Thursday, November 14, 2019

News On Kidnapped Iraq Activists

Activist Sabi al-Mahdawi was released after being kidnapped in Baghdad (Twitter)


There was good and bad news about kidnapped Iraqi protesters on November 13. First, Saba al-Mahdawi and Ali Hashim were both released. No details were given on what happened to them. On the other hand, another protester, Mohammed Hassan al-Tarifi, a university student from Najaf was taken by unknown forces. Mahdawi was going home from Tahrir Square in Baghdad when armed men picked her up and she was not heard from for over a week. There was one report that Hashim had been killed. This is the type of intimidation demonstrators are facing. Elements of the security forces are going after people to scare them in the hopes that they will stop protesting. This has included taking pictures of demonstrators, threatening text messages, and using the anti-terror law against people.  

This Day In Iraqi History - Nov 14


1963 Baath meeting voided Nov 11 election that exiled Sec Gen Sadi and exiled two of
Sadi’s opponents to Lebanon Sadi said he was returning to Baghdad with Syrian Baathists
1973 KDP delegation went to Moscow where Soviets tried to mediate its dispute with Communists
(Musings On Iraq book review Red Star Over Iraq, Iraqi Communism Before Saddam)
(Musings On Iraq Interview with Prof Johan Franzen on the history of the Iraqi Communist Party)
1980 Iraq offensive to take Susangard Khuzistan started Iraq took town in Sep but abandoned it
(Musings On Iraq interview with author Anthony Tucker-Jones on Iran-Iraq War)
(Musings On Iraq interview with author Tom Cooper on Iran-Iraq War)
(Musings On Iraq book review The Iran-Iraq War 1980-1988)
(Musings On Iraq book review Iran-Iraq War, The Lion of Babylon, 1980-1988)
(Musings On Iraq book review The Iran-Iraq War)
(Musings On Iraq book review Iran-Iraq War Volume 4: The Forgotten Fronts)
1991 Kurds announced tentative deal with Saddam to end blockade of Kurdistan in return for
Peshmerga withdrawing from cities
(Musings On Iraq book review of The Kurds, A Modern History)
(Musings On Iraq book review Kurds of Iraq, Tragedy and Hope)
1992 Iranian Turkish Syrian officials met in Ankara Condemned Kurdish autonomous region and
warned they would not allow break up of Iraq
1997 Clinton said by expelling UN inspectors Iraq would have sanctions until the “end of
            time”
1998 Clinton outlined 5 conditions Iraq had to meet with UN Included unconditional access by
inspectors and turning over all documents If Iraq didn’t agree US would strike
(Musings On Iraq book review The United States And Iraq Since 1990: A Brief History with Documents)
(Musings On Iraq article UN Inspectors Were Right Iraq Was Not A Threat)
(Musings On Iraq article Iraq’s Rejection of UN Inspectors Led To Mistrust Over WMD and 2003 Invasion)
2001 Def Policy Board head Perle speech at For Policy Research Institute Said Iraq behind 9/11 and
should be attacked
2001 VP Cheney said he knew 9/11 hijacker Atta met with Iraq intelligence in Prague in 2001 Story false
(Musings On Iraq book review Wanting War: Why the Bush Administration Invaded Iraq)
2002 UK For Sec Straw told cabinet UN Resolution 1441 authorized military action against Iraq
without a 2nd resolution
(Musings On Iraq Book Review The Report of the Iraq Inquiry, Executive Summary)
