THE CONDITIONS FOR VICTORY IN IRAQ?
By Lara Maupin, a social studies teacher at Thomas Jefferson
High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Virginia
What will victory in Iraq look like? How will coalition forces know when
they have won? This lesson may be used to address these questions with
your students. It should take 15 -20 minutes and may be used in any social
Students will need printed copies of the NewsHour
Extra article cited below or computers with Internet access.
to National Standards
- 1. Give
your students some background on recent events:
Explain that while government officials and forces were still a presence
in Baghdad on Tuesday they were not on Wednesday.
CNN reported that it was as if a switch had been flipped. Iraqis celebrated
in the streets of Baghdad and other parts of Iraq and looted government
Iraqi-Americans in Michigan celebrated in the streets.
Defense Secretary Rumsfeld stated at his morning briefing that it was
"a good day for the Iraqi people." At the same time, Rumsfeld
and other administration and military spokesmen and officials urged
caution and warned that the war is not over.
White House Press Secretary Ari Fleisher stated in a Wednesday afternoon
news conference that the military mission is not over and that the President
would be guided by the military analysis in determining when the war
On the other hand, it was reported on CNN that the Iraqi ambassador
to the U.N., said that "the game is over."
your students read the following NewsHour
Extra story. Discuss:
· What is the significance of Iraqis and Marines pulling down
the statue of Sadddam Hussein?
· What responsibility do coalition forces have to maintain
security and prevent looting and chaos, if any?
· Is it too soon to start looking at what happens next and
the reconstruction of Iraq?
For more information on this topic, you may have your students
read Online NewsHour's "Winning the Peace" http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/military/jan-june03/peace_04-9.html
- Ask your
students how they think we will know when the war is over. What needs
to happen? Brainstorm and generate a class list of requirements for
victory. Suggest others and discuss. You may use the following list
as a guide in your discussion. How many of the following requirements
must be met for victory to be declared?
· no more pockets of resistance
· all of Iraq under coalition control
· humanitarian aid flowing to all Iraqis in need; basic services
· urban areas secure / no looting, rioting, or massive civil
· Iraqis emerging to help with civil service functions and reconstruction
· new Iraqi regime in place (interim / selected? democratically
· Saddam Hussein accounted for and either dead or in custody
· weapons of mass destruction accounted for and destroyed
the current situation in Iraq to that in Afghanistan. How important
to declaring victory are the capture or death of Osama Bin Laden and
Saddam Hussein? How was a new government put in place after the fall
of the Taliban in Afghanistan? Is the process likely to be similar in
Iraq? Why does fighting continue in Afghanistan? Why has the attention
of the public and the media turned away from Afghanistan to some extent?
Might this happen in Iraq as well? Students research, discuss, and write
an analysis in which they compare/contrast the two conflicts.
one military conflict of the 20th century (For example, World War I
and II, The Vietnam War, The Korean War, etc. )and research how it ended.
How was victory, peace, or a cease-fire declared and by whom? What agreements
were made? What lasting impact did the conflict have on those nations
or groups involved in the years that followed? Students write about
and/or share their findings orally.
the fall of Saddam to the fall of Stalin. Examine photos of the two
(Click here a picture of a fallen statue of Stalin http://travel.guardian.co.uk/gallery/image/0,8564,-10804115628,00.html
or for a picture of the defaced head of the statue of Josef Stalin from
the University of Victoria.
What parallels can be made in terms of the symbolism of people tearing
down these massive statues? What other parallels may be drawn between
the two leaders? Discuss.
Council for the Social Studies Thematic
II. Time, Continuity and Change
V. Individuals, Groups, and Institutions
VI. Power, Authority, and Governance
IV. Global Connections
Author Lara Maupin teaches social studies at
Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria,
Virginia. She is on leave during the 2002-2003 school year. She has a
Masterís Degree in Secondary Social Studies Education from George Washington
University and a Bachelorís Degree in Anthropology and Philosophy from
Mount Holyoke College.
To find out more about opportunities to contribute
to this site, contact Leah Clapman at firstname.lastname@example.org.