Saturday, April 21, 2018

Review Fukuyama, Francis, America at the Crossroads, Democracy, Power, and the Neoconservative Legacy


Review Fukuyama, Francis, America at the Crossroads, Democracy, Power, and the Neoconservative Legacy, Yale University Press: New Haven and London, 2006

Neoconservatives were one of the main groups behind the 2003 invasion of Iraq providing much of the ideological justification for the war. The term was thrown around a lot in the media, yet few actually knew what it was about. For example, there was some talk about Leo Strauss and graduates from the University of Chicago where he taught, but what that meant in real terms or how it related to the Iraq war were largely left unexplained. That’s the reason why Francis Fukuyama’s America at the Crossroads, Democracy, Power, and the Neoconservative Legacy is important because it provides a short and concise summary and analysis of just what neoconservatism is and how it was connected to Iraq.

This Day In Iraqi History - Apr 21


1802 Wahabi army from Arabia sacked Karbala 2,000-5,000 killed
1917 Battle of Istabulat in Diyala started between British and Ottomans with
            the Turks being defeated
1926 Turks told British it no longer wanted Mosul just a stake in the province’s oil
(Musings On Iraq article on how Mosul province became part of Iraq)
1941 Hitler told military aid to Iraq could only be delivered by air and that would require
            stop in Syria which would need approval of Vichy France
1941 Hitler got intel of large British forces in Iraq and more arriving so was skeptical
            of providing aid to Gaylani govt
1981 Kuwait gave Iraq $2 bil interest free loan to help pay for Iran-Iraq War
1991 Iraqi govt forces began attack on southern marshes in Maysan Basra and Dhi Qar
            to root out rebels
2002 Telegraph reported Iraq supported Ansar al-Islam Al Qaeda affiliate in Kurdistan
2003 CPA created to take over running Iraq for US replacing ORHA
2003 ORHA staff and head Garner entered Baghdad Gen Franks had kept them out He
            didn’t want civilians to get in way of military
2003 Rumsfeld took advice of Gen Franks and cancelled sending 50,000 additional
            troops to Iraq from 1st Cavalry Div
2003 5,000 Sadrists protested arrest of its cleric Fartusi by U.S.
2003 NY Times article claimed Iraq had destroyed WMD right before war and moved
rest to Syria Story proved false
2003 NY Times article said Iraqi scientist told Americans Iraq had been working on
            WMD for years and led US soldiers to banned precursors
2003 Foreign Sec Straw told Blair he was skeptical evidence of Iraq’s WMD wound be
            found Thought it might be destroyed
2003 Iraqi scientist told US Iraq had destroyed WMD equipment right before invasion
            Had sent some to Syria since 90s Worked with Al Qaeda Story false
2003 2 US congressmen went to Syria and got Assad’s promise not to harbor any
            Baathists and expel those that tried to flee there
2004 Car bombs in Basra City killed more than 70
2004 CIA analyst told Congress no working relationship between Iraq and Al Qaeda
2006 United Iraqi Alliance nominated Dawa’s Nouri al-Maliki as new PM Mahmoud
            Mashadani of Accordance Front would become Speaker of Parliament
2008 Oil Minister objected to Kurds’ independent oil deals
2008 U.S .general said if Sadr didn’t hold back Mahdi Army US would fight them
2009 Sahwa in Adhamiya put “X”s on houses of displaced Shiites and told them
            not to come back
2010 State of Law said Sadr reason no new govt after elections because Sadr opposed
            to Maliki 2nd term
2011 Human Rights Watch report Govt arrested and tortured protesters in
            Baghdad and held some in secret prison at Muthanna Airport
2011 Drive by shooting on opposition radio station that supported protests in
            Sulaymaniya
2011 2 offices of Kurdistan Islamic Group attacked in Sulaymaniya
2011 Lawyers protested in Fallujah demanding US withdrawal and release of prisoners
2011 Clash in Mosul as army tried to stop demonstration
2011 Maliki told US joint chiefs head Adm Mullen ISF could handle security after
            US withdrawal
2011 5,000 Sadrists held march in Basra to commemorate formation of Mahdi Army
2013 Maliki blamed anti-govt protests for increase in violence in country
2013 Protest leader in Hawija said army had arrested 114 demonstrators after
            checkpoint was attacked and 1 soldier killed
2015 Pres Barzani and other KRG politicians complained about PKK being in Sinjar
            Claimed trying to take over district

View the Iraq History Timelines 

Friday, April 20, 2018

Iraq Delays New Round Of Auctions For Oil-Gas Fields


April 15, 2018, Iraq’s Oil Ministry was scheduled to take bids for eleven oil and gas fields along the Iranian and Kirkuk borders as well as offshore in the Persian Gulf. The Ministry was also rolling out a new contract for foreign energy companies, which they were supposed to receive two days before the auction. The new deals included linking oil prices to remuneration fees to the companies to try to mitigate against the constant ebb and flow in the international energy market. The introduction of new terms with a rushed bidding process was criticized, but 14 companies still showed interest. The Oil Ministry eventually backed down and delayed the auctions until April 25, so that it could continue changing the contracts. It likely took the advice that it was trying to push things ahead too quickly and taking more time would help all those involved.

