Syria-Iran tussle over Iraq?

As the US withdrawal from Iraq become an increasingly firm prospect, the tussle is now quite predictably intensifying among the war-shattered country’s neighbors for influence over what remains of it.
One intriguing example of this is the very serious spat that erupted yesterday between largely Iranian-backed Iraqi PM, Nuri al-Maliki, and the government of Syria.
At issue are Maliki’s allegations that the extremely deadly bombings of last Wednesday were the work of Baathist networks whose leaders have been sheltered by Syria, and his demand that Syria hand them over to Iraq for trial. The Syrians deny that the wanted men, Mohammad Younis al-Ahmed and Sattam Farhan, are in their country, and point out that they have roundly condemned the bombings.
This new conflict between Baghdad and Damascus is serious– and its timing seems very surprising. Just last week, Maliki undertook a seemingly very successful and lovey-dovey visit to Damascus. He and his Syrian counterpart agreed to set up a “strategic cooperation council”. They agreed to ” establish a mechanism for high-level military dialogue” and pursue many joint economic opportunities.
And in a joint statement, they said,

    “The fraternal relationship between Syria and Iraq is characterized by strong social and pan-Arab ties, as well as common history, culture and neighboring relations of both countries.”

Well, so much for that “fraternal relationship”, eh?
What seems to have happened is that Baghdad’s relationship with Syria has gotten tangled up in the internal power struggle now going on inside the Iraqi regime over how closely it should align with Iran.
When I was in Damascus in June, several of the close-to-power people we talked with there were at pains to note two significant things about Iraq: (a) that the Syrian government considers stabilizing the regime there to be a high priority for them, and (b) that despite Damascus’s long and close strategic relationship with Iran, Syrians see their goals for Iraq as very different from, and sometimes clearly at odds with, those of Iran.
Damascus’s goal for Iraq, they said, is that Iraq should be stable, Arab, and basically secular. Iran’s goal, they allege, is that Iraq should be Shiite-dominated and basically follow Tehran’s theocratic model of governance regardless of whether this threatened the unity and stability of Iraq as a whole.
Damascus’s policy on all this is also influenced by the degree to which the Syrian government, which is basically secular and depends a lot for its internal stability on its pan-Arab credentials, feels it is getting support from other significant Arab powers, principally Saudi Arabia. When Syrian-Saudi relations are tense– as they were from 2005 until about three months ago– then the Syrian government feels less confident about risking a rupture with Tehran.
Right now, both Syria and Saudi Arabia probably feel they have a shared interest in minimizing the amount of influence Tehran can exercise over the Baghdad government– though I doubt if policymakers in either of those governments feel they can eliminate Iran’s influence completely, in the same way that Saddam Hussein was able to do, through the exercise of great internal repression, so long as he was in power…
That there is a huge internal tussle going on right now in the heart of the Iraqi regime is quite evident– though the actual line-ups and interests at work there are still extremely murky.
Last Wednesday’s bomb blast came six years to the day after the fateful August 19 bomb blast of 2003 that killed UN envoy Sergio Vieira De Mello and inaugurated a new period of considerable post-invasion political instability within the country. This year’s August 19 blast killed more than 100 people and left the finance and foreign ministry buildings pertaining to the Maliki government substantially wrecked.
Shortly after the blasts, the ethnically Kurdish Foreign Minister, Hoshyar Zebari, voiced the serious allegation that they were the work of senior security officers within (other parts of) the regime. I find Juan Cole’s logic in claiming that the bombings were aimed at the blocs/parties in control of the targeted ministries to most likely be valid.
The education ministry was also targeted, though not I think as badly hit. It is controlled by a branch of Maliki’s own Daawa Party. The finance ministry has been in the hands of ISCI (whose leader Abdel-Aziz Hakim died in Iran earlier today.) Foreign affairs has, obviously, been largely run and staffed by ethnic Kurds.
I disagree, however, with Juan’s other main conclusion: that the bombings were likely the work of former Baathists, rather than Qaeda-related networks. I also think his allegation “Iraqi Sunni Arab resistance in exile in Syria… are running terrorist cells inside Iraq”, and that these networks were connected withe August 19 bombings, is a serious one that he does nothing whatsoever to authenticate or provide a source for.
But it is, certainly, murky. And all the more so because of the political developments that have been erupting within the coalition that’s been more or less “running” Iraq since 2007, under the different forms of tutelage provided by both the US military and the Iranian theocrats.
On Monday, Raed Jarrar had this fascinating analysis of what’s been going on.
In his view, it was Maliki who took the initiative in breaking his links with what Raed calls the “gang of four”: that is, the two Kurdish parties, ISCI, and the (Sunni) Islamic Accord Party. In his view, Maliki was doing this for these reasons:

