NORFOLK, Va. — Two decades ago this month on March 20, 2003, the U.S. launched an aerial and land assault on terror, invading Iraq based on intelligence the country had weapons of mass destruction.
“I think there are reasons for war, but I haven’t seen a just one yet,” said one local Iraq war protestor in a story 13News Now reported in 2003.
We’d spend the next decade debating the justification for the war in Iraq.
Thousands of lives were lost, and trillions of dollars in resources were poured into the war, and no weapons of mass destruction were ever found.
Even though the war has been over since 2010, the legislative justification that allowed it to happen in the first place remains on the books to this day. So does the original Authorization for the Use of Military Force for the first Iraq war, Operation Desert Storm, back in 1991.
"Iraq is now a partner. They're not an enemy,” said Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine during an interview with 13News Now this month. “It's time for Congress to exercise our authority and declare the Iraq war over."
Kaine is co-sponsoring legislation that would repeal the two measures that allow broad approval for military action in Iraq.
With bipartisan support for the bill, the Senate could vote on the measure any day now. The bill would then head to the House of Representatives.
If approved, the legislation would bring the country one step closer to righting what some say was a generation-defining wrong, two decades later.