Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Why Iraqi-Saudi ties are backsliding yet again

Iraq is facing a new crisis with Saudi Arabia as a result of their differing points of view regarding regional issues, most notably those related to Lebanon-based Hezbollah, which was recently classified by the Arab League and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) as a terrorist organization. The crisis started March...

Spy agencies produced flawed information on Saddam’s WMDs

Chilcot criticises UK intelligence services for persisting in misguided belief Iraqi leader had weapons of mass destruction. The Chilcot report identifies a series of major blunders by the British intelligence services that produced “flawed” information about Saddam Hussein's alleged weapons of mass destruction (WMDs), the basis for going to war. The...

US sends in Marines to join ground fight against Isis in Iraq

Deployment comes one day after US serviceman killed in an Isis rocket attack. A detachment of US Marines has been dispatched to Iraq to join the ground fight against Isis. The Marines sent are from the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), an air-ground fighting force of 2,200 soldiers. However, it is...

The CIA Just Declassified the Document That Supposedly Justified the Iraq Invasion

Thirteen years ago, the intelligence community concluded in a 93-page classified document used to justify the invasion of Iraq that it lacked "specific information" on "many key aspects" of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs. But that's not what top Bush administration officials said during their campaign to sell the war...

To Many Iraqis, U.S. Isn’t Really Seeking to Defeat Islamic State

American military response is criticized as too weak. BAGHDAD—In a tent city under a highway overpass in Baghdad, refugees from Iraq’s Sunni province of Anbar were unanimous about whom to blame for their misery. “I hold Americans responsible for destroying Anbar,” said former policeman Wassem Khaled, whose home was taken over...

Western oil firms remain as US exits Iraq

The end of the US military occupation does not mean Iraqis have full control of their oil. Baghdad, Iraq - While the US military has formally ended its occupation of Iraq, some of the largest western oil companies, ExxonMobil, BP and Shell, remain. On November 27, 38 months after Royal Dutch...

What is Turkish army really doing in Iraq?

A cannon shot roared into the night. The target was in the town of Bashiqa in northern Iraq, seized by the Islamic State (IS) in 2014. Seconds after the explosion, the clatter of a collapsing building echoed in the mountain. For months now, the Turkish army has repeatedly targeted IS...

ISIS Forces That Now Control Ramadi Are Ex-Baathist Saddam Loyalists

The fall of Ramadi, capital of Iraq’s Anbar Province, to the Islamic State last month has frayed nerves in Washington, but what few appear to grasp is that ISIS's May offensive has given Ramadi back to its former owners — the ex-Baathist Sunni terrorists known as the Former Regime Loyalists....

Elite U.S. targeting force has arrived in Iraq to fight the Islamic State

FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. – An elite U.S. Special Operations targeting force has arrived in Iraq and will carry out operations against the Islamic State, part of a broader effort in 2016 to strike at the militants and that also includes U.S. Special Operations troops in Syria, Defense Secretary Ashton...

Hillary Clinton Hosts Iraq Opportunities Party For War Profiteers

As Congress launches a bipartisan PR campaign to stay in Iraq forever, the White House throws a corporate looting party: FIRST LOOK: WALL STREET IN IRAQ? – Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Deputy Secretary Tom Nides (formerly chief administrative officer at Morgan Stanley) will host a group of corporate executives at...

Iraq’s leader to seek arms, with deferred payment, on U.S. visit

(Reuters) - Iraq's prime minister will seek President Barack Obama's help to acquire billions of dollars in drones and other U.S. arms to fight Islamic State during a U.S. visit next week but wants to defer payment for the purchases, a senior Iraqi official said. Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi is...

International Criminal Court Investigates Human Rights Abuses by British Forces in Iraq

The long-anticipated Chilcot inquiry into the Iraq War released Wednesday contains stinging indictments of Britain's role in the U.S.-led invasion, detailing failures starting with the exaggerated threat posed by Saddam Hussein through the disastrous lack of post-invasion planning. An element conspicuously missing from the report, however, are allegations of...

Here’s How ISIS Is Wrecking Iraq’s Oil Industry

The Islamic State has taken over several oil-producing areas in Iraq and Syria, raising fears that the group could leverage its hydrocarbon wealth to the point of economic self-sufficiency. A Washington Post article today complicates that picture: ISIS is indeed producing between 25,000 and 40,000 barrels of oil a...

Iraq crisis: Sunni caliphate has been bankrolled by Saudi Arabia

Bush and Blair said Iraq was a war on Islamic fascism. They lost. So after the grotesquerie of the Taliban and Osama bin Laden and 15 of the 19 suicide killers of 9/11, meet Saudi Arabia’s latest monstrous contribution to world history: the Islamist Sunni caliphate of Iraq and the...

If the Kurds Go Broke, It’s Lights Out for Obama’s War on the Islamic...