    1- Demographic cleansing: Al-Maliki is against partitioning Iraq now. The gang of 4 have been following and promoting a separatist agenda aimed at creating sectarian/ethnic/religious regions that are self governed instead of having a strong central government in Baghdad running the country. The gang of 4 have been supporting the cleansing campaigns directly and indirectly for years. Al-Maliki’s recent attempts to reverse ethnic and sectarian cleansing and remove all walls in Baghdad were faced by fierce criticism by the gang of four. Following last week’s organized attacks in Baghdad, Hoshyar Zibari (a kurdish separatist who happened to be Iraq’s minister of foreign affairs) claimed the reason behind the attacks is Al-Maliki’s plan to remove the partitioning walls!
    2- Central government vs. regional powers: Al-Maliki is now for keeping and even increasing the powers of the central government. Mainly because he’s fighting for his own position’s authorities, and because he’s catering to the Iraqi public opinion that, according to numerous polls, favors a model where the central government runs a united and sovereign nation.
    3- Ending foreign intervention(s): Al-Maliki’s support for a plan where ALL U.S. troops must leave Iraq has been against the gang of four’s interests. They realize that the U.S. is there protecting them and supporting their weak and unpopular regime, and more importantly, the US is fighting their fight against other Iraqis.

(Raed also expressed this important conclusion: “There is a lot of violence coming ahead, but this does not mean in anyway the US occupation should last for an extra day… There is nothing that the US can do to fix the situation other than leaving Iraq completely and stopping all forms of intervention in Iraq’s domestic issues.”)
The WaPo and NYT accounts of the political split inside the Baghdad regime both seem to attribute much more of the momentum for the split to the non-Maliki side than to him… But I tend to respect Raed Jarrar’s feel for intra-Iraqi politics more than I do that of any of those western journos.
And meanwhile, from Syria, came this analysis piece today from the always well-informed Sami Moubayed.
First of all, Moubayed lays out a very well argued refutation of the accusations of Syrian complicity in last week’s bombings. Then he asks,

    why blame Syria? Clearly, from the contradicting remarks of Iraqi ministers, Black Wednesday puts many top officials in very difficult positions. It proves just how weak and divided they are – exposing them before ordinary Iraqis who are furious at the rising death toll and want answers from their elected representatives.
    … Nobody in Iraq wants to know who carried out the Wednesday attacks, because reality would expose dramatic mismanagement of government office. That in turn would drown many parliamentary hopefuls in January’s elections. It therefore suits all officials to cover up for their shortcomings by blaming Syria.
    Nobody in the Iraqi government would dare blame Iran or Saudi Arabia, because of the financial and military clout these countries have in Iraq, along with their respective army of followers. Left standing is Syria, which happens to be Ba’athist and still has Iraqi fugitives on its territory.
    In recalling their ambassador from Damascus, the Iraqis will have to deal with the aftershocks in their relationship with Syria. Iraq needs the Syrians much more than Damascus needs Baghdad. Iraq needs it for economic issues related to the pumping of oil and rebuilding of the war-torn country. It needs it to mediate explosive conflicts between Sunnis, Shi’ites and Kurds, whose leaders were all one-time residents of Damascus and still have excellent relations with the Syrians.
    Iraq needs it to police the Syrian-Iraqi border, and to continue playing host to over 1 million Iraqi refugees based in Syria since 2003. Iraq needs Damascus to mediate talks between Maliki and both Ba’athists and Sunni tribes. It also needs the Syrians to legitimize the Maliki regime, or whatever succeeds it in January, in the eyes of ordinary Iraqi Sunnis who have historically looked towards Syria for shelter and support.
    When Syria decided to open an embassy in Baghdad in late 2008, this greatly legitimized Maliki in the eyes of ordinary Iraqis, who until then saw him as nothing but a sectarian clown who had nothing but animosity for the Sunni community and wanted to punish it collectively for having produced Saddam Hussein.
    It is one thing when countries like Jordan or Egypt recognize Maliki and legitimize his administration, but a completely different matter when this is done by Syria, a country that remains dominated by a strong brand of Arab nationalism that is appealing to the Iraqi street.
    In as much as the sending of an ambassador was symbolic for the Syrians, recalling him is equally symbolic, and will cause plenty of damage for the prime minister, who needs a broad constituency among Sunnis and Shi’ites in preparation for the elections.