This Day In Iraqi History – Apr 20


1921 Churchill wrote Iraq High Comm Cox that Feisal needed to be told all
British would be out of Iraq by end of year unless he gave up demands for more power
1941 Churchill told For Sec Eden that British troops landed in Iraq to establish a
            base in Basra to establish control of province
1948 Operation Hametz began with Jewish forces attacking Arab villages held by Iraqi
            volunteers in 1st Arab-Israeli War
1970 Bakr govt restored citizenship to Patriach of Assyrian community
1987 Iraq agreed to allow UN team to visit and investigate its use of chemical weapons
            in Iran-Iraq War
1988 End of last war of cities Iran-Iraq War Iraq fired 200 missiles at Iran killing
            2000 Iran fired 77 missiles at Iraq
1988 End of 3rd Anfal campaign that targeted PUK in Sulaymaniya Civilians were
            rounded up and put into camps Mass executions
(Musings On Iraq article on Anfal campaign)
1991 Bush White House didn’t think Saddam was going to be overthrown anymore
            after Gulf War
1991 SCIRI claimed it started attacks upon govt forces in southern Iraq Came after
            Shiite revolt put down
1991 Kurds went to Baghdad to hold talks with Saddam to end revolt
1991 500 Marines landed in Kurdistan to set up safe-haven for displaced Kurds
2002 Gen Franks briefed Bush on Iraq war plans Franks said he wanted to cut timeline
            by 1/3 and could start with 180,000 troops
2003 US forces arrested Sadrist cleric Fartusi leading to days of protests
2003 ORHA head Garner held meeting Said top priority was getting to Baghdad and
            establishing its presence
2003 ORHA head Garner said when staff got to Baghdad had to get Iraqi ministries
            up and running
2003 ORHA staff finally allowed to enter Iraq by US military
2003 Report US wanted long term military relationship with Iraq and use of up to 4
            bases
2003 Report Kurds expelled 2000 Arabs from Daquq, Kirkuk
2003 Apr 10-20 up to 40 people killed in Arab-Kurd violence in Kirkuk city
2003 UnderSecDef Feith cancelled State Dept plan to set up Kirkuk committee to
            return displaced set up compensation etc
2004 US forces surrounded Najaf that was under control of Mahdi Army
2006 Jaafari stepped down as Iraq’s premier under pressure from Sadr Kurds US
            Said he wouldn’t give up office until Ayatollah Sistani told him to
2007 ISI sent letter to Ansar al-Sunnah apologizing for past attacks and asking for
            unification Ansar said no
2007 Ramadi sheikhs said they would turn Awakening into political party to run in
            09 provincial elections
2007 Abu Sheibani captured by US Was deputy of network that delivered EFPs from
Iran to militias
(Musings On Iraq interview with Galen Wright of Arkenstone blog on on Iranian arms shipments to Iraqi militias) 
2008 Sadr said he gave final warning to Baghdad to stop offensive against his
            followers
2008 Report that Thar Allah head Sinawi executed in Baghdad after being
            captured in Basra during Charge of Knights
2009 Kurdish Alliance complained about Hadbba rule in Ninewa excluding them
2009 Suicide bomber in Iraqi army uniform attacked US soldiers visiting Baquba
            mayor killing 11
2011 Mass grave found in Anbar with more than 800 bodies in it Victims of
            Saddam
2011 Arab League delayed summit in Baghdad due to Iraqi govt complaints
            about crackdown in Bahrain against Shiites
2011 Independent TV station and a Kurdish poet said they were attacked by security
            forces during crackdown on protests
2011 Protest in Fallujah demanded withdrawal of ISF after man killed by army
2012 Oil Min said Exxon could continue work at West Qurna oil field despite signing
oil deal with Kurds
2012 Sadr met with KRG PM Barzani in Tehran to talk about removing Maliki
2012 Pres Barzani gave speech saying power sharing agreement after 2010 elections
            was dead due to Maliki
2012 Pres Barzani speech said that PKK would not be tolerated if continued to use
            violence
2012 Maliki called Turkey a hostile country
2013 Provincial elections held in 12 of Iraq’s 18 provinces No voting in KRG or
            Ninewa, Kirkuk and Anbar
2014 Anbar Ops Command announced offensive to retake Fallujah while Anbar
            council said no op started
2015 IS held ceremony where Ramadi sheikhs gave it baya
2015 80 Anbar sheikhs called on Abadi to provide more military aid and called
            on Hashd to help fight in province


Thursday, April 19, 2018

PM Abadi’s Nasr List Opens National Campaign With Candidates In Kurdistan


Part of Prime Minister Haidar Abadi’s election campaign is hinged upon being a nationalist leader who represents all of Iraq. As part of that stance his Nasr list has opened offices in Kurdistan and plans on running candidates there.

