Iraq had dangerous weapons of mass destruction that they were not telling the truth about.[2] This turned out not to be true. Many people thought that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, one of the leaders of al-Qaeda, was hiding in Iraq after the September 11, 2001 attacks.[3] Though Saddam Hussein was not involved in the planning of the September 11 attacks, many people accused him of giving al-Qaeda a safe place to hide from the United States. However that was not true since only a few low level al-Qaeda members were found hiding in Iraq before the invasion. Additionally, many al-Qaeda members in fact hated Hussein because they felt he was not a devout Muslim and that his government went against their religion.

4,734 Nato soldiers were killed in Iraq war including 4,416 U.S. servicemen,[4][5] 179 UK servicemen and 139 Other NATO soldiers. 31,882 U.S. servicemen and over 3,600 UK servicemen were wounded in Iraq.[6][7][8] More than 100,000 Iraqi civilians who were not soldiers were also killed.[9]

The secretary-general of the UN said that, "[F]rom our point of view and from the Charter point of view [the war] was illegal."[10]

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