Friday, January 17, 2020

US and Iraq Disagree Over Restarting Anti-IS Operations

US and Iraqi soldiers (US Army National Guard)


The New York Times reported that the U.S. military restarted working with the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) against the Islamic State on January 15. This collaboration had been suspended for ten days after Washington killed Iranian Revolutionary Guards Quds Force commander General Qasim Suleimani and deputy head of Hashd Commission Abu Muhandis. The Times said it didn’t know whether the Iraqi government had approved such operations. Retired Prime Minister Abdul Mahdi’s military spokesman General Abdul Karim Khalaf was quick to point out that Baghdad had not okayed the ISF working with the U.S. led Coalition again. Premier Abdul Mahdi is attempting to stay in office based upon his demand that the American forces leave Iraq. The Iraqi political class is as divided as ever and usually take months to agree upon a new PM. Some factions have therefore decided that it is easier to skip this entire process and simply put Abdul Mahdi back in office. He therefore has to maintain his opposition to the Americans, which is why his spokesman said there is no authorization for the Coalition to resume its work in Iraq.

This Day In Iraqi History - Jan 17


1974 Bakr govt held talks with Mustafa Barzani and KDP
(Musings On Iraq book review of The Kurds, A Modern History)
(Musings On Iraq book review Kurds of Iraq, Tragedy and Hope)
1987 Iraq conducted missile and air strikes on Tehran and other major cities 3rd War of the Cities
Iran-Iraq War
1987 Iran attacked Diyala but repulsed Lost 2 brigades
(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 The Iran-Iraq War Volume 4: The Forgotten Fronts)
1988 Mahdi Hakim killed in Sudan by Iraqi intelligence
1989 US report said Iraq was working on typhoid cholera anthrax for its chemical weapons program
(Musings On Iraq article on the origins of Iraq’s WMD programs)
1990 Iraq ended foreign travel ban for citizens
1990 Bush admin signed directive for normalized relations with Iraq
1991 Saddam told advisers time to fire missiles at Israel to see whether it would fight Iraq would
then alternate between hitting Israel and Saudis Iraq fired missiles at Haifa and Tel Aviv
1993 US fired 45 Tomahawk missiles at Baghdad for not allowing UN inspectors into country
(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)
1998 Anniversary of Gulf War Saddam said Iraq met all obligations of UN Res 687 Threatened to raise 1 mil
for jihad against UN if sanctions not lifted in 6 months
2002 Gen Franks briefed his commanders at CENTCOM on initial Iraq war plans for 1st time
(Musings On Iraq book review of Shaping the Plan for Operation Iraqi Freedom, The Role of Military Intelligence Assessment)
(Musings On Iraq book review Leap of Faith, Hubris Negligence, and America’s Greatest Foreign Policy
Tragedy)
2003 Pentagon memo said no decision on postwar govt in Iraq Said would be a military administration
transitional authority elections leading to an Iraqi govt Didn’t match Pentagon plans to quickly withdraw US troops
2003 CIA report said Iraq had rebuilt its nuclear program Said were reports Iraq tried to buy
uranium from Africa
(Musings On Iraq article on how poor US intel work led to claim Iraq rebuilt its nuclear weapons program)
2003 CIA told Joint Chiefs of Staff that it had some reports that Iraq tried to buy uranium from
Africa
(Musings On Iraq article on Iraq-Niger uranium story)
2003 PM Blair agreed to 1 UK division and 3 combat brigades for Iraq War to be deployed in south
2003 UN inspectors after 4 inspections said Fallujah II chlorine plant inoperative US claimed it
was producing WMD
(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)
2007 PM Maliki claimed if ISF were better armed US forces could start withdrawing in 3-6 months
Claimed he launched operation to clear Karbala of militiamen and arrested 400 Mahdi Army members Was not true
2007 Mayor of Sadr City Daraji had 1st of 2 meetings with UK Gen Lamb on working out understanding
with militias to prevent confrontations in district Militias were afraid of major US operation in Sadr City as part of Surge Sadrists backed Daraji’s effort
2007 UK Intel report Sectarian violence increased in last 6 months Attacks on Coalition reaching new
high PM Maliki govt had no security strategy was uncoordinated problem with rivalries endemic corrupation lacked capable bureaucracy
2008 UN envoy to Iraq said country only had 6 months to turn security improvement into reconciliation
Said too much distrust within govt
2008 US military reported 75% of Baghdad secured up from 8% in Feb 07
2010 Chemical Ali sentenced to death for Halabja attack
2011 Protesters cut Kirkuk-Baghdad highway Set tires on fire Blocked all traffic over lack of electricity in
Kirkuk Kirkuk governor was diverting power from a local power plant from Baghdad to Kirkuk
(Musings On Iraq article on power problems in Kirkuk) 

