Inside USA: War’s impact

We look at the influence the US invasion of Iraq has on America and it’s elections.

Five years after the US invasion of Iraq, Inside USA looks at the impact of the war in America, and on this year’s presidential election.

Invading Iraq was, and remains America’s most defining, and divisive foreign policy moment in recent times.

It has brought widespread condemnation around the world, and has now become incredibly unpopular at home too.

In a poll this month, 63 per cent of Americans felt the war had not been worth fighting.

Those people can take their views to the ballot box in the presidential election when they have a chance to vote for a new commander in chief in November.

But not all people who live under Washington’s rule will have that opportunity.

Puerto Ricans have been fighting America’s wars for decades, but have no vote in November.

However, they are heavily recruited into the US Armed forces. In a special report from Puerto Rico, Inside USA takes a look at the US military’s recruiting tactics there, and examines the impact of the war in America’s carribbean territory.

This week, the programme also examines the charge that the US is putting in place a counter-insurgency in Iraq, based on a model from the Vietnam war.

Vietnam’s Phoenix Project was designed to identify and “neutralize” through infiltration, capture, or assassination the civilian infrastructure supporting the Viet Cong insurgency.

Thousands were killed in what some historians describe as an “assassination campaign”.

And we give the last word to some of America’s Iraq veterans. Some of them have been giving testimony about their time there.

These are stories they say have been silenced by the Pentagon and largely ignored by the mainstream media – eyewitness accounts of atrocities committed by themselves and their comrades.

Organised by Iraq Veterans Against the War, the event was modeled after the historic Winter Soldier hearings held in 1971, at the height of the Vietnam War.

This episode of Inside USA will broadcast from Saturday, March 22, 2008 at the following times GMT:

Saturday: 01:30, 11:30, 23:30
Sunday: 06:30, 19:00
Monday: 07:00

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