2002 UK intel report said Iraq accepted new weapons inspectors to avoid US led attack and would
continue to hide its most important WMD programs
(Musings On Iraq article UN Inspectors Were Right Iraq Was Not A Threat)
(Musings On Iraq article Iraq’s Rejection of UN Inspectors Led To Mistrust Over WMD and 2003 Invasion)
2002 Def Policy Board’s Perle quoted INC defector ex-nuke scientist Hamza that Iraq could get
nuclear bomb and attack US Called for preventive action vs Iraq
(Musings On Iraq article on how poor US intel work led to claim Iraq rebuilt its nuclear weapons program)
2003 Japan decided to hold off deploying troops to Iraq due to rising violence
2003 South Korea ordered its 464 troops in southern Iraq to suspend operations due to rising violence
2003 Denmark rejected call to send 100 more troops to Iraq due to rising violence
2003 US army intel report said insurgency successfully prevented CPA from providing safe and
secure Iraq Said US failed in Iraq because relied upon conventional military tactics and didn’t understand Iraqi culture Said insurgents were targeting tribal structure in Iraq while US ignored it
2004 Insurgents kidnapped wounded police from Mosul hospital and dismembered them Led to ½ of
city’s police to quit
2004 Iraqi police commandos sent into Mosul to recapture police stations after all but one fell to
insurgents in city
2004 Report Sevan UN officials accused of getting kickbacks from Iraq under Oil for Food Program
UN official told his staff not to investigate corruption
2005 Pentagon’s Insp Gen announced investigation into Pentagon intel unit on Iraq-Al Qaeda ties
led by Deputy Sec Def Feith to see whether it did anything illegal
2006 National Police arrested 159 people from Higher Educ Min in Baghdad 70 were never seen again and
presumed killed 5 senior police officers and an army general were arrested for kidnapping but nothing happened Ministry was run by Iraqi Accordance Front PM Maliki initially said event was due to militia rivalries Then denied police or militias involved PM Maliki also claimed only 39 taken and 37 of them freed
(Musings On Iraq book review Voices From Iraq, A People’s History, 2003-2009)
2006 Anbar council agreed to 8 new members picked by Awakening
(Musings On Iraq article on Anbar Awakening)
(Musings On Iraq article on change in perceptions that led to Awakening)
(Musings On Iraq interview with author Carter Malkasian on Anbar Awakening)
(Musings On Iraq book review of Confronting Al Qaeda, The Sunni Awakening and American Strategy In Al Anbar)
(Musings On Iraq book review of The Marines Take Anbar, The Four-Year Fight Against Al Qaeda)
(Musings On Iraq book review Illusions of Victory, The Anbar Awakening And The Rise Of The Islamic State)
2007 Sunni Endowment closed offices of Muslim Scholars Association in Baghdad claiming it stood
with ISI
2008 PM Maliki announced power plan to have production meet demand by 2012 Would cost up to
$5.5 bil Came after govt signed contracts with GE and Siemens in Sep to boost production
(Musings On Iraq article on Maliki’s power plan)
2013 US Natl Counterterrorism Center testified to Congress that ISIS was strongest since its peak in
2006
2017 Iraq Federal Court rejected appeal by ex-Kirkuk Governor Karim to reverse his dismissal by
Iraqi parliament