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Review Losing Iraq, Inside The Post War Reconstruction Fiasco


Phillips, David, Losing Iraq, Inside The Post War Reconstruction Fiasco, Westview Press, 2005

Losing Iraq, Inside the Post War Reconstruction Fiasco by former State Department official David Phillips argues that the United States failed in Iraq. Phillips was involved with the Future of Iraq Project, which brought together Iraqi opposition figures to plan for a post-Saddam Iraq. He adds important information about what the State Department was doing before the 2003 invasion, which has largely been overlooked for the activities of the Pentagon, the CIA, and the White House. Phillips believes that Washington didn’t plan for postwar Iraq, and made things worse during the occupation.

This Day In Iraqi History - Jan 16


1943 Iraq declared war on Axis
(Musings On Iraq book review of Persian Gulf Command, A History of the Second World War In Iran and Iraq)
1948 Communists led protests against new Anglo-Iraq Treaty Fired upon by police 4 killed Led to
large sectors of country to turn against treaty
(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)
1981 UN Envoy Palme visited Iran and Iraq to try to negotiate ceasefire in war
1987 Iran seized Bovarian Island Basra and caused 3000 Iraqi casualties
(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 3: Iraq’s Triumph)
1991 Operation Desert Storm-Gulf War started to expel Iraq from Kuwait Coalition began air
campaign against Iraq
(Musings On Iraq book review from storm to Freedom, America’s Long War with Iraq)
1995 UN asked Iran to relocate 4,000 Shiite refugees away from border which Iraq had claimed was
being used for base for attacks
1997 During peace talks PUK and KDP agreed to stop displacing rivals from towns and allow
displaced to return home
(Musings On Iraq book review of The Kurds, A Modern History)
2003 UN inspectors found 12 missile warheads that could carry WMD not included in Iraq’s 2002
weapons declaration
(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)
2003 PM Blair told cabinet 2nd UN resolution was not necessary for military action against Iraq even
though he was told it was
(Musings On Iraq Book Review The Report of the Iraq Inquiry, Executive Summary)
2003 Future ORHA head Garner met with Sec Def Rumsfeld and UnderSecDef Feith Rumsfeld said no
coordination on postwar planning and Garner had to work that out Garner said in WWII US spent years planning for postwar and he was only given a few weeks for Iraq
(Musings On Iraq book review Iraq and Back, Inside The War To Win The Peace)
(Musings On Iraq article on Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction Hard Lessons Chapter 3 The Department of Defense Takes Charge)
(Musings On Iraq book review Leap of Faith, Hubris Negligence, and America’s Greatest Foreign Policy
Tragedy)
(Musings On Iraq Only 3 of 13 Reconstruction Contracts Were Signed Before War)
2003 CIA received docs claiming Iraq-Niger uranium deal Sent to State Dept to be translated
Turned out to be fakes
(Musings On Iraq article on Iraq-Niger uranium story)
2003 UnderSecDef Feith memo to Sec Def Rumsfeld said Iraq-Syria pipeline should be kept open after
invasion to see whether Syria would cooperate with US
2004 US military spokesman Gen Kimmit talked about allegations and investigations into Abu
Ghraib prison abuse
2004 30,000 Protested in Basra against U.S. installing an unelected provincial govt
2004 Report Shiite religious leaders on Iraqi Governing Council wanted to end Saddam family laws
that protected women’s rights and replace them with Sharia based ones Women protested move
(Musings On Iraq Iraqi Women Before And After The 2003 Invasion Interview With Prof Nadje Al-Ali Univ of London)
2006 Sheikh Fahadawi of Albu Fahd in Ramadi assassinated by Al Qaeda in Iraq for talking with US
(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 Bush said that his Iraq policy was heading for slow failure and that’s why he chose new
policy with Surge
2012 Baghdad complained to Turkey’s ambassador about Ankara accusing PM Maliki of spreading
sectarianism Turkey did same to Iraq’s ambassador to Ankara