This Day In Iraqi History – Apr 19


1916 German commander of the Ottoman forces in Mesopotamia Gen Goltz
            died of typhoid
1920 Start of San Remo meeting with Britain France Italy and Japan Decided on split
            up of Ottoman Empire and creation of Iraq
1922 Colonial Sec Churchill said King Feisal’s demand that mandate be dropped from        Iraq impossible under League of Nations that created mandate
(Musings On Iraq article on Churchill’s views on Mesopotamia)
1941 British 20th Inf Brigade finishes its landing in Basra and 7 planes flown into
            Habaniya airbase
1969 Iraq expelled Shiites claiming they were Iranians Backed Iran dissident groups
            Claimed Khuzistan due to Shah voiding 1937 Shatt al-Arab Treaty
1981 Revolutionary Command Council member Tariq Aziz said he hoped for better
            relations with US but skeptical it would happen
1983 Baath meeting in Amara over army desertions in southern Iraq Came up with
            military operation to arrest them
1990 White House rejected limiting high-tech exports to Iraq that could be used for
            military
1990 Saddam met with Yasser Arafat and discussed retaliatory attacks upon Israel and
            US if Iraq was attacked
(Musings On Iraq article on Saddam’s motivation for threatening Israel before the Kuwait invasion)
2002 UK intel report Iraq not seen as a threat in Middle East except by Kuwait
2003 Protest in Baghdad’s Adhamiya against U.S. occupation
2003 Gen Mattis said that U.S. didn’t have enough troops to secure Iraq
2003 Turkey threatened to send troops if Kurds took over Kirkuk
2004 Marines and Fallujah leaders worked out deal for insurgents to turn over heavy
            weapons
2005 Report US intel discussed what torture techniques they could use on Iraqi
            prisoners in Aug 03 including electrocution
2006 NGO Survey found 19,548 kidnappings from Jan to April 2006
2006 KRG parliament proposed creating Natural Resource Ministry to run region’s
            oil industry
2007 ISI announced that Abu Ayub al-Masri was War Minister
2008 Sadr said he would continue to fight US and Maliki until stopped operations
            against his group
2008 ISF took Sadr stronghold in Hayaniya, Basra Fighting in Nasiriya as well
2008 Al Qaeda’s Muhajir called on Sunni Iraqis to unite behind ISI
2010 State of Law called for revote after lost to Iraqiya Charged fraud but no
irregularities found
2011 Protest in Diwaniya over better work conditions broken up by police
2011 Sulaymaniya govt banned all demonstrations in city after protests broken up
            day before
2012 Anbar councilman said province would move towards federal region
2012 ISI set off car bombs in Baghdad Kirkuk Samarra Baquba, Dibis 35 killed
            more than 100 wounded
2012 After meeting Pres Barzani Turkish officials accused Maliki of spreading
            sectarianism
2013 Checkpoint outside Hawija protest site attacked 1 soldier killed Led to stand
            off between 2 sides
2013 Hawija site was run by Naqshibandi that wanted to provoke confrontation with
            ISF to push demonstrators towards violence
2014 Head of Ninewa Operations Command accused of extorting money and arresting
            people for ransom
2014 Protest in Baghdad and other provinces for reform


Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Ziad Qatan, Allawi Govt Defense Official Wanted For Corruption Extradited By Jordan


On April 15, 2018, a former Defense Ministry official under Prime Minister Iyad Allawi was extradited by Jordan. In September 2017, a Jordanian court approved Ziad Qatan’s deportation to Iraq, and he was arrested in January 2018. He finally arrived in Baghdad in April to coincide with the 6th ministerial conference of the Arab Network for the Promotion of Integrity and Combating Corruption. Premier Haidar Abadi’s office trumpeted his detention as a sign that the government was following through with its promise to fight corruption. That is a main part of the PM’s re-election campaign. Ziad Qatan is accused of stealing up to $800 million during the Allawi period.