Well, let’s see how this plays out.
I just wish we had some kind of leading body in the international community who could get the leaders of Iraq and all its neighbors into one room together and get them to agree on strict codes for non-intervention, nonviolence, and de-escalation of tensions among them.
But alas, we have no such body. After many years of systematic US downgrading of the role and efficacy of the UN, the UN is just a shadow of what it should be today. And the US itself is clearly incapable of playing a neutral, calming role like this.

28 thoughts on “Syria-Iran tussle over Iraq?

  1. Alex_no

    I don’t think your title’s at all right, Helena. It is not a case of Syria and Iran fighting over the prostrate body of fallen Iraq. It is rather the reverse, as your actual text supports, of Baghdad asserting its position positively and independently. That is what is causing the problem (the bombings) right now.
    Raed Jarrar has it about right, in my thinking. But Juan Cole is very much stuck in past stereotypes. Nothing ever gets him to shift his unchanging judgement that it’s the Ba’thists who did it. The reason that Maliki accused the Ba’thists this time around, is that it is an accusation with a nil result, no consequences. Whereas accuse the Kurds, the ones who really needed a bombing like that to destabilise Maliki, is very dangerous, could provoke outright war, which Maliki certainly doesn’t want right now.

  2. Salah

    work of Baathist networks whose leaders have been sheltered by Syria, and his demand that Syria hand them over to Iraq for trial.
    Surprisingly most the figures in Iraqi poppet regime where hosted and had long stayed in Syria during tyrant regime which never asked any think about them. Some worked as pimps in Syiada Zaynab area, some worked on issuing fact identity papers and passport most importantly fake educational degrees, as we seen from time to time that most ambassadors and Iraqi officials accused they laying of their educational credentials,
    Let go back Syria not the only place that they have oppositions or let say criminals on the their ground Iran have many like of Abu-Daria ابو درع Iraqi knew him from his unprecedented crimes to Iraqis some of them that he boiled innocent Iraqi bodies and hand over to their family, or the recent one the Zewiya Bank robbery where 8 bank guard killed and the gung of Adel Abdul Mahady when they hiding in his newspaper office in Jadriya and he involved to protect then until some flee to Iran.
    In any way these people who brought by Americans and supported who put in power with US full support time telling these are just thugs criminals they try to install law.
    That very funny set when criminal handed to apply law on the ground, off course US relaxing in background and laughing that things do progress in the way they like it.
    Any diorite relation of Iraq with its neighbours goes to the benefit of the occupier and their interst in Iraq and cover their crimes and their lies….
    For more crimes by this US installed thugs/ gangs in Iraq see these links (Arabic text)
    سرقة مصرف الزوية تتخذ منحى سياسياً بعد تأكيد تورط أحد حراس عبد المهدي
    http://www.sotaliraq.com/iraqnews.php?id=46374
    Image of the plan and the path of trucks moved to the destination places
    http://up2.up-images.com/up/uploads/images/hosting-0c89ce053b.jpg
    قاسم عطا مسكين ..لا علاقة له بما تم بثه من على تلفاز العراقية حول المجموعة او الجهة التي نفذت تفجيرات الاربعاء الاسود كما صار ذاك الاربعاء يعرف لدى الامريكان وغيرهم (بلاك ونزداي، اوبريشن رسمية ام جودي او غيرها وهكذا ) .. فعطا عبد المأمور والآمر عبد لمأموره .. وكل الخيوط تنتهي في طهران..
    Mayada Al-Skary
    http://www.kitabat.com/i59358.htm
    Mayada Alskary about Mohammad Younis al-Ahmed
    مركز المحافظه لغايات التكريم حضر هذا الاحمد اللي ذكرتيه بالامس مع عدد من المسؤلين و في وضح النهار و امام الجميع و بصوت عال قال لهم الريس يكرمكم و هذه ملفات اولادكم الذين كانوا معتقلين ، الريس اطلق سراحهم و انتم حرين باتخاذ ما يلزم من الاحكام اذا ثبت تخاذلهم سلمت الملفات الى محافظ الانبار و شكلت لجنه من الشيوخ للنظر بكل حاله على حده و تم تجريم قسم قليل بالحكم عليهم بالسجن و اطلق سراح الباقي وعلى العقل السلام محمد يونس الاحمد ليس قاتل؟
    http://www.kitabat.com/i59420.htm