View the Iraq History Timelines 

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

New School Strike And Continued Protest Actions In Southern Iraq

Students on strike in Maysan province (Al Ghad Press)


Iraq’s Teachers’ Union called for a new general strike after the first one expired a few days ago. That shut down most of the country’s schools in the south. Speaking of that region, protesters tried to re-start the sit-in camp in Basra, there were more clashes in Dhi Qar, and new demonstrations in Karbala and Maysan.

This Day In Iraqi History - Nov 13


1929 PM Sadoun shot himself due to criticism he faced over his performance
1963 Baath National Guard commander Wandawi began bombing Rasheed Camp while Guard
rampaged through Baghdad
1963 Baath Sec Gen Sadi said party run by new 15 member council headed by Gen Bakr
1980 Iraq launched new attack in Khuzistan province southern Iran Attacked Dezful but stopped
after only a few miles Iran counterattacked and recaptured Alvan Shush Naderi Iraq attacked Ahwaz but got stuck
(Musings On Iraq book review Iran-Iraq War Volume 4: The Forgotten Fronts)
1981 UN Resolution 36/27 again criticized Israel’s destruction of Osirak nuclear reactor and said
Israel should pay for damages
1982 Saddam ran informal referendum backed by pro-Saddam marches
1986 Rev Command Council meeting believed Israel was behind Reagan selling weapons to Iran in
Iran-Contra scandal
(Musings On Iraq interview with author Anthony Tucker-Jones on Iran-Iraq War)
(Musings On Iraq interview with author Tom Cooper on Iran-Iraq War)
(Musings On Iraq book review The Iran-Iraq War 1980-1988)
(Musings On Iraq book review Iran-Iraq War, The Lion of Babylon, 1980-1988)
(Musings On Iraq book review The Iran-Iraq War)
1991 Saddam replaced Interior Minister Ali Hassan al-Majid with Wathban Ibrahim Hassan
1992 Turkey began withdrawing troop after month long operation in norther Kurdistan against PKK
1995 KDP and PUK restarted US brokered peace talks to end civil war but came to no agreement
(Musings On Iraq book review of The Kurds, A Modern History)
1998 Tariq Aziz told CNN UN inspectors spying for US and Israel
1998 UN chief Annan sent letter to Saddam saying he had to cooperate with inspectors to avoid a
US-UK military strike Annan told Iraq that if cooperated with inspectors Security Council would discuss Iraq’s disarmament to move towards ending sanctions
1998 Countries told Iraq that if it didn’t back down on inspectors it would be hit by US within 24
hours
1998 Iraq sent letter to UN blaming US for blocking review of Iraq’s disarmament Said because of
UN chief Annan it would cooperate with inspectors again
1998 Tariq Aziz went on CNN to say that Iraq would let inspectors return US B-52 bombers were
only about an hour away from bombing Iraq Clinton recalled them
(Musings On Iraq article UN Inspectors Were Right Iraq Was Not A Threat)
(Musings On Iraq article Iraq’s Rejection of UN Inspectors Led To Mistrust Over WMD and 2003 Invasion)
(Musings On Iraq book review The Saddam Tapes)
2002 Iraq accepted UN Resolution 1441 to allow UN weapons inspectors
(Musings On Iraq article UN Inspectors Were Right Iraq Was Not A Threat)
(Musings On Iraq article Iraq’s Rejection of UN Inspectors Led To Mistrust Over WMD and 2003 Invasion)
2002 Def Sec Rumsfeld memo to Bush Said inspections were important because Saddam would make a
mistake and the military would be ready to react as soon as Bush gave the order
2002 PM Blair said that goal of UN Res 1441 was disarming Iraq not regime change
2002 PM Blair told UK cabinet that UN Res 1441 meant military action could be taken against Iraq in case
of violations without a 2nd resolution
(Musings On Iraq Book Review The Report of the Iraq Inquiry, Executive Summary)
2003 US forces launched Op Iron Hammer to hunt down insurgents in Baghdad
2005 US forces found 173 prisoners in secret prison in Baghdad run by Badr unit of Interior Ministry
Prisoners were tortured
(Musings On Iraq article on the history of Badr Organization)
2005 18 Sunni men found handcuffed blindfolded and shot in Baghdad
(Musings On Iraq book review Voices From Iraq, A People’s History, 2003-2009)
2006 Bush met Iraq Study Group Said Iraq part of ideological struggle in world Said US needed to
back PM Maliki Group didn’t think Bush knew what victory in Iraq meant besides platitudes
2006 Iraq Study Group met with US Cmdr Iraq Gen Casey who said Iraqis had to eventually take
control of own affairs Casey said that sectarian violence problem in Iraq but PM Maliki only talked about Baathists
(Musings On Iraq article on pre-Surge US Iraq strategy)
2006 Iraq Study Group met CIA Dir Hayden who said Maliki govt only talked about Baathists not
sectarian violence Hayden said stable and democratic Iraq may not be possible
2006 Dep Cmdr US forces in Anbar said Baghdad wasn’t paying police in province and Anbaris felt
Baghdad neglecting them Maliki govt claimed ghost police hindered paying forces
2006 Weekly Standard had two OpEds by Frederick Kagan criticizing Bush admin for not sending
enough troops to Iraq and calling for temporary troop surge to stabilize country Kagan helped draft plan that would lead to Surge
(Musings On Iraq interview with Prof Mansoor on the Surge)
2007 Karbala fired 340 police linked to Mahdi Army Part of conflict between ISCI and Sadrists for control
of south
2007 Report Still sectarian fighting in Baghdad’s Sadiya and Salam Amil Baya Jihad Shurta Rabia ceasefires
made between Sunnis and Shiites Bodies found civilians killed car bombings all down since start of 07 Life returning to central Bagdhad Shops re-opening
(Musings On Iraq book review Voices From Iraq, A People’s History, 2003-2009)
(Musings On Iraq Columbia University Charts Sectarian Cleansing Of Baghdad)
2008 Iraqi Army following Order 101 moved to evict 4,000 squatters from Hurriya Baghdad Was
supposed to allow displaced to return to area Were mostly Shiite who had moved into area after Sunnis were expelled during civil war
(Musings On Iraq article on Order 101)
2008 MP Latif gave petition to Election Commission calling for referendum to turn Basra into
federal region Effort failed
(Musings On Iraq article on effort to turn Basra into region)
2013 Fallujah’s mayor killed by a sniper
2015 Peshmerga freed Sinjar town
2016 Iraqi forces freed Nimrod Ninewa