This Day In Iraqi History – Apr 18


1919 France and England signed Long-Berenger oil deal France got 20% of Iraqi
            oil via Turkish Petroleum Company
1919 France agreed to help build oil pipeline from Iraq to Mediterranean
1941 Britain landed 20th Infantry Brigade in Basra in response to PM Gaylani and Golden
            Square officers coup
1941 British battalion from India completed deployment to Shaiba air base in Basra
1941 PM Gaylani asked Italian Amb if Axis would give Iraq military aid against
            British and Axis air power 1st time Iraq asked for military intervention from Axis
1980 Iran said Baath at war with Islam and called on Iraqi army and people to
            overthrow Saddam
1984 Iraq escalated its attacks on tankers heading for Iran
1988 Iraq recaptured Fao Peninsula, Basra using chemical weapons
1991 Report 500-1,000 displaced Kurds were dying a day along Iraq-Turkey border
1991 Saddam agreed to UN setting up offices in Iraq to help displaced following
            Shiite and Kurdish uprisings
1991 Iraq provided first disarmament declaration to UN Was incomplete and hid
            lots of activities like nuke and WMD programs
1996 State Dept official Deutsch went to Kurdistan to try to broker ceasefire in
            PUK-KDP civil war
2002 CIA report said Iraq might have been able to make chemical weapons since
            1999
2003 Sadrists held demonstration in Sadr City to condemn U.S. and western culture
2003 Some American officials worried that Iraq had sent its WMD to other countries
            That’s why wasn’t found
2003 INC head Chalabi said he expected an interim govt to be formed soon to run most
            duties in Iraq
2003 Rumsfeld said it would take time to find Iraq’s WMD
2003 Arabs that were expelled from Daquq Kirkuk by Kurds tried to retake town but
            driven off by Kurds
2004 Bremer admitted that Iraqi forces would not be able to deal with insurgency
            on their own when sovereignty returned in June 05
2004 Spain’s new PM Zapatero announced he would withdraw 1300 troops from Iraq
2004 British report said Coalition troops and Iraqi police would soon restore law and
            order in Iraq
2006 Report CPA plan to disarm and integrate militias never funded and followed
            through with
2007 Baghdad bombings killed almost 200
2008 50 soldiers fled their posts in Sadr City rather than fight Mahdi Army
2008 Sadrist said Mahdi Army might disarm if Badr Brigade did the same
2008 Al Qaeda’s Zawahiri speech said US had been defeated in Iraq
2008 Shiekh Abu Risha complained that authorities were trying to stop his organizing
            for 09 provincial elections by shutting down offices
2008 Suicide truck bomb hit funeral for Sahwa members killing 50 in Baghdad
2009 US and British officials went to Jordan to talk with ex-Gen Hamdani to
            talk about reconciliation with former regime members
2010 U.S. and Iraqi forces killed ISI leaders Abu Masri and Abu Omar al-Baghdadi
            near Tikrit
(Musings On Iraq interview with Naval War College’s Prof Whiteside on who Abu Omar al-Baghdadi was)
2011 Parliament repealed Article 136(b) that allowed ministers to stop corruption
            investigations
2011 Anbar anti-terror police arrested 12 officers involved with insurgents Some were
            working with Syrian intelligence
2011 Protest in Mosul Baghdad other areas calling for better services Some said
            Maliki should step down
2011 Kurdish security forces moved to evict protesters from Sulaymaniya Police
            fired into crowd wounding 6, 1 died, another 90 hurt by beatings
2011 Kurdish court sentenced spokesman for Sulaymaniya protests to one month
            in jail for defaming a KRG MP
2011 Were first protests in Irbil Were beaten by police 22 wounded
2012 Oil Min Shahristani said Exxon would not start working in KRG until Baghdad
            approved contract Exxon went ahead anyway
2014 ISIS commander killed fighting Ansar al-Sunna in Rashad, Kirkuk
2014 Anbar council asked if ISF were competent enough to retake Fallujah
2014 Former Diyala governor and Mutahidun MP said militias were trying to take over
Mukhisa and force people out of town
2014 Maliki gave speech in Babil calling for majority govt after elections
2015 Khorasani Brigade pledged allegiance to Ayatollah Khamenei and said it
            followed valayat al-faqih Same time said didn’t take orders from Iran
2015 Govt claimed it fully controlled Baiji Refinery but IS still held sizeable amount
            of complex


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Security In Iraq, Apr 8-14, 2018


After a major dip in violence in the first week of April the Islamic State was back to work from April 8-14, 2018. Incidents were back to what they have been for most of the year. There was also on going fighting between Turkey and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in northern Kurdistan.

This Day In Iraqi History – Apr 17

1916 British took Beit Asia from Ottomans and pushed Turks out of Edheim
            River in Diyala
1921 UK High Comm in Iraq Sir Cox exiled Sayid Talib to Ceylon because he aspired
            to be king and opposed Feisal for position
1941 PM Gaylani asked Germany for military aid in case of war with British
1941 British naval convoy moved towards Shatt al-Arab waterway in Basra
1941 British battalion from India started arriving at Shaiba air base in Basra
1963 Iraq made initial agreement for union with Egypt
1966 Abd Rahman Arif elected president to replace his brother who died in
            helicopter crash
1983 Iran’s Op Wa al-Fajr to cut Basra-Baghdad road in Maysan failed
1983 Saddam invited Ayatollah Khomeini to Baghdad for Islamic conference to try to
            end Iran-Iraq War
1991 British intel report said Iraq had around 600 ballistic missiles left after Gulf
            War
1991 US forces began moving into Kurdistan to set up camps for displaced
1991 Germany agreed to $262 mil in humanitarian aid to Kurds
1993 During military operation against Kurds Iraqi army arrested 7,000 people
            including members of Kurdistan parliament
2001 US Dept of Energy report said didn’t have enough info to tell whether Iraq had
            restarted its nuclear program
2003 Chief UN inspector Blix cited Iraqi scientist who said Iraq had no WMD
2003 CENTCOM head Gen Abizaid said no organized military left
            in Iraq Plan was for Iraqi military to impose order after invasion
2003 CENCTOM head Gen Abizaid suggested US create 3 divisions of interim
            Iraqi army from soldiers and opposition groups
2003 US officials said 3 new Iraqi divisions needed to be formed to protect country
            after US invasion
2003 US signed deal with Bechtel to repair Iraq’s electrical grid after instead of before
            invasion
2003 ORHA head Garner got into argument with Gen Franks who didn’t want Garner
            going to Baghdad Garner said vacuum in country
2003 US forces called for people to return to work in Kirkuk City after days of unrest
            after city taken during invasion
2003 US forces captured Saddam’s half brother Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti
2004 3,000 police abandoned posts during insurgent and Sadrist uprisings
2006 Ret Gen Newbold former Director of Ops at Joint Chiefs wrote Time OpEd saying
            Iraq war unnecessary
2007 Islamic Army complained ISI was trying to take over Diyala by threats and
            killings
2007 ISI head Abu Omar Baghdadi issued message calling for unity amongst
            insurgents Said ISI would remain despite any criticism
2008 Govt said it would recruit local Shiites from Sadr City and Shula into security
            forces to try to break hold of Mahdi Army
2008 Army officer complained many of his commanders were pro-Sadr and would
            give info to Mahdi Army
2008 Sadrist spokesman said Mahdi Army wouldn’t disarm unless top clerics told
            them to
2008 Badr’s Hadi Ameri said that only Al Qaeda and Mahdi Army were fighting govt
2011 Ninewa Gov Nujafi joined anti-govt protests in Mosul and broke curfew imposed
            by Ninewa Ops Command to try to stop demonstration
2011 Around 90 injured in clashes between Kurdish security forces and protesters
            in Sulaymaniya 7 shot
2011 Sadrist MP said ISF was capable of defending country without US help and
            blamed US for all of Iraq’s problems
2012 Sadrists accused Sate of Law of trying to cancel elections so it could stay in power
            Said was why Election Comm head was arrested
2012 Maliki’s adviser on Kurdish Affairs Adel Barwari removed from post
2012 Maliki accused Kurds of smuggling oil to Iran
2013 KRG said it was ready to export oil to Turkey directly when it finished its
            pipeline
2014 IS attacked Al Qaeda saying that it was no longer leader of jihad
2014 Insurgents blew up pipeline in Baiji leading to large oil spill contaminating
            water all the way to Baghdad
2014 KDP and Gorran said they had agreement to form new government in KRG
2015 Police and councilman in Ramadi said IS had almost taken center of city IS began
            attacking Ramadi city center Albu Alwan sheikh said city could fall any time
2016 Sadrists restarted protests in Baghdad demanding new cabinet to be voted on