  3. Salah

    Abdul Aziz al-Hakim, one of thugs dead but still 1000’nd ..
    See what they brought with them to Iraqis….
    Alex,
    past stereotypes. Nothing ever gets him to shift his unchanging judgement that it’s the Ba’thists who did it.
    Alex, you know that all Iraqi refusing the occupation, it’s is US pick name of Ba’thists, Al-Qaeda in Iraq just to make scenes and resonate with their lies, of course the thug government will take that training lessons abroad and follow their handles…

  4. Pirouz

    Alex, relatively speaking, one thing to take into consideration is the logistical difficulties posed upon the Kurds to pull off operations such as these, compared to that of Baathist elements. Also, while it is true that the Kurds are certainly jockeying over their identified interests within Iraq, they are relatively secure compared to the Baathist type elements, which have been rendered into a more desperate political mindset. We can only speculate.
    Salah, are there any prominent Iraqi-Shia political or religious figures that you do not despise? And I do not think that the Iraqi-Kurds are necessarily opposed to an allied American military presence within rapid reach of their interests.

  5. Abdelhafid Dib

    A special commitment to Senator Ted Kennedy
    Under the shock of the bad news – the death of the world figure Senator Ted Kennedy – I must apologise to Helena for breaking the rules to her blog and say something about him may be a new information to the most readers.
    In 1987 I attended a conference presented by an Algerian ex-diplomat named M’hamed Yazid was held at KASR ATHAKAFA ( CULURAL CASTLE )in Algiers.
    He said about this great pesonality when he was a student in the mid-1950’s in France and visited Algeria during his holidays and saw the the Agerian people how are suffering from french colony. When he returned back to the USA he explained the Algerian national cause to his brother sentor John Kennedy at that time and when the latter became a President he gave a great support to the Algerian independence.
    I still remember M’hamed yazid made an appeal to the Algerian leaders to invite him and acknowloge his contribution to the Algerian national cause.Unfortunately, the Algeiran naive dipolomacy turned its back to the people who loved this country.
    for tis reason, I feel sad and upset, sad because the world lost a great personatity and upset because my government didn’t make her duty to this kind of personalities.
    Hafid

  6. Alex_no

    Salah
    Alex, you know that all Iraqi refusing the occupation
    You know that I agree. This the fundamental point; even Maliki agrees.
    Pirouz
    No, the Kurds have the logistical capacity to pull off operations. Remember that Talebani is president, and Zebari foreign minister.
    The Kurds are NOT secure. They have not secured their desired territories, Kirkuk, and the land east of Mosul. They fear the renaissance of the power of Baghdad, and a new war like in the time of Saddam.

  7. Steve Connors

    Alex, agreed on the Kurds. Their resources in Baghdad are considerable – including a strong foothold in the Interior Ministry.
    What are we to make of the ISI/AQI claim of responsibility? Does it tell us anything about the history of the last few years?
    Steve

  8. Salah

    Alex,
    Both Talabani faction and Barazani not really in love each other.
    These two parties built their power form 1991 until now, they practising more a like the tyrant acts. Some reports talking about tortures and detainees in many disclosed places, also issuing many orders to shut down the voices of Kurds journalists/ writers who are trying voices load about Kurdish parties in north Iraq, some they felled outside seeking asylum.
    It’s important to highlight the disagreement of oil matter between Kurds and central government although DNO International ASA doing their part of oil deals with both Kurd’s party leaders.
    But let be clear here Kurdish area are relatively peaceful and life as usual developments/ Investors run well in that area, but the sad thing the Iraqi/Arab are not allowed to enter Kurdish area or they need to have some sort like visa to get in!.
    In same taken, Swedish authority, also Denmark taking steps to expels Kurdish asylums refugees from their countries, on ground the danger fadeout they should returned, but there is massive objections also hunger strikes by those who listed to return, which some how give some believe things their may still not up to level of peacefulness.
    Steve Connors
    What are we to make of the ISI/AQI claim of responsibility? Does it tell us anything about the history of the last few years?
    Most Iraqi see this a fig leaf to cover up these crimes, specially the announcements came two weeks after the bombing as if some came to this scenario running let or they get tip from occupier as OBL still his voices from time to time broadcast.