View the Iraq History Timelines 

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Pro-Iran Hashd Continue Attacks Upon US Interests In Iraq


Pro-Iran Attacks Against US Interests In Iraq – January 2020
Date
Type of Attack
Location
Jan 4
Rockets
Jadriya, Baghdad

Rockets
Green Zone, Baghdad

Mortars
Balad Air Base, Salahaddin
Jan 5
Rockets
Green Zone, Baghdad
Jan 8
Rockets
Green Zone, Baghdad
Jan 12
Rockets
Balad Air Base, Salahaddin
Jan 14
Rockets
Camp Taji, Baghdad

On January 2 the United States killed Iranian Revolutionary Guards Quds Force commander General Qasim Suleimani and the deputy head of the Hashd Commission Abu Muhandis in Baghdad. The Iranians responded by firing ballistic missiles at the Ain Assad base in Anbar that houses U.S. forces and Irbil airport on January 7. Tehran’s Iraqi allies said they would have their day as well, which has been playing out with a constant barrage of mortars and rockets on American interests in Iraq.

This Day In Iraqi History - Jan 15


1923 UK Treasury wrote Iraq commission that Iraq too costly to administer
1929 Sir Henry Dobbs said King Faisal was like a chameleon and drove those around him mad
1935 Persia presented border dispute to League of Nations Challenged Iraq’s control of Shatt al-
Arab
1948 New Anglo-Iraqi Treaty signed British troops withdrew but Iraq tied to UK until 1973 Led to
more protests
1948 Anglo-Iraq Treaty originally included Iraq supplying weapons to Palestinians and Iraqi forces
taking over Palestine to prevent Jewish state
1981 Iraqi division in Halabja crossed into Iran and took Nosud Valley Meant to protect Kurdistan
from any Iranian attack
(Musings On Iraq book review Iran-Iraq War Volume 4: The Forgotten Fronts)
1983 Saddam went to Riyadh and got approval for oil pipeline through Saudi Arabia to diversify
            export routes during war
1987 Iraq launched 5 counterattacks at Sumar Heights Basra but failed Suffered 1500 casualties
(Musings On Iraq book review Iran-Iraq War Volume 3: Iraq’s Triumph)
1987 Saddam held meeting on Iran Op Karbala 5 Replaced commanders due to Iranian advances
1988 Iran Op Bait al-Moqaddas 2 attacked Chwarta Kurdistan
(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 The Iran-Iraq War Volume 4: The Forgotten Fronts)
1991 Bush issued NSD 54 saying US wanted immediate withdrawal of Iraq from Kuwait restore
Kuwait govt protect Americans security in Persian Gulf
1991 NSD 54 Included defending Saudi Arabia Stop Iraq from firing missiles destroy Iraq’s WMD
and command and control Destroy Republican Guard Drive Iraq from Kuwait Break will of Iraqi forces Encourage defection of Iraqi forces Weaken Iraqi public support for Saddam NSD 54 said that if Iraq used WMD, supported terrorism against U.S. or destroyed Kuwait’s oil fields Saddam should be removed
(Musings On Iraq book review from storm to Freedom, America’s Long War with Iraq)
1991 Saddam added Allah Akbar to Iraqi flag
1991 UK PM Major said Saddam might become a target of his own people
1998 After Iraq refused to cooperate again UN inspection team left Iraq
(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)
2003 CIA told White House that paper on Iraq should say Iraq tried to buy uranium from Africa
(Musings On Iraq article on Iraq-Niger uranium story)
2003 PM Blair said 2nd UN resolution not necessary for use of force against Iraq
(Musings On Iraq Book Review The Report of the Iraq Inquiry, Executive Summary)
2003 Report Sec Def Rumsfeld okayed more aggressive patrols over Iraq no fly zones and attacks on Iraq
air defense in prep for invasion
2003 Bush received 1st brief on postwar Iraq plans from NSC’s Abrams Went over humanitarian
aid Emphasized feeding public Abrams said money had to secretly be sent to aid groups that would work in Iraq because they didn’t want to be seen supporting war Said Oil for Food program would be maintained after invasion to feed public Said that 2 mil Iraqis might be displaced during invasion Plans made irrelevant when Pentagon given control of postwar Iraq