View the Iraq History Timelines 

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

New Clashes In South Iraq As Another Activist Disappears In Baghdad

Basra (Al Mirbad)


There were new clashes between demonstrators and the security forces (ISF) in southern Iraq. That centered around Basra where people tried to return to the city after the sit in site was broken up by the authorities as well as Nasiriya where there was a  confrontation outside government offices for the second day. Finally, in Baghdad another activist has gone missing.

This Day In Iraqi History - Nov 12


1914 British forces in Fao launched reconnaissance in force near Salhan, Basra
1927 Kurdish MP Rowanduzi said Shiites and Kurds both opposed govt conscription for army
1963 Baath founder Aflaq went to Iraq to solve internal Baath dispute
1968 68 coup member Nasir al-Hani special adv to Pres Bakr assassinated
1991 Govt and Kurds agreed to ceasefire Iraq would end blockade of Kurdistan and Peshmerga
would withdraw to Irbil
(Musings On Iraq book review of The Kurds, A Modern History)
(Musings On Iraq book review Kurds of Iraq, Tragedy and Hope)
1997 Iraq expelled 6 US weapons inspectors claiming they were spies Almost entire inspection staff
withdrawn as a result
1997 UN Resolution 1137 demanded Iraq allow full and unhindered weapons inspections
(Musings On Iraq book review The Saddam Tapes)
(Musings On Iraq article UN Inspectors Were Right Iraq Was Not A Threat)
(Musings On Iraq article Iraq’s Rejection of UN Inspectors Led To Mistrust Over WMD and 2003 Invasion)
(Musings On Iraq Chilcot Report Sec 1.1 UK Iraq Strategy 1990 To 2000)
(Musings On Iraq article Charles Duelfer’s Account Of The End Of The 1990s U.N. Inspections)
1997 Wall St Journal op ed by David Wurmser called for US supporting INC and revolt in Iraq
(Musings On Iraq book review The Road to Iraq, The Making of a Neoconservative War)
1998 Iraq Amb to UN told military strike impending if did not agree to work with weapons
inspectors again
2001 INC presented Iraqi defector Lami who claimed Iraq training terrorists at Salman Pak and had
anthrax
2001 Safire column NY Times said 9/11 hijacker Atta met with Iraqi diplomat in 2001 was undisputed
fact Story false
2002 CENTCOM Cmdr Gen Franks said if US didn't act on Iraq it could acquire and use a nuclear
weapon
(Musings On Iraq article on how poor US intel work led to claim Iraq rebuilt its nuclear weapons program)
2002 Attny Gen Lord Goldsmith told Foreign Sec Straw that he wasn’t sure UN Resolution 1441
would give legal basis for war with Iraq Straw told Goldsmith he thought 1441 meant Iraq had to comply or else
2002 NYTimes article claimed Iraq bought anti-WMD drugs as sign that it had WMD and was going
to use it
2003 Zarqawi bombed Italian police in Nasiriyah killing 19 Italians 15 civilians and wounding
around 100
(Musings On Iraq book review The Caliphate At War, Operational Realities and Innovations of the Islamic State)
2003 Bush decided US should turn over sovereignty to Iraq early against CPA plan
2004 Marines attacked southern Fallujah 2nd Battle of Fallujah
(Musings On Iraq book review The Battle for Fallujah, Occupation, Resistance and Stalemate in the War in Iraq)
2004 Sec State Powell told Bush and PM Blair weren’t enough ground forces in Iraq to secure country
2005 US Iraq Cmdr Gen Casey told Def Sec Rumsfeld Iraq might take 9-13 yrs
(Musings On Iraq article on pre-Surge US Iraq strategy)
2006 AP estimated avg of 45 killed per day in Baghdad UN estimated 100 violent deaths per day in
Iraq
(Musings On Iraq Columbia University Charts Sectarian Cleansing Of Baghdad)
2006 2 suicide bombers hit crowd of police recruits in Baghdad Killed 35 wounded 56 In Baquba
Diyala 50 bodies found
(Musings On Iraq book review Voices From Iraq, A People’s History, 2003-2009)
2006 120 Albu Alwan tribesmen following Sheikh Raad Sabah al-Alwani volunteered for Anbar police
(Musings On Iraq article on Anbar Awakening)
(Musings On Iraq article on change in perceptions that led to Awakening)
(Musings On Iraq interview with author Carter Malkasian on Anbar Awakening)
(Musings On Iraq book review of Confronting Al Qaeda, The Sunni Awakening and American Strategy In Al Anbar)
(Musings On Iraq book review of The Marines Take Anbar, The Four-Year Fight Against Al Qaeda)
(Musings On Iraq book review Illusions of Victory, The Anbar Awakening And The Rise Of The Islamic State)
2006 Report Cmdr Iraq 5th Div in Diyala came into office with list of Sunnis to arrest from Maliki
govt US commanders believed 5th Div going after Sunni sheikhs and politicians to stop community organizing politically US also accused ISF of running death squds in Muqtadiya
2006 PM Maliki told MPs his govt was weak because political parties had forced ministers on him
Some were incompetent
2007 Interior Min claimed ISI War Min Masri killed Wasn’t true Said 75% of insurgent leaders dead
Admitted to using torture to get confessions
2007 Report US organized Sahwa of former insurgents in Babil’s Jurf al-Sakhr Based upon Janabi tribe
many of which were in Islamic Army Made deal with Mahdi Army in nearby Musayib to halt attacks
2007 Sahwa in Baghdad’s Adhamiya claimed ISI driven out of district
2009 PM Maliki told sheikhs in Sadr City that enemies of Iraq were going to use 2010 elections undermine
the country
(Musings On Iraq Maliki Returns to Sectarian Politics)
2011 Diyala council voted to make province a federal region
(Musings On Iraq article on Diyala’s attempt to become federal region)
(Musings On Iraq book review Iraq From War To A New Authoritarianism)

