> No, they didn't, but it was obvious to everybody and clear from history that the USA wasn't interested in
> annexing Iraq into US territory. So the comparison to what Russia has done with part of Ukraine is a false one.
True, Putin can at least claim he is protecting Russians (and might even believe it), the US-Iraq wars were just about controlling the oil.
> USA has taken territory it could have just kept for itself,
Eh... This is not a game of Risk.
> But we don't do that, and haven't acted like an imperial power, increasing our borders
> though military force, for a LONG time.
Again, this is not Risk. Please go to the library and look up the concept of Imperialism, it does in no way have to involve annexing territories - controlling countries through puppet governments (Iraq, for example) is how it's done since at least the 18th century.