Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Cost Of Rebuilding Iraq

Now that the conventional war against the Islamic State is coming to an end the government has to deal with reconstruction. Estimates for rebuilding Anbar, Ninewa and Diyala stand at $60 billion. Half of that is just for Mosul with 70% of the west side destroyed. In Anbar, the deputy governor told Al Mada that 100,000 houses were damaged in the province along with 80% of the hospitals in Ramadi, Fallujah and Qaim and 90% of the bridges were knocked out. Back in the summer, the Planning Ministry thought total reconstruction in the country could stand at $100 billion. The authorities are facing two dilemmas: one where is the money going to come from, and how are they going to use it.

Musings On Iraq In The News

I was quoted in "Clouds form over Kurdistan as experts forecast more fighting with Baghdad" in Al Araby.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 21

1914 British troops entered Basra after Ottomans abandoned city
1926 Jaffar al-Askari became PM of Iraq for 2nd time
1946 PM Umari forced to resign in aftermath of Kirkuk Massacre where oil strikers killed
1946 Nuri al-Said became premier 4th time
1983 Iran’s Op Wa al-Fajr 4 ended taking a few miles of territory in Kurdistan
1997 UN weapons inspectors returned to Iraq
2001 Bush told Natl Sec Adv Rice he wanted Rumsfeld to start planning for Iraq
2001 Bush told Rumsfeld to update war plans for Iraq Wanted it done secretly
2002 NATO summit Bush was talking about war with Iraq and using new U.N.
            inspections as catalyst for action
2003 UN turned over Oil for Food program to CPA
2003 UK intel report Badr Brigade maintained close ties to Iran that armed and funded it
2004 Iraq Election Commission announced vote for transitional assembly to draft
            constitution would happen 1/30/05 along with provincial vote
2006 Iraq and Syria announce renewal of diplomatic relations which were broken
            during Iran-Iraq War

Monday, November 20, 2017

This Day In Iraqi History - Nov 20

1914 Arab tribes told British forces Ottomans had abandoned Basra British
            forces set out to take city
1920 US complained 3rd time to UK about San Remo agreement that divided up Iraqi oil
            between France and England
1922 Abd Sadoun became Iraq’s 2nd PM His orders were to organize elections for an
            assembly to write constitution
1963 Tahir Yahya became premier, held office 2 times
1982 Tariq Aziz accused US and Soviet Union of allowing weapons to be sent to
            Iran during Iran-Iraq War
1997 Russia brokered deal to allow US members of UN inspectors back into Iraq
2001 US Embassy in Niger said that Niger official said no way it could produce
            enough uranium reports claimed Iraq bought from it
2003 Suicide truck bomb hit PUK office in Kirkuk killing 5
2005 Report on how US relied upon Iraqi defector CURVEBALL for intel on Iraq’s
            WMD when they were warned he was unreliable
2006 Joint Chiefs told to prepare plan for surge in troops in Iraq 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Battle Of Mosul Casualties Updated

There were recently two reports released in November 2017, which proved that there were still many unaccounted for casualties from the Mosul campaign. First, the United Nations released a study on the battle that included over 1,000 dead and wounded not reported before. Than the New York Times did an in depth study of Coalition air strikes during the Mosul operation, which found that there were many more incidents of civilian deaths than the Coalition acknowledged, and that it was using a flawed system to assess whether it caused any casualties.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 19

1914 British troops took Ottoman fort at Sahil in the city of Basra
1991 UN report said Iraqi forces used torture and mass killings to put down Shiite uprising after
            Gulf War
1999 UN Res 1275 extended Oil for Food program for Iraq during sanctions
2002 UK Def Min official warned Blair’s office that without proper postwar planning Iraq war
            could fail
2003 Car bomb at Sheikh Suleiman’s home after he made deal with US for police to take over
           security in Ramadi
2004 Assoc of Muslim Scholars announced Sunni boycott of Jan 05 elections claiming results
            would be fake and non-representative
2004 US Gen Smith dep cmdr CENTCOM said insurgents were carrying out effective intimidation
            campaign before Jan 05 elections
2005 Marines killed 24 civilians in revenge for Marine being killed by IED in Haditha
2006 Dep Health Min Saffar kidnapped by policeman Mahdi Army suspected of killing him under
            orders of Dep Health Min Zamili
2008 PUK politburo created committees to discuss its internal divisions