View the Iraq History Timelines 

Monday, November 11, 2019

Protests Continue In Iraq After Basra Demos Put Down

Were clashes between protesters and security forces in Nasiriya (Al Mirbad)


The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) successfully shut down the protests in Basra city and Um Qasr port using force. November 10 the authorities closed off the central square in Basra city and arrested those that showed up to demonstrate. Students however came out at their university in Zubayr in support of the larger movement. In Baghdad six people were killed in clashes trying to enter Khalani Square, which the government cleared yesterday. An office of the Justice Ministry was burned in the center of the city as well. Activists continued with events in the south. Government offices were shut down by protests in Babil’s Hilla. In Dhi Qar’s Shatrah people burned three politicians’ houses from Sairoon, Fatah, and State of Law. There were also clashes as people tried to enter the education directorate in Nasiriya leading to three deaths. A border crossing with Iran was temporarily blocked by crowds in Maysan as was a radio station in Diwaniya. Peaceful sit ins continued in most of the major cities in southern Iraq as well. Closing the Basra protest sites is the first real victory for the government since the start of the unrest in October. Um Qasr port was shut down and costing the country millions, while Basra is Iraq’s second city. That was followed by pushing the demonstrators out of parts of central Baghdad. These appeared to be the first steps in an effort by Prime Minister Abdul Mahdi to put an end to the protests using force. If this is the start of a crackdown it will be a bloody affair. Already 319 have been killed, although that figure does include a few members of the security forces. With the support of Iran, Hadi Amiri’s Fatah list, and the Kurds, Prime Minister Abdul Mahdi has dug in and refused to resign. Instead he is offering meaningless reforms like changing his cabinet and setting up a committee to amend the constitution, something that will never happen. If violence is the government’s last resort, it will make a mockery of Iraq’s democracy, and will not stop people’s anger at the political system. People will eventually return to the streets as they have for the last eight years. By ignoring this discontent the elite have created a revolutionary situation, that could either lead to their demise or a more formal oligarchic rule.

News On Kidnapped Iraq Activists

Activist Sabi al-Mahdawi was released after being kidnapped in Baghdad (Twitter) There was good and bad news about kidnapped Iraqi pr...