Monday, April 16, 2018

This Day In Iraqi History - Apr 16


1941 Britain told Iraq that troops would be landing in Basra soon under Anglo-
            Iraq Treaty
1941 PM Gaylani agreed to allow British troops landing in Basra but demanded that
they immediately set out for Palestine or Egypt
1941 German letter arrived saying it would support Iraq revolt against British
1968 Baath Nasserites and other army officials called for coalition govt return of
            parliament dismissal of PM Yahya
1969 Shah unilaterally voided 1937 treaty over Shatt al-Arab Iraq took issue to UN Iran
            refused to go to court over matter probably knowing it would lose
1969 Shah decided to give military support ot Kurds to put political pressure on Pres
            Bakr over Shatt al-Arab
1987 Iraqi planes dropped poison gas on Sheikh Wasan and Balisan villages killing
            over 100 civilians
1988 Iraq offensive to recapture Fao Peninsula Basra from Iran began Largest
            Iraq land offensive since 1986 Used nerve and mustard gas
1990 White House met to discuss limiting military equipment sales to Iraq
1991 Pres Bush said that US would set up relief camps in Kurdistan to help refugees
            after Saddam put down revolt
1991 Bush said UN sanctions on Iraq would stay until Saddam removed from power
1991 State Dept met with Iraqi opposition including Ahmed Chalabi for first time
2002 NSC meeting talked about training Iraqi exiles for help with invasion
2003 Genk Franks issued declaration to Iraqi people saying US would only be there
            temporarily
2003 Gen Franks announced that Baath Party was no more in Iraq
2003 Gen Franks ordered withdrawal order for 60-120 days for US troops to drop from
            175,000 to 30,000 by Aug 03
2003 Gen Franks told his staff that an interim Iraqi govt would be created in 30-60
            days
2003 US Central Command made official announcement that America was the authority
            in Iraq
2003 Congress appropriated $2.475 bil for rebuilding Iraq as part of Iraq Relief
            and Reconstruction Fund
2003 Report Kurds were forcing Arabs out of Kirkuk city
2003 INC’s Chalabi arrived in Baghdad and set up office in Hunting Club
2003 US forces captured Palestinian terrorist Abu Abbas Claimed proved Saddam
            backed terrorism
2003 Dep head of SCIRI Ayatollah Abdul Aziz al-Hakim returned to Iraq from Iran with
            4,000-5,000 Badr militiamen
2004 2 weeks 12,000 members of the Iraq Civil Defense Corps quit during insurgent
            offensive and Sadrist uprising
2006 Report Iranian Revolutionary Guard set up camp in Diyala to train militias
2006 CIA report Karbala police chief made deals with Sadr to attack US forces Gave
            them police IDs to get through checkpoints
2006 GAO report US worried Iraq didn’t have money or know how to run 8,000
            reconstruction projects
2006 GAO report As of June 2005 $52 mil of $200 mil completed large scale water
projects not working or below capacity due to looting lack of power trained Iraqi staff
2006 GAO report $13.5 mil Karkh sewage treatment plant in Baghdad not operating
            $32 mil garbage landfill in south Baghdad not operating after manager killed
2006 GAO report 40-60% of purified water never used in Baghdad because of
            leaks in system
2007 Sadrist ministers boycotted cabinet to protest US occupation
2008 Accordance Front announced that it would end its boycott of cabinet
2008 Integrity Committee said it was investigating corruption in arms deal with
            Serbia
2008 Around 50 Iraqi soldiers abandoned their units during fighting against Mahdi
            Army in Sadr City
2008 Maliki said $100 mil would be spent to rebuild Basra after Charge of Knights
            offensive
2008 Dep Foreign Min said Baghdad was worried about Iran’s support of Mahdi
            Amy and other militias
2008 Maliki made major concessions to Kurds agreeing to change oil law and allow
            Kurds independent oil deals Never happened
2008 Gen Petraeus told Congress that Charge of Knights was not well planned
            op by Iraqis
2010 Maliki said new government would include Allawi’s Iraqiya Iraqiya said it won so
            it should be only party trying to put together new government
2010 State of Law said it and National Alliance would soon merge into one list
2011 Fin Min investigated charges of $17 bil dinars being embezzled from Central
            Bank of Iraq Nothing comes of inquiry
2011 Iraqiya accused Baghdad Operations Command of trying to limit protests
2011 Anbar council announced deal to end arbitrary arrests in province after
            negotiations with Maliki
2011 Iraqiya threatened no confidence vote against Maliki claiming his govt was
             a failure
2011 Allawi said Iraqiya would withdraw from govt if power sharing agreement
            wasn’t impelemented by Maliki
2011 Kurdish security forces started arresting over 300 protesters in Sulaymaniya
2012 Report Maliki had shut out his adviser for Kurdish Affairs Adel Barwari
2012 Iraqiya in talks with Kurdish Alliance and members of National Coalition to
            remove Maliki
2012 State of Law said it would run on its own and not with other Shiite parties in 2013
            provincial vote
2012 Integrity committee said it voted on dismissing Baghdad’s mayor Issawi for
            wasting money on fake contracts
2012 Dep PM Mutlaq announced that 1100 prisoners would be released as concession
            by Maliki
2013 500 protested at West Qurna 2 oil field demanding jobs and benefits from
            Lukoil that ran site
2015 PM Abadi said all the pictures of Iranian Gen Suleimani in Iraq sent the wrong
            message that Iran was saving Iraq instead of Iraqis
2015 Anbar Governor Rawi called on Hashd to be sent to province to help fight IS 3000
            Hashd sent to Ramadi to help
2015 IS said to be in control of 70% of Ramadi