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Rawa, Last Iraqi Territory Liberated From Islamic State

The Iraqi forces freed the last section of Iraqi territory held by the Islamic State. That happened as Rawa in western Anbar was liberated in just a matter of hours. There are still some lawless areas of the country where IS operates in, but Rawa was the last actual city it controlled marking a major turning point.  
(Institute for the Study of War)

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 18

1914 British launched second attack on Ottoman forces in Zain, Basra
1963 Pres Arif removed Baathists from positions in govt including PM Bakr
1963 Pres Arif and brother Gen Arif and army put down Baath National Guard
            militia in Baghdad Mosul and Kirkuk
1968 KDP called on UN to intervene in Iraq during Kurdish revolt
1979 Naji Suwaidi became premier of Iraq
1997 KDP recaptured lost territory from PUK
1997 UN told that dramatic increase in Iraqi oil smuggling through Iran violating
            UN sanctions
1997 Wash Post OpEd by Wolfowitz and Khalilzad called for US to overthrow Saddam
2002 New UN inspectors arrived in Baghdad
2005 House Republicans attacked Democrats for trying to cut and run in Iraq by
            backing withdrawal US policy was withdrawal
2005 Al Qaeda in Iraq bombed Shiite mosque in Khanaqin Diyala 74 dead
2005 Study 90-96% of insurgency were Iraqis only 4-10% foreign fighters
2006 Pentagon and Joint Chiefs papers on Iraq said US should follow Gen Casey plan to
            withdraw turn things over to Iraqis
2006 Joint Chiefs paper on Iraq said Iraq falling into civil war US strategy not working
2006 US intel report on Iraq said US had no good options in Iraq
2006 VP Cheney’s office memo on Iraq said US should back Shiites and Kurds and
            forget about Sunnis
2008 US signed Status of Forces Agreement with Iraq that set 12/31/11 withdrawal
            date for US forces

Friday, November 17, 2017

This Day In Iraqi History - Nov 17

1975 France-Iraq agreement to build nuclear facility
1980 Iraq’s Susangard offensive failed after 3 days
1982 Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim announced Supreme Assembly of the Islamic
            Revolution in Iraq formed in Iran
1993 Iran reported 60,000 Iraqi refugees entered country after Saddam drained southern
2001 Wolfowitz wrote Rumsfeld that if any evidence found of Iraq involvement in
            9/11 US should act
2005 Congressman Murtha introduced resolution to withdraw US troops from Iraq
            saying war going badly
2005 Head of central criminal court in Baghdad Samarrie said special Inter Min forces
            didn't need arrest warrants or file court papers to detain people
2006 State Dept memo suggested US should pull back from Iraq and have same
            relationship as all other states
2006 State Dept memo argued against a surge in troops in Iraq to help quell violence
2015 VP Nujafi filed lawsuit to remain in office after Abadi dismissed vice presidents
2015 3 dozen protesters in Baghdad taken away by police Some beaten

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Security In Iraq, Nov 8-14, 2017

The greatly improved security environment continued for another week in Iraq. From Nov 8-14, there were less than 100 incidents, but the number of dead was very high due to another mass grave being discovered.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 16