(Musings On Iraq article on Part I Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction Hard Lessons Planning for Postwar Iraq September 2001 to May 2003)
(Musings On Iraq article on Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction Hard Lessons Chapter 2 The Agencies Engage)
(Musings On Iraq book review Leap of Faith, Hubris Negligence, and America’s Greatest Foreign Policy
Tragedy)
2003 NSC officials went to military to make sure things like health centers weren’t bombed during
invasion
2003 Bush thought humanitarian aid after war very important Thought could change image of US
in Middle East
2003 Aid groups that met with USAID about postwar Iraq plans asked to meet with Pentagon
leadership Nothing happened
2004 Shiites demonstrated calling for direct elections for new Iraqi govt
2004 Report up to 100 Hezbollah fighters in Iraq helping Iranian intelligence
(Musings On Iraq article on Hezbollah presence in Iraq)
(Musings On Iraq article on Iran’s Iraq policy)
2004 Gen Craddock Def Sec Rumsfeld’s military aide and dir Joint Chiefs Adm Keating emailed summary
of CD with photos of abuse at Abu Ghraib prison
2006 UK Gen Houghton said US Iraq Cmdr Gen Casey returned from US and got backing for his plan to
transition to Iraqi control and withdraw US troops Houghton said transition to Iraqi control highlighted all the problems in the country
(Musings On Iraq article on pre-Surge US Iraq strategy)
2006 Al Qaeda in Iraq created Mujahedeen Shura Council to try to cooperate with other insurgent
groups Shura Council was in part created due to Al Qaeda’s suggestion Zarqawi include more Iraqis in his jihad
(Musings On Iraq book review The Caliphate At War, Operational Realities and Innovations of the Islamic State)
2006 Army of the Victorious joined Mujahedeen Shura Council
2006 Sheikh Fahadawi of Albu Fahd in Ramadi met with PM Jaafari Amb Khalilzad Gen Casey
Anbar Gov Alwani Convinced PM to allow Iraqi police to recruit local tribesmen
(Musings On Iraq article on Anbar Gov Alwani)
(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 US announced more than 2000 military police would work with Iraqi police in the field as
advisers during Year of the Police
(Musings On Iraq interview with Jerry Burke police and Interior Min adviser on how US failed to develop the Iraqi police)
2006 Report $18.6 bil US approved for reconstruction in 2003 would be spent by end of 2006
Foreign govts provided only fraction of what they promised Japan pledged $5 bil in reconstruction funds in 2003 Delivered less than 50% of that Saudi Arabia and Kuwait pledged $1 bil and gave less than 10% Spain England S Korea UAE Italy Canada owed more than $100 mil each for their 2003 promises for reconstruction funds
2007 Report US military worried PM Maliki named Gen Qanbar to head new Baghdad Ops
Command Was from southern Iraq and hardly known by US
2008 SecState Rice told Talabani Barzani Hashemi Mahdi that PM Maliki not problem they were
because they controlled more votes 
2014 Bodies of 14 Sunni men found in Tarmiya day after they were kidnapped by men in ISF
uniforms and vehicles
2018 2 suicide bombers central Baghdad left 143 casualties Last major mass casualty bombing in
Baghdad was Feb 2017 car bomb that left 125 casualties
(Musings On Iraq article on Baghdad bombing)


View the Iraq History Timelines

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Rumors Of Abdul Mahdi Staying On As Iraq’s PM

(Al Jazeera)

At the very end of November 2019 Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mahdi resigned from office. That led to political deadlock as the Binna bloc led by Badr’s Hadi Amiri proposed several candidates backed by Iran only to have President Barham Salah reject them fearing that they would increase popular protests against the government. Iraq’s ruling parties usually take months to agree upon a new government, so this process was only in its infancy. Iran and Abdul Mahdi had plans of their own.

US and Iraq Disagree Over Restarting Anti-IS Operations

US and Iraqi soldiers (US Army National Guard) The New York Times reported that the U.S. military restarted working with the Iraqi S...