The al-Maliki government enacted policies that were widely seen as having the effect of alienating the country's Sunni minority and worsening sectarian tensions.

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The conflict continued for much of the next decade as an insurgency emerged to oppose the occupying forces and the post-invasion Iraqi government.

An estimated 151,000 to 600,000 or more Iraqis were killed in the first 3–4 years of conflict. The invasion led to the collapse of the Ba'athist government; Saddam was captured during Operation Red Dawn in December of that same year and executed by a military court three years later. Many violent insurgent groups were supported by Iran and al-Qaeda in Iraq. involvement in Iraq accelerated under President Barack Obama.

For previous wars in Iraq, see Iraq War (disambiguation).* "injured, diseased, or other medical": required medical air transport.

UK number includes "aeromed evacuations" ** Total excess deaths include all additional deaths due to increased lawlessness, degraded infrastructure, poorer healthcare, etc.

This policy involved numerous economic sanctions by the UN Security Council; the enforcement of Iraqi no-fly zones declared by the US and the UK to protect the Kurds in Iraqi Kurdistan and Shias in the south from aerial attacks by the Iraqi government; and ongoing inspections to ensure Iraq's compliance with United Nations resolutions concerning Iraqi weapons of mass destruction.

The inspections were carried out by the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM).After the invasion, no substantial evidence was found to verify the initial claims about WMDs, while claims of Iraqi officials collaborating with al-Qaeda were proven false.The rationale and misrepresentation of US prewar intelligence faced heavy criticism both domestically and internationally, with President Bush declining from his record-high approval ratings following 9/11 to become one of the most unpopular presidents in US history.This article is about the war that started in 2003 and ended in 2011.For the initial invasion, see 2003 invasion of Iraq.The Republican Party's campaign platform in the 2000 election called for "full implementation" of the Iraq Liberation Act as "a starting point" in a plan to "remove" Saddam.