1914 British forces attacked Ottomans in Zain, Basra
1918 UK commissioner for Iraq Arnold Wilson wrote that Iraqis were happy with British
1922 PM Gaylani’s second govt resigned
1930 Iraqi parliament ratified new Anglo-Iraq treaty ending British mandate but
            maintained British influence
1961 Mustafa Barzani asked for UN aid to Kurds
1980 Iraq sent letter to the Iran saying Baghdad was still following 1975 Algiers
            Accord on Shatt al-Arab and Tehran was violating it 
2004 Major fighting in 2nd Battle of Fallujah said to be over
2005 Cheney said people that claimed US lied about causes of Iraq war undermined the troops
2005 White House rebutted NYTimes editorial that questioned pre-war WMD argument
            for Iraq war
2005 Sunni MP Falluji accused Iraqi forces of carrying out sectarian extra judicial killings
2006 Rumsfeld asked Gen Casey what was going on with National Police Casey
            said training was doing good but not their performance
2014 IS posted video of execution of American aid worker Peter Kassig

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Ninewa Politicians Settling Scores Rather Than Governing & Rebuilding

As soon as Mosul was liberated in July 2017, the Ninewa council moved against Governor Nufal Hamadi al-Akub. It took four months, but Akub was eventually removed from office. Similar situations have played out in other provinces that were once occupied by the Islamic State where politicians have decided to settle their scores after liberation. The problem is that these local officials should be restoring governance and rebuilding Ninewa, but instead are vying for power.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 15

1914 British troops began attack on Ottomans in Basra City
1924 Frontier Commission started demarcating border between Iraq and new nation of Turkey
1971 Baath issued Charter for National Action to try to draw Communists into govt
1986 Saddam told aides US wanted to keep Iraq and Iran balanced Was reason why US
            sold weapons to Iran in Iran-Contra scandal
2000 UK Foreign Office report Saddam felt like he was winning in breaking down sanctions
2001 Powell told Blair that after Afghanistan Right in US would push for bombing Iraq
2002 US asked UK and other allies for military support against Iraq
2002 Saudi Amb to US Bandar visited Bush Said Saudis wanted to know US intentions on Iraq
2002 Bush told Saudi Amb Bandar he would tell Saudis if he decided on war with Iraq
2003 CPA and Iraqi Governing Council agreed to return sovereignty to Iraq early by July 1 2004
2003 Pentagon claimed UnderSecDef Feith’s intel unit on Iraq-Al Qaeda ties was
            authorized by intel community but it wasn’t
2004 Heavy gun battles break out in Baquba Diyala between insurgents and US forces
2005 PM Jaafari admitted that prisoners found by US forces at secret prison in Baghdad were
2005 Interior Min Gen Kamal claimed abuse done by inexperienced police and would lead
            to reform within ministry
2005 Secret prison was actually one of many run by Badr Interior Min forces throughout
2005 28 Sunni men found shot in head in Jasan Diyala near Iranian border
2006 Amb Khalilzad said Maliki should be given more control over Iraqi forces and
            US should push him towards reconciliation
2006 White House staff began first day of Iraq strategy review
2007 Maliki said referendum on Kirkuk’s future would be held on this date Didn’t happen

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Iraq’s Dilemma What To Do With Kirkuk’s Oil?

The Iraqi federal government recently asserted control over Kirkuk province, which had been run by the Kurds since 2003. That included taking several oil fields such as Bai Hassan and Avana that the Peshmerga seized in 2014 when they were abandoned by the North Oil Company in the face of the advancing Islamic State. Prime Minister Haidar Abadi now wants to diversify the outlets for the province’s petroleum, and has the Oil Ministry exploring several options.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 14

