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20 Years Ago: George W. Bush Gives “Axis of Evil” Speech a Year Before Illegal Invasion of Iraq

HeadlineJan 28, 2022

Saturday marks 20 years since then-President George W. Bush branded the nations of Iraq, Iran and North Korea the “axis of evil” during his first State of the Union address.

President George W. Bush: “States like these, and their terrorist allies, constitute an axis of evil, arming to threaten the peace of the world.”

A little over a year later, the U.S. invaded Iraq, despite lacking any evidence Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. The attack was widely considered illegal under international law. According to the Costs of War project at Brown University, there have been over 180,000 Iraqi civilians killed by direct violence since the U.S. invasion. 

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