View the Iraq History Timelines 

Sunday, April 15, 2018

This Day In Iraqi History - Apr 15


1969 Iraq complained to Iranian ambassador that Tehran violating 1937
            agreement over navigation of Shatt al-Arab
1979 Pres Bakr welcomed new Islamic Republic in Iran and again asked for
            good relations Invited PM Bazargan to Baghdad
1980 Iraqi opposition group attempted to assassinate Information Minister
            Latif al-Jassim
1984 State Dept said that Iraq stopped using chemical weapons in Iran-Iraq War
            after U.S. warning in 83 but started again in Feb 84
1987 Iraq attacked KDP HQ in Zewa Shkan, Dohuk PUK HQs in Sergalou and
            Bergalou, Sulaymaniya with chemical weapons
1987 Iraqi chemical attacks retaliation for KDP and PUK helping Iranian offensive
            in Kurdistan
1993 Iraqi army began two week operation to attack Kurdish towns 5,000 Kurds
            displaced
2002 Rumsfeld claimed that UN inspectors in 90s were ineffective 
2002 End of deadline set by Bush for invasion plan for Iraq to be completed
2003 ORHA head Garner met 100 Iraqi leaders in Nasiriya Called for democratic and
            federal Iraq
2003 20,000 protested in Nasiriya against US
2003 US killed 7 Iraqis trying to break up demonstration in Mosul
2003 Bush reviewed US withdrawal plan that had most troops out by Sep 03
2003 Bush talked about foreign peacekeepers taking over for US troops in Iraq
2003 White House thought countries would give up opposition to Iraqi invasion and
            offer troops
2004 Joint Chiefs head Gen Myers said Sadr uprising and battle of Fallujah signs
            that US winning in Iraq
2008 US began building wall around Sadr City to cordon off areas controlled by
            Mahdi Army
2008 Breakaway Mahdi Army faction said it would not disarm in Basra
2008 Report by refugee group said govt was not taking care of displaced and militias
            filling vacuum
2009 US stopped Iraqi police from raiding Diyala prov council building and arrested
            new councilmen
2009 Head of Sinjar said district should become independent and join Kurdistan to
            protest new Hadbaa controlled Ninewa govt
2010 VP Hashemi went to Saudi Arabia to talk about forming new govt after national
            vote
2010 Iran said it wanted all parties to be included in new govt after national vote
2011 Protest in Baghdad demanding Maliki resign and prisoner release Was broken
up by police 20 protesters arrested in Baghdad and taken to secret prison at Muthanna Airport
2011 Turkmen Front said peshmerga and Asayesh not needed in Kirkuk and caused
            divisions
2012 Head of Elec Comm released after being arrested on corruption charges trumped
            up by Maliki to get rid of him
2012 Kurdish members of Ninewa council stopped from entering Mosul at army
            checkpoint
2012 Central Bank of Iraq set new rules on dollar auctions to try to stop large
            sales being manipulated by insurgents foreign countries politicians banks
2014 New security operation launched in Jurf al-Sakhr, Babil
2014 Flyers dropped over Fallujah telling people to leave due to impending security
            operation to free city Wasn't taken until 2016
2015 UN received reports that up to 700 homes had been looted and burned 200
blown up in Tikrit area after it was freed
2015 IS took control of 1/3 of Baiji Refinery
2015 Albu Ghanim tribal head called for Hashd to help fight IS in Anbar
2015 Abadi said there were 110 Iranian military advisers in Iraq
2016 Protests in 7 provinces against ethnosectarian quota system in govt

View the Iraq History Timelines 

Musings On Iraq In The News

I was quoted by Paul Iddon in "Peshmerga can play important role in securing and stabilizing Kirkuk" in Rudaw.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Review Couch, Dick, The Sheriff of Ramadi, Navy SEALs and the Winning of Anbar

Review Couch, Dick, The Sheriff of Ramadi, Navy SEALs and the Winning of Anbar, Annapolis: Naval Institute Press, 2008

In one of Bob Woodward’s Iraq books he mentioned that the U.S. Special Forces played an important, but largely unreported role in defeating the insurgency in Iraq. The Sheriff of Ramadi, Navy SEALs and the Winning of Anbar covers the deployment of this special unit to Anbar from 2005-07 when the tide against the militants turned. Unfortunately, the author couldn’t stay focused upon that topic and got lost in the details.