1963 Baath Sec Gen Sadi said 8 Baathist leaders had been ousted and that he was returning to
            Baghdad with Syrian Baathists
1980 Iraq offensive to take Susangard, Iran started
1991 Kurds announced tentative deal with Saddam to end blockade of Kurdistan in return for
            Peshmerga withdrawing from cities
1998 Iraq agreed to work with weapons inspectors after US threatened attack
2001 Def Policy Board head Perle speech at For Policy Research Institute Said Iraq behind 9/11
            and should be attacked
2001 Cheney said he knew 9/11 hijacker Atta met with Iraq intelligence in Prague in 2001
2002 UK For Sec Straw told cabinet UN Resolution 1441 authorized military action against Iraq
            without a 2nd resolution
2002 UK intel report said Iraq accepted new weapons inspectors to avoid US led attack
            and would continue to hide its most important WMD programs
2003 Japan decided to hold off deploying troops to Iraq due to rising violence
2003 South Korea ordered its 464 troops in southern Iraq to suspend operations due to rising
2003 Denmark rejected call to send 100 more troops to Iraq due to rising violence
2003 US army intel report said insurgency successfully preventing CPA from providing
            safe and secure Iraq
2003 US army intel report said US failing in Iraq because relying upon conventional
            military tactics and didn’t understand Iraqi culture
2003 US army intel report said insurgents were targeting tribal structure in Iraq while
            US ignoring it
2004 Insurgents kidnapped wounded police from Mosul hospital and dismembered
            them Led to ½ of city’s police to quit
2004 Iraqi police commandos sent into Mosul to recapture police stations after all
            but one fell to insurgents in city
2004 Report UN official Sevan accused of getting kickbacks from Iraq under Oil for
            Food Program Told his staff not to investigate corruption
2005 Pentagon’s Insp Gen announced investigation into Pentagon intel unit on Iraq-
            Al Qaeda ties to see whether it did anything illegal
2006 National Police arrested 159 people from Higher Educ Min in Baghdad who were
            never seen again presumed killed
2013 US Natl Counterterrorism Center testified to Congress that ISIS was strongest since
            its peak in 2006

Monday, November 13, 2017

Human Cost Of The Mosul Campaign

The Mosul campaign, which lasted from October 2016 to July 2017 was the largest and most important battle against the Islamic State in Iraq. The fighting was some of the most intense the world had seen in decades, and broke the back of the militants as a conventional force that held territory in the country. The human toll was tremendous as well, and likely never to be fully accounted for due to Iraqi government censorship on casualties. Based upon daily media coverage from over 40 sources, along with human rights and United Nations reports a rough total can be estimated.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 13

1929 PM Sadoun shot himself due to criticism he faced over his performance
1963 Baath National Guard commander Wandawi began bombing Rasheed Camp
            while Guard rampaged through Baghdad
1963 Baath Sec Gen Sadi said party run by new 15 member council headed by Bakr
1981 UN Resolution 36/27 again criticized Israel’s destruction of Osirak nuclear
            reactor and said Israel should pay for damages
1982 Saddam ran informal referendum backed by pro-Saddam marches
1986 Rev Command Council meeting believed Israel was behind Reagan selling
            weapons to Iran in Iran-Contra scandal
1991 Saddam replaced Interior Minister Ali Hassan al-Majid with Wathban
            Ibrahim Hassan
1997 Iraq expelled US members of UN weapons inspectors accusing them of being spies
2002 Iraq accepted UN Resolution 1441 to allow UN weapons inspectors
2002 Blair said that goal of resolution was disarming Iraq not regime change
2002 Blair told UK cabinet that 1441 meant military action could be taken against
            Iraq in case of violations without a 2nd resolution
2003 US forces launched Op Iron Hammer to hunt down insurgents in Baghdad
2005 US forces found 173 prisoners in secret prison in Baghdad run by Badr unit of
Interior Ministry Prisoners were tortured
2005 18 Sunni men found handcuffed blindfolded and shot in Baghdad
2006 Bush met Iraq Study Group Said Iraq part of ideological struggle in world
            Said US needed to back Maliki
2006 Iraq Study Group didn’t think Bush knew what victory in Iraq meant besides
2006 Iraq Study Group met with US Cmdr Iraq Gen Casey who said Iraqis had to
            eventually take control of own affairs
2006 US Iraq Cmdr Gen Casey told Iraq Study Group that sectarian violence
            problem in Iraq but Maliki only talked about Baathists
2006 Iraq Study Group met CIA Dir Hayden who said Maliki govt only talked about
            Baathists not sectarian violence
2006 CIA Dir Hayden told Iraq Study Group stable and democratic Iraq may not be
2013 Fallujah’s mayor killed by a sniper