  9. Titus

    What a soap opera. I do not recall neighbors in South America for example having this degree of drama and entaglement. What is wrong with these Arabistanis? Can’t they all just get along?

  10. Salah

    Helena,
    As the US withdrawal from Iraq become an increasingly firm prospect,
    If really there is believe US withdrawal, then US withdrawal from Iraq, a Nightmare?

    One Army office at [one base,] Anaconda[,] is tracking 1.2 million items of property worth $14 billion, a partial list of materiel that includes objects such as dentist’s chairs, chapel pews, swimming pool filtration systems and surveillance blimps. Separately, the Army and Air Force Exchange Service, which operates military supermarkets and shops across Iraq, holds an inventory that includes 2.7 million candy bars, 15,000 strips of beef jerky, 1.6 million cans of soda and 330,696 CDs and DVDs.

    GAO investigators found that Army logistics staff at Camp Arifjan,Kuwait, spent half their time scribbling notes on paper from one computer database and manually entering the data into another system.One result, the GAO found this spring, is that one third of all the steel shipping containers in Iraq and Afghanistan – 54,390 containers – are simply lost.

    “Some of this stuff we can sell for scrap, some equipment we’d give to the Iraqis, but at the end of the day we will move a lot of this stuff back,” said Air Force Maj. Gen. Ron Ladnier, director of the Tanker Airlift Control Center at Scott Air Force Base, Ill. Most of it will move by truck, south to Kuwait or north into Turkey for eventual shipment home. Convoys will move along Route Tampa, already jammed with 2,000 trucks a day needed for normal resupply of U.S. forces…

    Insurgent attacks, truck breakdowns, blinding sandstorms – all can combine to turn a methodical withdrawal into a snarling snafu, said Army Lt. Col. James Sears, a logistics battalion commander. He described the elegant choreography needed: tight deadlines for packing and loading trucks, inserting truck convoys into a stream of southbound traffic, coordinating the convoys with security patrol and overhead air cover, and feeding the convoys into ports and airfields in Kuwait at the precise moment when ships and aircraft are ready. “Anybody who takes six extra hours with a truck just crashes everybody else’s schedule,” he said. “The ripple effect can kill you.”

  11. Salah

    I do not think that the Iraqi-Kurds are necessarily opposed to an allied American military presence
    hummm, let presume US invade Iran, then Iran’s Kurds and Arabistan “Ahwaz” people or those Arab on “Three rocks” Abu Musa Island, the Greater and Lesser Tunbs are NOT “necessarily opposed to an allied American military”?

  12. bb

    Raed`s analysis is just plain silly. He does not seem to realise that the Sadrists have climbed back into bed with ISCI. This after years of us being told that the sadrists are nationalists and non sectarian and not lackeys of Iran like ISCI.
    Helena, if you want decent analysis of Iraqi politics go to Reidar Visser.
    AlQ in Iraq has claimed reposnibility for the bombings. Bad luck for all those who deny AlQ was
    was the main instigator of the anti shia slaughter from 03 to 07.

  13. Alex_no

    bb, I’m slightly puzzled over your remark that al-Qa’ida has claimed the Baghdad bombings. Have you a link?
    Although Steve C mentions it earlier, it’s not in the media this side of the pond, and I’ve read pretty well everything going. There’s the confession, yes, which you can discount as torture. There’s Zebari claiming it was an inside job (which is completely incompatible with al-Qa’ida). There’s Maliki accusing the Syrians
    No, Raed is not just silly; he has his appreciation as an Iraqi. But he is a blogger, not a professional, like Visser or Cole. He has a native understanding of his own country.
    He does not seem to realise that the Sadrists have climbed back into bed with ISCI.
    As Harold Wilson once famously said, a week is a long time in politics.

