Like many, when rioting started in Tunisia in January, with Tunisians demanding political reform, I thought little of it. When the government was toppled I still paid little attention. However, when that wave of political frustration crashed into Hosni Mubarek's government in Egypt and ignited a political tidal wave of unrest and protest in a half dozen other Middle East and North African nations it was hard not to give pause.
These recent events have given me reason to conjecture and wonder aloud, "What would have happened if the US never entered into our "2003 war of choice" a.k.a. invading Iraq and overthrowing Saddam Hussein?" Would this current tsunami of political unrest topple Hussein? Its impossible to say for sure, but I would have preferred that scenario over what actually happened. Hussein was a terrible guy, but so are most of the leaders from this part of the world.
The former leaders of Tunisia and Egypt were American allies so we paid little attention to their attrocities because it was politically expedient. It's hard to imagine how amazing it would have been to support and encourage the people of Iraq to rise up against their former dictator and overthrow him. If it had happened, I'd like to believe it would bridge and embolden the political unrest in its neighboring state, Iran. Of course this is all conjecture and a lot of hypotheticals are assumed, but considering how the unimaginable has become reality in North Africa and the Middle East lately, it seems a lot less unlikely than it would have just a few months ago.