Sunday, November 12, 2017

This Day In Iraqi History - Nov 12

1914 British forces in Fao launched reconnaissance in force near Salhan, Basra
1927 Kurdish MP Rowanduzi said Shiites and Kurds both opposed govt conscription
1963 Baath founder Aflaq went to Iraq to solve internal Baath dispute Led to removal of
most leaders of 63 coup and rise of Arif within military
1968 68 coup member Nasir al-Hani special adv to Pres Bakr assassinated
1997 UN Resolution 1137 demanded Iraq allow full and unhindered weapons inspections
1997 Wall St Journal OpEd by David Wurmser called for US supporting INC and revolt in Iraq
1998 Iraq Amb to UN told military strike impending if did not agree to work with
            weapons inspectors again
2001 INC presented Iraqi defector Lami who claimed Iraq training terrorists at Salman
            Pak and had anthrax
2002 CENTCOM Cmdr Gen Franks said if US didn't act on Iraq it could acquire and
            use a nuclear weapon
2002 Lord Goldsmith told Foreign Sec Straw that he wasn't sure UN Resolution 1441
            would give legal basis for war with Iraq
2002 Straw told Goldsmith he thought 1441 meant Iraq had to comply or else
2002 NYTimes article claimed Iraq bought anti-WMD drugs as sign that it had WMD
            and was going to use it
2003 Zarqawi bombed Italian police in Nasiriyah killing 19 Italians 15 civilians and
wounding around 100
2003 Bush decided US should turn over sovereignty to Iraq early against CPA plan
2004 Marines attacked southern Fallujah 2nd Battle of Fallujah
2004 Sec of State Powell told Bush and Blair weren’t enough ground forces in Iraq
            to secure country
2005 US Iraq Cmdr Gen Casey told Rumsfeld Iraq might take 9-13 yrs

 View the Iraq History Timeline

Saturday, November 11, 2017

This Day In Iraqi History - Nov 11

1914 Battle of Basra began when Ottomans attacked and were turned back by British troops
1920 League of Nations announced British mandate over Iraq
1920 Abd al-Rahman al-Gaylani became Iraq’s 1st prime minister
1963 Baath election put moderates in control and Sec Gen Ali Sadi was exiled to Spain
1982 Iran ended Op Muharram after failing to gain much territory in Iraq’s Maysan province
1987 Arab League meeting condemned Iran for not ending Iran-Iraq War
1991 UN Resolution 715 said that Iraq had to unconditionally cooperate with weapons inspectors
1998 UN Secretary Gen Annan appealed to Saddam to work with weapons inspectors again
2001 London Observer quoted INC defector that Iraq trained terrorists at Salman Pak to hijack 
           planes like 9/11
2003 US Cmdr in Iraq Gen Sanchez said US would be more aggressive fighting insurgency
2003 Bush said Iraq and war on terror were like struggle against Communism
2003 Rumsfeld said that US facing low-intensity war in Iraq
2003 Bremer called to Washington over unhappiness with his longterm plan for Iraq
            and transferring sovereignty
2003 NSC meeting CIA official said US facing insurgency in Iraq Rumsfeld said that
            was wrong word and wanted definition
2003 NSC meeting Bremer agreed with CIA official that US facing insurgency in Iraq
2003 NSC meeting Bush said he didn’t see an insurgency in press and didn’t want to
            hear about it in press
2003 NSC meeting Bush said US had to stay the course and succeed in Iraq
2003 NSC meeting DepSecSate Armitage thought Bush in denial about what was
            happening in Iraq
2003 NSC meeting Rumsfeld said Iraqis had to take things over to show them they had
            to run their own country
2003 Pentagon refuted Weekly Standard and UnderSecDef Feith claims of Iraq-
            Al Qaeda ties since 90s
2004 Insurgents attacked police stations across Ramadi causing collapse of force
2004 Zarqawi arrived in Ramadi after leaving Fallujah during 2nd battle
2004 Al Qaeda in Iraq seized 14 police stations and established temporary control of Mosul
2005 Bush announced US Iraq strategy was clear hold build Didn't tell military
            beforehand and not actual policy
2005 SecState Rice arrived in Mosul to announce first US Provincial Reconstruction Team
2007 Maliki put a freeze on hiring sahwa into govt fearing insurgent infiltration
2010 New parliament had 2nd session in 5 months Elected Nujafi new speaker