  14. Salah

    was the main instigator of the anti shia slaughter from 03 to 07
    It’s not just one sic slaughtered, all Iraqi affected slaughtered,go check and do your homework before putting your rhetoric
    here. The funny thing here is one coming here with total ignorance of Death Squad set up in Iraq that took three years to set.
    bb, The factual, slaughtering started in the end of 2005 early 2006 not in 2003.
    If Iraqi hate each other as per your claims they should slaughtered each other the day of lawlessness. i.e US destroyed the state in 2003 with Bremer’s singe dismantled all forces.
    Iraq opened as a wild forest for criminals/ gangs from all over the world not just Iraqi 10,000 prisoners tyrant’s freed before the bombing as some like to put the blame just on them.

  15. bb

    Alex et al
    From Kazimi/Talisman Gate:
    “The self-styled ‘Islamic State of Iraq’ that is led by Abu Omar al-Baghdadi took responsibility for the multiple terrorist attacks in Baghdad last Wednesday in a statement released today by ‘Ministry of Information’ of the ISI on the Al-Falluja jihadist forum. These attacks included the near simultaneous suicide truck bombs against the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Finance, even though that latter bombing was attributed by the Maliki government to a wing of the Ba’ath Party per a televised confession.
    The ISI called the attacks “Ghazwet [Raid] of the Prisoner” and can be read here (Arabic text).”
    Before you leap to your keyboards to denounce Kazimi as a lying persian-loving shiite neocon dog, he DOES provide a link to the ISI release, but,Alex, you have to be able to read Arabic.
    Shirin: Raed Jarrer is one of those bitter and twisted privileged educated bourgois Sunni arabs who got their noses out of joint when the overthrow of the Tyrant led to the democratic empowerment of the 80% shia majority underclass of (non kurdish)Iraq, and not to the betterment of himself.
    His reponse of course was to scuttle off to find safe haven and a more prosperous lifestyle with the Oppressors and Invaders. By his strident rhetoric you’d think he would have chosen to stay home in solidarity with his countrymen. Not Raed. His hypocricy knows no bounds and I am surprised that you are a fan? But perhaps you yourself have cause to appreciate the freedoms and lifestyle available in the U.S?
    btw …am travelling in europe, otherwise would have replied earlier.

  16. bb

    Salah: “bb, The factual, slaughtering started in the end of 2005 early 2006 not in 2003.
    If Iraqi hate each other as per your claims they should slaughtered each other the day of lawlessness. i.e US destroyed the state in 2003 with Bremer’s singe dismantled all forces.”
    Salah I am referring to the period 2003/06 when the sunni led insurgency deliberately targeted the shia population with relentless suicide bombing and ethnic cleanising, killing qnd mailing tens of thousands of them. They made no secret of this; in fact they publicly declared war on the shia and proudly claimed responsibility for every act of slqughter.
    The shiites formed militias to protect their people but their efforts were futile until the Sadrists lauched its ferocious revenge in the summer of 06, using tried and true middle east rules.
    I have never said that Iraqis hate each other. Nor do I believe that for a minute. But the Sunnis had been the ruling class of Iraq and most of the arab world for centuries, and they weren’t going to give up power even if (and probly becos) the shia underclass was the 80% majority.
    As for Bremer: no wonder you whinge all the time about him disbanding the Iraqi army. All those officers, 11000 plus, most of them sunnis, and all of then practised at keeping the shia in their places (in those mass graves.) In one stroke of a pen Bremer destroyed any chance of a Baath restoration, via a coup. That’s why they went off to run the insurgency. Sadly Salah, even that didn’t work and you’ll just have to get used to it.

  17. Salah

    bb,
    I do not know from where you got your info. If you have sources really appreciated to share them here.
    I think you do not know well what Iraq and its mosaic society. they lived thousands of years without major incidents of slaughtering between them in fact the marriage links between two Muslims sec. as high as 38%-40% so this fact bb.
    As I said, the attention of Iraqi resistance was occupation forces and those who help them like Bader militia. So you need be careful when stating things, it is not both sec. starts fighting early years of occupation (2003-2005) this fight was the toppling point when US start her new project of death squad.
    I keep saying Bremer was one of his big mistake dismantling the security forces and Iraqi army, I am not the only one, even in US they said that, most important most if not all Iraqi poppet group who worked with Bremer opposed that move, so I think I am not only voice here.
    When US invaded Japan they did not dismantled the military and police forces although they are very loyal to the regime, instead they used them…
    As for Iraqi security forces and army, they are a mix if we believe US figures that 20%, 60% and others, then that should be reflects in any society structures in the Iraq state. As most Iraqi knows, Iraqi forces and military 70% Shiite of their structure.
    Yes, top commanders are Tikirity and Saddam loyalist. The fact is neither the army nor the police forces are loyal to the regime. I say with full confidence as I was in Iraq, I served many years, been in two wars in the Iraqi military and met many people even within outer circles of Saddam security forces, after 1991 war, people hate the regime and spoken but they are working with security forces of the regime.
    I think your believes purely built on western news feed of the Iraq and Iraqi, this is why you insisting to argue this issue which much different on the ground and far from reality.
    However your believes made you not accusing the occupier did dirty acts to inflame the situation Iraq which was out of its hands in some stage till then turned around when as you said the slaughtering started which benefited the occupier.
    Finally my apologies for taking space with long post to Helena and our friends here.

