• By Bill O'Reilly

    It was 10 years ago that President Bush launched an attack on Iraq.

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    SHEPARD SMITH, FOX NEWS HOST: Operation Iraqi Freedom has begun and the Pentagon says Saddam Hussein's days are numbered.

    I'm Shepard Smith. This is The Fox Report on Fox News Channel and tonight on Fox stations from coast to coast. Bombs and cruise missiles rained down on Baghdad for a second night in a row. And Saddam's main presidential palace taking a direct hit. Iraqi radio says Saddam Hussein's family home got hit as well.

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    O'REILLY: Now that marked eight long years of conflict in Iraq, almost 4,500 Americans dead, more than 32,000 wounded. Almost a $1 trillion spent. Was it worth it? Many liberals say no. Some conservatives say yes. The "Wall Street Journal" today supporting the war in Iraq on its editorial page. Of course, the "New York Times" thinks it was foolish.

    But no matter what you think. The Iraq war has changed America. We now have a $17 trillion debt. And obviously Iraq contributed to that. We also have thousands of wounded warriors. The country must take care of. And we have an ideological battle over how to deal with villains like Iran.

    As you may know, I supported the Iraq war based upon weapons of mass destruction intel. Subsequently, I believe we could have removed Saddam Hussein in another way. That would not have been so damaging to America. I mean the man had to go. He was a terrorist and an international outlaw. But in hindsight, we should have strangled him with a blockade and used our air power to destroy his infrastructure.

    But "Talking Points" is not a second guesser. My opinion about the Iraq war 10 years ago was based on reality. Not ideology or party politics.

    But the reality for America has now changed. As we are seeing in Afghanistan, we simply cannot impose democracy and human rights on nations that have no real desire for those things. As we'll show you later in the broadcast, most people in Iraq today despise the USA. And I think the same can be said for the Afghans. No matter how much good we do for these people, they don't like us. Because we are infidels.

    So we cannot, cannot wage war for any other reason than to protect the homeland. America and the coalition won the Iraq war because of our brave military and because President Bush finally wised up and used both brains and brawn. But we were lucky. Most Democrats wanted to surrender. Give Bush credit for toughing it out. But you can also criticize him for not anticipating the difficulties of that campaign.

    Bottom line, bottom line, let's not do that kind of thing again.

    And that's "The Memo."

    - You can catch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" weeknights at 8 and 11 p.m. ET on the Fox News Channel and any time on foxnews.com/oreilly. Send your comments to: oreilly@foxnews.com.