 View the Iraq History Timeline

Friday, November 10, 2017

Talks Between Iraqi Central And Kurdish Regional Govt Deadlocked

Since the end of October, the Iraqi government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) have been in talks over control of the borders, disputed areas, and Kurdish government workers among other things. Initially, it appeared that the two had come to a partial agreement over some of those issues, but then Baghdad accused the Kurds of stalling. Since then there have been more disagreements over the details.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 10

1968 Baath assassinated former foreign minister Nasir Hani and arrested Western businessmen
1980 Iraq captured Khorramshahr Iran Iraqis called it “city of blood” afterward
1980 Iraq claimed Iran started Iran-Iraq War by bombing border towns in Sep 80
1980 Iraq gave up claim to break up Iran but said its right to Iranian territory would be determined
            on battlefield
1981 Iran rejected Iraqi call for a ceasefire and said it was a sign of weakness by Baghdad
1991 Saddam dismissed his son in law Gen. Hussein Kamal as Defense Minister
            and replaced him with his cousin Ali Hassan al-Majid
1982 Saddam said Iran wanted to rule Iraq not just get rid of him
1994 Iraq parliament recognized Kuwait’s border and independence
1997 Iraq said it would not allow any US planes to be used for weapons inspections
1998 All UN weapons inspectors left Iraq after Baghdad refused to cooperate anymore
2003 Bremer met Bush saying two routes for Iraq could be elections for new govt
            or CPA could hold caucuses to pick govt Bush backed CPA
2003 CIA report more Iraqis joining insurgency Said Iraqi leaders not showing
            ability to run country
2005 Al Qaeda in Iraq took responsibility for bombing 3 western hotels in Jordan
2005 Al Qeada in Iraq later realized bombings cost it support and tried to justify them
2005 Nat Sec Adv Hadley denied that White House manipulated Iraq intel before 2003
2006 Bush formally asked his staff to review Iraq strategy because not working
2007 Lions of Adhamiya Sahwa group announced in Baghdad
2010 Barzani called meeting and agreed on new govt of Maliki PM Talabani Pres Allawi
            head of new strategic council Nujafi speaker
2010 Deal for new govt called Irbil Agreement
2014 IS announces it got allegiance from groups in Egypt Libya Yemen Algeria Saudi Arabia

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Security In Iraq Nov 1-7, 2017

The vastly improved security situation in Iraq continued into the first week of November. There were few incidents and casualties. This was just another sign of the collapse and withdrawal of the Islamic State in the country.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 9

1933 Jamil al-Midfai became PM of Iraq, would hold office 5 times
1969 Revolutionary Command Council went from 5 to 15 All new members were Baathists
            Saddam become vice chairman
1982 Saddam called for referendum in Iraq and Iran to see who was more popular he or Khomeini
1989 Sec of State Baker offered Iraq $1 bil in grain credits even though knew Iraq was abusing
            program by demanding kickbacks
1990 UK intel report said Iraq had weaponized anthrax and plague and could use them at any time
1990 UK intel report on WMD was based upon single source whose reliability had not been
            established yet
2004 Marines clear Jolan neighborhood 2nd Battle of Fallujah
2004 insurgents seized 66% of Mosul’s police stations
2004 Iraqi Islamic Party withdrew from interim govt due to fighting in Fallujah
2005 Al Qaeda in Iraq bombed 3 western hotels in Jordan Led to condemnation of Zarqawi by