Here’s a worrying bit of news: America’s best ally in the war against the Islamic State, Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), is nearly broke. That’s a major problem, especially as the U.S.-led coalition gears up for its most difficult battle yet: the effort to liberate Mosul, the heart of...

Dunford Just Acknowledged US Troops In Iraq Are Engaged In Combat Operations

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs finally acknowledged troops are fighting in combat operations in Iraq. While the White House maintains that U.S. troops supporting the fight against Islamic State militants are not in a combat role, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff acknowledged Thursday that troops are...

Turkey demands role in Mosul battle, but coalition unconvinced

With US-led operations against the Islamic State’s strongholds of Raqqa in Syria and Mosul in Iraq looming, Ankara and Washington are engaged in intense talks to determine Turkey's involvement in them. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has indicated that Turkey wants in on both operations, declaring that US President Barack Obama called for...

Secret memos expose link between oil firms and invasion of Iraq

Plans to exploit Iraq's oil reserves were discussed by government ministers and the world's largest oil companies the year before Britain took a leading role in invading Iraq, government documents show. The papers, revealed here for the first time, raise new questions over Britain's involvement in the war, which had...

The Real Purpose Behind the Liberation of Mosul?

When Mosul falls, Isis will flee to the safety of Syria. But what then? The entire Isis caliphate army could be directed against the Assad government and its allies – a scenario which might cause some satisfaction in Washington. Syria’s army and Hezbollah and Iranian allies are preparing for a massive...

Isis faces likely defeat in battles across Iraq and Syria – but what happens...

In the second of a four-part series examining Isis, Patrick Cockburn says the terror group may be under threat, but regaining the terrority it captured would not necessarily stabilise the region. Isis is under attack in and around the last three big cities it holds in Iraq and Syria –...
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General Richard Dannatt: The Military/Civilian Cultural Gulf and Who is really being engaged in...

General Sir Richard Dannatt, Chief of the General Staff, gave a presentation at the International Institute For Strategic Studies as part of a Military Leaders Forum in London. Unlike our cartoon like senior officer types, the UK General seems articulate, appears to have a knowledge of recent history and...

Abadi says we are ready if Turkey wants war

What is Turkey up to? The question gained fresh urgency today as Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Isik and Land Forces Commander Gen. Zeki Colak inspected troops in Hatay near the Syrian border a day after Turkish forces backed by tanks and other combat vehicles massed near the town of Silopi on Turkey's border...

Suspicions Run Deep in Iraq That C.I.A. and the Islamic State Are United

BAGHDAD — The United States has conducted an escalating campaign of deadly airstrikes against the extremists of the Islamic State for more than a month. But that appears to have done little to tamp down the conspiracy theories still circulating from the streets of Baghdad to the highest levels...

CIA Files Prove America Helped Saddam as He Gassed Iran

The U.S. knew Hussein was launching some of the worst chemical attacks in history -- and still gave him a hand. The U.S. government may be considering military action in response to chemical strikes near Damascus. But a generation ago, America’s military and intelligence communities knew about and did nothing...

What Donald Rumsfeld Knew We Didn’t Know About Iraq

The document reveals gaps of intelligence on WMD. Why didn’t the Pentagon chief share it? On September 9, 2002, as the George W. Bush administration was launching its campaign to invade Iraq, a classified report landed on the desk of the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. It came...

Chilcot Report: Tony Blair Told George W. Bush, If We Win Quickly, Everyone Will...

The Chilcot report, the U.K.’s official inquiry into its participation in the Iraq War, has finally been released after seven years of investigation. Its executive summary certainly makes former Prime Minister Tony Blair, who led the British push for war, look terrible. According to the report, Blair made statements about Iraq’s nonexistent chemical, biological, and...

Syria slams Turkey over troop deployment in Iraq

Syria slammed Turkey on Sunday for deploying hundreds of troops in neighboring Iraq, accusing Ankara of playing a "destructive role" against both Arab countries. Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has described the deployment as a routine rotation of forces that set up a camp almost a year ago near the...

ISIS Is Not a Terrorist Group

Why Counterterrorism Won’t Stop the Latest Jihadist Threat. After 9/11, many within the U.S. national security establishment worried that, following decades of preparation for confronting conventional enemies, Washington was unready for the challenge posed by an unconventional adversary such as al Qaeda. So over the next decade, the United States...

Has the US found a new friend in Iraq’s Shiite militias?

On March 12, US Consul General Steve Walker visited Al-Sadr Teaching Hospital in Basra to pay his respects to wounded members of the Popular Mobilization Units. The visit marked the first time a US official has publicly met these troops. This is particularly remarkable as until now, the official US position toward the Popular Mobilization...

Shiite Militias Are Crashing the Mosul Offensive

Pro-Iran militias are looking to settle an old grudge in one of the Islamic State's strongholds in northern Iraq. One of the mysteries about the ongoing offensive in Mosul, where Iraqi security forces are now pressing into the northern, eastern, and southern edges of the city, has been the apparent...

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