This Day In Iraqi History - Apr 14


1915 Ottoman campaign to try to retake Basra from British failed
1948 2nd Railway strike against Anglo-Iraq Treaty
1969 Bakr govt executed opponents in central Baghdad
1983 Iraq claimed it repulsed Iran’s Op Wa al-Fajr killing 9,800 Iranians
1983 Iraqi High Command warned Iran that had new modern weapons and would use
            them for first time in war Meant new WMD capabilities
1992 US UK France warned Iraq to stop military buildup along border with Kurdistan
1995 UN Res 986 created Oil for Food Program allowing $1 bil in Iraq oil exports
every 90 days for food and humanitarian aid
1995 Saddam initially rejected UN Res 986 thinking that inspectors would clear Iraq
            of WMD and sanctions would soon end Proved wrong
2002 Vanity Fair article talked with Iraqi defector Saadi who claimed Iraq building
WMD
2003 Pentagon said major fighting in Iraq was over Bush claimed there was some
            evidence Saddam was dead
2003 White House said Iraq had WMD that was what war was about and they would be
            found
2003 Local tribes in Najaf scattered Sadrists threatening to expel Ayatollahs Sistani,
            Hakim and Fayadh from city
2003 Association of Muslim Scholars founded by Harith Dhari
2003 1st joint patrol in Baghdad between Iraqi police and U.S. forces
2003 Final IAEA report given to UN Found no active Iraq nuclear program Niger
            docs were fakes aluminum tubes for rockets not centrifuges
(Musings On Iraq article on Iraq-Niger uranium story)
2003 Report PUK was telling Arabs to leave villages around Kirkuk city
2003 Report 40 people killed in fighting between Kurds and Baathists in Kirkuk City
2004 UN representative Brahimi outlined power of interim Iraqi govt including
positions
2004 5 bridges connecting central to southern Iraq destroyed limiting movement of US
forces
2004 Russian announced it would withdraw 800 civilian contractors from Iraq due to
            security concerns
2004 Italian security guard became first foreign hostage executed by insurgents
2006 US Amb to Iraq Khalilzad said militias were bigger problem than insurgents due
            to sectarian violence
2006 Iraqi general said militias would not put down their weapons as long as ISF
            couldn’t provide security
2008 Sadr returned to Iraq from Iran Fled to Qom during Surge fearing US would
            target him
2008 Awakening Council in Baghdad and Abu Ghraib formed political party to run in 09
            provincial elections
2008 Kurd delegation met with Maliki over peshmerga budget oil law and Kirkuk
2009 Parliamentarians picked Iyad al-Samarraie to become new speaker
2009 Was reconciliation meeting in Abu Saifan, Baghdad between Sahwa, tribes
            and Mahdi Army
2009 VP Mahdi said Sahwa had been infiltrated by ISI while Anbar Awakening was
            legitimate
2009 Army had to take over 10 checkpoints in Iskandiriya after Sahwa walked off job
            because hadn’t been paid
2009 Insurgents blew up 4 houses belonging to displaced families that had returned in
Baquba Flyers said returnees would be attacked
2010 State of Law complained about parties going to other countries to discuss
            putting together new govt
2010 Dep PM Issawi went to Iran to talk about forming new govt
2010 Pres Talabani said when Shiite parties agreed on premier Kurds would support
            them
2010 Iraq asked to buy 24 F-16 fighters from US
2010 Iranian Amb to Iraq said trade between two countries had reached $7 bil in 2009
            Was almost all Iranian imports to Iraq
2011 State of Law parliamentarians walked out of session to vote on vice presidents
            stopping election
2011 Media activist beaten by Asayesh in Kalar
2012 KRG official said there were around 700 advisers experts and general managers
            in Kurdish govt
2012 Dep PM Mutlaq said arrest warrants for Election Commission members was
            political move
2012 Pres Barzani said arrest of Election Commission head was another attempt by
            Maliki to centralize control over govt
2012 Sadr said Maliki was behind arrests of Election Commission head so that he
            could control future votes
2012 Integrity Comm reported prisons not following orders to release prisoners found
            not guilty or who had served sentences unless got payoffs
2012 Followers of Mahmoud Sarkhi held protest in Baghdad demanding release of
            their followers
2013 Maliki said he would expose politicians connected with terrorism if he was made
            to appear before parliament for questioning
2013 Maliki said provincial elections would be step to forming majority govt
2013 Were coordinated bombings in Baghdad, Babil, Dhi Qar, Salahaddin, Anbar,
            Kirkuk, Diyala and Ninewa
2013 Sulaymaniya mayor died in custody Asayesh said he hung himself His family
            claimed he was tortured
2013 Gorran leader said he was against 3rd term for Pres Barzani
2015 Haider Sesho said that his arrest by KDP was illegal That he would work with
            Peshmerga but not follow their orders
2015 New offensive to take Garma from IS in Anbar launched
2016 Maliki Allawi and Sadr MPs voted to dismiss Speaker Jabouri but didn’t have
            votes Maliki and Allawi wanted to weaken Abadi

View the Iraq History Timelines 

Friday, April 13, 2018

Iraq, One Of The Worst Intelligence Failures In US History


In the run up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq there were a few that questioned U.S. claims about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction. It was only afterward that no WMD was discovered and official inquiries were made that the true extent of this failure was known. American intelligence agencies assumed that Baghdad had restarted its nuclear and WMD programs after U.N. inspectors left in the late 1990s and by the 2000s were looking for reports to confirm their suspicions rather than basing their opinions off of what they collected.