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

This Day In Iraqi History - Nov 8

1914 British troops after landing at Fao Peninsula captured Ottoman Fao Fort
2001 NY Times talked with 2 Iraqi defectors from INC claimed Mukhabarat trained to
attack US and produced WMD
2001 Frontline airs “Gunning for Saddam” show full of conspiracies about Iraq behind
            9/11 and should be attacked
2001 PBS interviewed Ex Iraq nuke scientist Khidhir Hamza who said Iraq behind 9/11
2001 PBS interviewed Richard Perle who said Saddam most dangerous man in world
            because he could use WMD against US
2001 PBS interviewed w/Ex-CIA Chief Woolsey who said Iraq probably behind Al Qaeda
            and 95 World Trade Center bombing
2001 PBS interviewed  author Laurie Mylroie Said Iraq behind Al Qaeda
2001 PBS interviewed 2 Iraqi defectors who said Iraq trained foreign terrorists to
            hijack planes and thus behind 9/11
2002 UN Resolution 1441 said Iraq was in violation of previous resolutions and
            authorized new weapons inspections anywhere in Iraq
2003 Red Cross withdrew most of its staff after Zarqawi bombing
2004 2 Marine regiments started attack in 2nd Battle of Fallujah clearing northern
            section of city
2004 Zarqawi believed to have fled Fallujah during 2nd battle for city
2004 Battle of Mosul began
2004 Rumsfeld said most of Iraq stable with violence only in 4 of 18 provinces
2005 Another one of Saddam’s lawyers was killed in an ambush
2006 National Security Advisor Hadley memo to Bush Maliki either lying didn't have resources
            or was not explaining his goals
2006 Bush announced Rumsfeld out as Secretary of Defense in large part because of Iraq
2009 Parliamentary election law passed expanding number of seats to 325
2012 US Treasury Dept designated Kataib Hezbollah a terrorist organization
2015 Maliki ally said that Abadi tried to see Sistani because his reforms had failed and needed 

View the Iraq History Timeline

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Turkmen Try To Blame Kurds For Destruction They Wrought In Tuz Kharmato

Some Turkmen in Salahaddin are taking offense to being blamed for the looting and destruction of Kurdish sections of Tuz Kharmato in the middle of October 2017. Recently a parliamentarian and a Hashd spokesman blamed the Kurds for some of the events. First, an MP acknowledged that over 500 mortar shells were fired in the town leading to 10 deaths and around 80 wounded, but did not say who was responsible or what led to the violence. He also admitted that 76 Kurdish homes were burned or destroyed. At the same time, he told the media there were no threats against Kurds, and then blamed the Kurdish parties, meaning the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) for encouraging people to flee and not return for political reasons. Before that Ali al-Husseini a spokesman for the Hashd al-Turkmen blamed the Kurds for not only starting the fighting, but burning homes as well. He then said that they put all the onus for the destruction on the Hashd. Finally, he believed the press was exaggerating the number of people displaced by the conflict. Instead of the 30,000 that got into the news he stated that only roughly 9,000 left the town. Tuz Kharmato is divided between Kurds and Turkmen, with the later split between Sunnis and Shiites. Since the town was liberated in 2014 many of the Shiite Turkmen threw in with the Hashd. These two obviously came from that camp. Their statements came from the fact that Iraqi and international human rights groups, and eye witnesses all blamed the Turkmen for the destruction that took place in Tuz Kharmato.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 7