  18. Alex_no

    bb
    Thanks for the link.
    he DOES provide a link to the ISI release, but,Alex, you have to be able to read Arabic.
    Why do you presume I don’t read Arabic, bb? Yes, I have read the ISI announcement, and the extensive comments, as I am sure you have done, not merely Kazimi’s citation.
    I don’t pretend to know the truth, but nothing is proven. Even Kazimi thought it was fishy. Note two problems:
    1) It is quite incompatible with the “confession” by the Sunni man from Diyala.
    2) It is late, a week late, after all the other attributions and confessions, not perhaps unusual.
    The point is not so much the lateness, but that it came out the same day as Maliki started accusing the Syrians.
    Of course, Flojaweb is an open forum, and anyone can post. Easy to compose a text with the right language, the right logos, and a couple of Qur’anic quotes.
    One can reconstruct the event in several different ways, and maybe others. 1) it is true, only late. 2) It was Maliki, who found the “confession” poorly received, and decided to place a claim in order to lead in another direction. 3) The claim was placed by other opposition groups, in order to provoke Maliki. Kurds, ISIC, etc.
    2) seems unlikely, as Maliki made a sudden turn on the 25th, probably affected by this claim. “Provoking Maliki” is probably the right answer, and it succeeded, as accusing the Syrians is crazy.
    I can discuss it more if you wish.

  19. Salah

    bb,
    Do you really knows Nibras Kazimi?
    But one thing here as a native Arabic and Iraqi speaker, “Kazimi” name sound more Iranian name than Iraqi!!!
    you can asked your Iraqi neighbours they will tell you.
    Other fact is Nibras Kazimi was the spokesperson for Ahmad Chalabi!! so do you think he abuses his handler or his hosted country?
    More to bb
    CBS Chief Foreign Correspondent in Baghdad, Lara Logan, first appeals for help in getting a key story about the battles around Haifa street put on the CBS Evening News instead of just published on the CBS News website…when it appears that part of her footage is straight from Al Qaeda.
    some of the film in Logan’s piece is the exact footage that first appeared on an al Qaeda sponsored website. Yet during the CBS piece they claim is is just “footage obtained by CBS” and they do not mention its original appearance on the al Qaeda site.

    ???

  20. Alex_no

    Salah, Nibras al-Kazimi is an Iraqi, very anti-Sunni, and a member of the Iraq National Congress. He wrote an academic article, explaining why the al-Qa’ida idea of the Caliphate was stupid and had failed. He has since found a niche in the Hudson Institute.
    Doesn’t that say it all? Even he found the al-Qa’ida claim doubtful (look in the comments).

  21. Salah

    Alex
    Salah, Nibras al-Kazimi is an Iraqi, very anti-Sunni, and a member of the Iraq National Congress.
    Thanks Alex, I respect your words, but when some saying I am Iraqi in words should be translated as genuine Iraqi who works for Iraq and for the Iraqi nation.
    Alex, I really wish have a private talk with you to discuss more about Iraq…may be one day.

  22. bb

    Salah, I did indicate in my post that it goes without saying Kazimi is a lying, persian-loving shiite neo con dog. But he did provide a link, so he backed up what he was saying. Nevertheless Alex seems to think that any old person gets to post on jihadi websites. So that explains it. Must say I always thought the jihadis were cleverer than that, but there you go.
    btw Salah, are you yourself a resident of the Invader/Oppressor or one of their lackey arab allies?

  23. Salah

    the Invader/Oppressor or one of their lackey arab allies?
    Do you think there are differences for Arab citizens with long Oppressors in most Arab stats?

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