This Day In Iraqi History - Apr 13


1915 British won Battle of Shaiba in Basra province by counterattacking and
            routing Ottoman forces
1941 UK decided to go ahead with troop deployments to Iraq
1959 Gen Qasim made cover of Time magazine
1966 Pres Arif died in helicopter crash
1987 Iran and KDP captured strategic mountains near Sulaymaniya city
1991 Pres Bush said US would send humanitarian aid to Iraq and condemned govt
            attacks on civilians but would not get more involved
1992 Sec Def Cheney said US didn’t overthrow Saddam in Gulf War because would be
            too difficult to occupy Iraq
1993 US launched cruise missile attack on Iraqi intelligence HQ in Baghdad in
            response to Iraqi attempt on fmr Pres Bush in Kuwait
1998 IAEA report to UN Iraq provided full and complete record of its nuclear program
            and shown no new activity
1999 CIA paper said 4 reports claiming Iraq offered safe haven to bin Laden Were all
            false
2003 US forces captured Tikrit
2003 Bush criticized press for reporting on looting in Iraq Blamed Saddam for postwar
            chaos
2003 Rumsfeld said US would find Iraq’s WMD when people started coming forward
            and providing intelligence about where they were hidden
2003 US forces found suspicious missile warheads that might have contained WMD
            Didn’t 
2003 Turkmen accused Kurds of killing a child Crowd called for revenge and Turkish
            intervention
2003 Turkmen Front demanded that KDP leave its headquarters in Kirkuk giving it
            eviction notice
2003 US Gen Hawkins flew into Baghdad to try to get power grid up and working
            again since it went down when city taken by US
2004 CENTCOM cmdr Gen. Abizadi said that US needed 7000-10000 more troops
            in Iraq Bush agreed to increase
2006 Gen Swannack fmr cmdr 82nd Airborne Div became 5th retired general to call
            for Rumsfeld to resign over Iraq
2007 9 insurgent groups joined together to fight ISI including Islamic Army and
            1920 Revolution Brigades
2008 Iraq signed $833 mil arms deal with Serbia with no competitive bidding didn’t
            follow anti-corruption rules and Maliki stopped audit
2008 1300 police and soldiers fired for not fighting Mahdi Army in Kut and Basra
2008 Maliki ordered cracked down on gas stations and oil distribution centers
controlled by Sadrists
2008 Cabinet approved bill that would ban political parties that had militias from
            taking part in provincial elections
2008 US National Sec Adv Hadley said Iraq had agreed to pressure Iran to stop
            arming militias
2009 Sinjar and Makhmour said they would not cooperate with Hadbaa led Ninewa
            council
2009 Maliki signed technical military cooperation deal while on visit to Russia
            Including fixing equipment and opened door to buying arms
2010 State of Law said it didn’t have any red lines with Iraqiya but said some members
            were tied to Baathists
2010 Basra announced free trade zone with Iran
2010 KRG parliament passed regional budget Gorran and Islamic Group dissented
saying that no reforms included in it
2011 ISF raided union and women’s organization to arrest protest organizers in
            Baghdad
2011 Baghdad authorities tried to ban protests in Tahrir Square
2011 Head of Oil Police Gen Ibrahim said his forces were short 12,000 officers Led to
            signing 8,000 contractors
2011 Reported split within SIIC Wanted to remove Ammar Hakim and Adel Abdul
            Mahdi and elect new leadership
2011 Protesters in Sulaymaniya refused to meet with Pres Barzani delegation Protesters
            called for Barzani PM Salah and speaker to all step down
2011 Gulf states asked Arab League to cancel summit in Baghdad due to Iraq criticizing
            crackdown in Bahrain
2012 ISI said it was responsible for March prison break in Kirkuk that freed 19
            prisoners
2012 Head of Election Commission and another member were arrested on corruption
            charges brought up by Maliki to get rid of them
2013 Sadrists in Karbala and Iraqiya in Mosul claimed ISF were being told to vote
            for State of Law in provincial elections
2014 ISIS held parade in Baiji
2015 Abadi fired 300 army officers as part of reforming ISF
2015 Maliki said Hashd had become 3rd military force in country after army and
            police and said any negative stories about them were all lies
2015 Hashd arrived at Assad base in Anbar for Albu Faraj op Would later claim they
            were not in Anbar due to Abadi and US
2015 Kataib Hezbollah and Peace Brigades said they would take part in Anbar offensive
2015 Asaib Ahl Al-Haq Hezbollah Nujaba and Badr said wouldn’t take part in Anbar
offensive because of US airstrikes
2016 Fist fight broke out in parliament over PM Abadi’s technocratic cabinet

View the Iraq History Timelines