1914 British troops started march from the port of Fao to the city of Basra
1968 Baath National Guard fired on Communist march killing 3
1978 Iraq and Syria announced they were working to unify their two states
1980 Iranian commandos attacked Iraqi oil export terminals at Mina al-Bakr and Fao
2002 UK Embassy in US said hawks in Washington thought UN Res 1441 was a defeat
2003 CENTCOM Cmdr Gen Abizaid told Bremer US should bring back ex-Iraq
            officers into new army Bremer said no
2004 2nd Battle of Fallujah started
2015 VP Maliki said PM Abadi’s reforms were unconstitutional
2015 Abadi went to Najaf to gain more support for reforms but Sistani would not meet him

Monday, November 6, 2017

How Violence Declined In Iraq, 2014-2017

Iraq is currently witnessing some of the lowest levels of violence since the 2003 overthrow of Saddam Hussein. That was precipitated by the defeat of the Islamic State in Mosul in July 2017. There was no way the organization could hold its remaining territory in Iraq, so why put up a fight and lose more men when it could try to fight another day. Its cadres were collapsing while it was also falling back to regroup. Even before that however, security had been improving in Iraq as IS was not able to sustain its attacks across the country like it once had. The change in the security situation is shown by a comparison of the last four years of security statistics.

This Day In Iraqi History – Nov 6

1914 British troops landed at Fao, Basra starting war against Ottomans in Mespotamia
1990 SecState Baker convinced China to abstain on UN resolution to allow use
            of force against Iraq for Kuwait invasion
1994 Iran fired SCUD missiles at Mujahadeen e-Khalq camp in Iraq
2002 UN told that Iraq cut back on oil smuggling but still continuing in violation of
            UN sanctions
2002 Powell got ok from Rice to make deal with France on UN resolution to allow UN inspections
            in Iraq
2003 Congress authorized $18.4 bil for Iraq reconstruction
2003 Bush speech If democracy failed in Iraq would be win for terrorism and bad for Middle East
2003 Report Saddam offered to allow US troops to search country for WMD before invasion
2004 Fallujah police collapsed after night attack by insurgents
2005 Report Feb 2002 DIA said Al Qaeda captive Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi was misleading in
            statements about Iraq-Al Qaeda cooperation
2005 Al Qaeda’s Libi continued to be source of Bush admin statements about Iraq-
            Al Qaeda ties after it was believed he was making things up
2005 Report Italian intel SISMI appeared to be source for both US & UK claim that
            Iraq tried to buy uranium from Niger/Africa
2005 SISMI got fake docs from informer Rocco Martino on alleged Iraq-Niger uranium
            deal and then passed intel to other countries
2006 Rumsfeld memo to White House Iraq not working and needed change
2015 Friday sermon Sistani rep said Abadi’s reforms should not be blocked

Sunday, November 5, 2017

This Day In Iraqi History - Nov 5

1914 England and France declared war on Ottoman Empire Would lead Mesopotamia into WWI
1914 British Gen Delamain head of Indian Expeditionary Force told to protect
            oil infrastructure and only take Basra if Ottomans joined WWI
1917 Battle of Tikrit between British and Ottoman forces
1958 Arif arrested on charges of attempting to assassinate Gen Qasim in coup
1968 Baath militia fired on Communist strikers at factory outside Baghdad killing 2
1978 Arab League condemned Camp David peace agreement between Egypt & Israel at
            Baghdad summit
1981 Iraq offered Muharram ceasefire Iran rejected it
1997 Iraq blocked US weapons inspectors into facilities in last two days
1998 UN Resolution 1205 condemned Iraq suspending work with weapons inspectors
2001 Time magazine op ed saying U.S. should go to war with Iraq because connected to 9/11
2003 Report Saddam made various overtures to US before war but ignored by US as
            fakes or to stall for time
2005 Operation Steel Curtain launched in Karabila Anbar along Syrian border after it
            was cleared in Oct 2005
2006 Saddam convicted on charges of killing 148 people in Dujail 1982 and sentenced to death
2015 VP Maliki said people shouldn’t support Abadi’s reforms anymore