Getting involved in Iraq: What's at stake?

MINNEAPOLIS - As the Iraqi government loses control of large parts of its country, back home families whose lives were forever changed because of the Iraq War watch in anger.

"Our soldiers died for this. What are we doing?" asked Ken Drevnick of Woodbury.

Drevnick's 22-year-old son Daniel was killed in Basra, Iraq while fighting in the National Guard in 2009. And when the U.S. government pulled out of the country a few years ago, Drevnick feared the implications.

"Our biggest fear is that the country would be turned back over to insurgents and that all the men and women fought and lost their lives, injured, it would be in vain. And here it is, it's coming true."

How did we get here?

NBC News Foreign Correspondent Ayman Mohyeldin has spent years reporting in Iraq and spoke to us from London as he prepares to report from the country again on Sunday for the network.

"For the past several months, the Iraqi Prime Minister has alienated the Arab-Sunni population, his country has refused to share power with them," he said.

Mohyeldin told KARE 11 there is plenty of criticism to go around. He referenced the lack of inclusion by the Iraqi government has fueled the current violence. He also mentioned the problems that have occurred after the Obama administration essentially let Iraq sink or swim when leaving there.

"You can't ignore the lingering effects of the Iraq invasion of 2003 when the US invaded completely dissolving the Iraqi army, completely dissolving the Iraqi state institutions," he added.

So how do you fix it?

He believes it starts in Iraq with government officials bringing their alienated citizens back into the political process. But he says the most effective way to stabilizing Iraq for the long term is to first stabilize Syria where civil war has spilled over into Iraq.

All the while, families who sacrificed so much here at home fear the work their loved ones died for slip away.

"They laid down their lives and this is a big thing for all us," said Drevnick.


To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment