Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Displacement Crisis In Iraq, When Will People Go Home?

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) recently released two reports detailing the continued displacement crisis in Iraq. The IOM is the major organization dealing with this issue in conjunction with the United Nations and the Iraqi government. Since the end of 2016, thousands of people started returning to their homes. Those remaining however, are facing a series of difficulties that may keep them from going back for the foreseeable future.

This Day In Iraqi History – Dec 12

1922 Sir Herbert Samule proposed UK create Arab state of Iraq Hijaz Palestine
            Trans-Jordan maybe Najd
1932 Shiite leaders told Yasin Hashemi they would back him for PM if they got
            majority of cabinet posts
1973 Govt offered new autonomy plan for Kurds but rejected by Mustafa
            Barzani and KDP
1982 Iran attacked Qasr e-Shirin central Iran
1983 Iraq fired missiles at 6 Iranian cities killing 24 and wounding 283
1996 Uday Hussein seriously injured in assassination attempt in Baghdad by Nahdah
            opposition group
2001 Gen Franks briefed Rumsfeld on invasion preparations and estimated costs with
            start time in spring 2002
2003 US Special Forces captured Mohammed Musslit who led them to Saddam
2003 CPA adv Diamond told Rice that US should include UN in CPA’s plans to create
            new Iraqi govt Could alleviate Sistani’s demands for elections
2003 Pentagon audit found Halliburton overcharged $61 mil for delivering fuel to Iraq
2003 US guards at Abu Ghraib prison took pictures of themselves abusing Iraqi prisoners
2005 DIA report Insurgents recruiting networking training in prisons Could be
            more dangerous after release
2005 Rumsfeld told US Iraq Cmdr Gen Casey and US Iraq Amb Khalizad insurgents
            networking in Iraqi jails
2005 Report early 05 Islamist insurgents met with Al Qaeda in Iraq asking for a joint
            command Al Qaeda in Iraq said no wanting control
2006 Bush told NSC he was not going to announce Surge until Jan 07 Wanted new
            DefSec Gates in office
2009 Iraq held second auction for international oil companies to bid on its oil fields
2009 Blair said he would still have removed Saddam without WMD and that
            Saddam was a threat to world no matter what
2009 Maliki questioned by parliament over Baghdad bombings starting in August
            MPs complained about lack of coordination by ISF
2012 Diyala council voted to hold a referendum on turning province into a
2013 Iraq signed $1.1 bil deal to buy 24 FA-50 light fighter jets from South Korea

Monday, December 11, 2017

Iraq’s PM Abadi’s Second Chance To Be Something More Than A War Leader

Abadi at victory parade in Baghdad Dec 2017 (Iraq Prime Minister Office)

Prime Minister Haidar Abadi is riding high off the recent victory over the Islamic State. The group no longer holds any towns or cities in Iraq, and the premier made an official announcement of their defeat and held a victory parade in Baghdad to celebrate. The war has made the premier vastly popular with the public as recent opinion polls show. Abadi now has the chance to prove himself as a politician who can handle non-war matters a second time after failing miserably when he first entered office.

This Day In Iraqi History – Dec 11

1922 UK Colonial Office wrote only reason King Faisal accepted in Iraq was because
            he was backed by British
1961 Gen Qasim took 99.5% of Iraq Petroleum Companys concessions and
            created Iraq National Oil Company
2002 Pentagon started another post-war planning group just 3 months before invasion
2005 Report French intel told CIA several times in 2002 that no evidence to support Iraq-
            Niger uranium story
2005 National Dialogue Council’s Salah al-Mutlaq called for US to bring back Saddam
            era police and soldiers as long as didn’t have blood on their hands
2006 Outside experts told Bush status quo and withdrawal plan not working in Iraq
2006 Ret Gen Keane told Bush US needed troop surge that would protect civilians using
2011 Human Rights Min found mass grave in Basra from Saddam era

Sunday, December 10, 2017

This Day In Iraqi History - Dec 10

1949 Ali Aiyubi became premier of Iraq for 2nd time
1981 Report that Soviet Union resumed arms deliveries to Iraq after ban when Iran-Iraq War started
1983 Dawa members including Abu Muhandis set off 5 bombs at US and French embassies and 
           other targets in Kuwait killing 6 wounding 80
1996 Oil for Food program started operating in Iraq
1999 UN Res 1281 extended Oil for Food Program for Iraq
2001 Ansar al-Islam formed from 3 Kurdish Islamist groups
2002 USAID said Iraq would be small intervention but security needed to be first priority
2002 NSC committee presented humanitarian plan for postwar Iraq based upon
            secure environment and small US role
2002 IAEA went to Al Qaim facility US claimed was an active Iraqi nuclear plant
            Found it destroyed
2003 CPA presented list of 1,706 priority projects US and Iraq didn’t have money
            for all of them
2003 US asked France Germany Russia to forgive some of the debt Iraq owed them
2003 Russia refused US request to forgive its Iraq debt after US banned it from
            bidding on reconstruction projects
2007 Def Sec Gates told NSC that Pres Tabalni told him Maliki was intolerable and
            US should help remove him

 View the Iraq History Timeline 

Musings On Iraq In The News

I was quoted by Paul Iddon in "Terror and Murder - Islamic State Switches to an Insurgency in Iraq" for War Is Boring.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Security In Iraq, Dec 1-7, 2017

For 17 straight weeks Iraq has had less than 100 security incidents reported per week. During the first seven days of December there were just 59 Incidents the same amount as the last full week of November. There were 252 reported deaths, but 202 of those were from several mass graves in Ninewa, meaning there were only 50 violent deaths and another 61 injured mentioned in the media.

This Day In Iraqi History – Dec 9

1914 Ottomans defeated by British at Battle of Qurna and surrendered Basra
1958 Former PM Rashid Ali al-Gaylani arrested by Gen Qasim for plotting a coup
1985 Saudis announced attempts at talks with Iran to end Iran-Iraq War failed
2001 VP Cheney said story 9/11 hijacker Atta met with Iraq intel officer in Prague was
            pretty much confirmed
2001 Cheney told NBC Iraq hosting terrorists and developing WMD
2002 UK Foreign Office legal adv Sir Wood wrote paper saying UN Resolution 1441
            did not authorize war with Iraq
2002 UK Foreign Office officially asked Attny Gen Lord Goldsmith for legal
            advice on whether 2nd UN resolution needed to use force against Iraq
2002 Blair ForPolAdv Manning MI6 head Dearlove met NatlSecAdv Rice Said start 03
            US would go to UN and argue for military action vs Iraq
2002 UN inspectors found Fallujah II chlorine plant out of service US listed it as WMD
2003 Suicide Car bomb on Mosul camp wounded 41 US troops and 6 Iraqi civilians
2004 22 parties including Dawa SCIRI Sadrists INC announced formation of United
            Iraqi Alliance for Jan 2005 elections Ayatollah Sistani helped form list
2004 Iraqi Islamic Party submitted 275 candidates for Jan 2005 elections Would be
            only major Sunni party to participate
2004 Bush told families his govt was getting best equipment for US troops in Iraq after
            Rumsfeld downplayed complaints
2005 Report Al Qaeda’s Libi’s intel about Iraq-Al Qaeda ties that proved false was
            acquired while he was being tortured by Egyptians
2005 Report Feb 02 DIA was skeptical of Al Qaeda’s Libi’s intel on Iraq-Al Qaeda ties
            because he was being held in Egypt
2005 United Iraqi Alliance breaking up into factions after elections Complaints that it
            hadn’t presented a vision for Iraq because not using qualified people
2006 NSC meeting US Cmdr Iraq Gen Casey told Bush Maliki agreed to go after
            militias that broke law

Friday, December 8, 2017

This Day In Iraqi History - Dec 8

1985 Saudis announced attempt to end the Iran-Iraq War through dialogue with Tehran
2002 Iraq admitted that it was close to building a nuclear bomb but was abandoned a
            long time ago
2002 Gen Thurman and McKiernan went to Gen Franks and asked for more
            troops for Iraq invasion
2003 Bremer told Gingrich’s criticism of CPA and situation in Iraq were wrong and he
            should visit country
2004 In Kuwait after being questioned about lack of up to date equipment for US troops
            in Iraq Rumsfeld said “You go to war with the army you have”
2005 Bin Laden’s Pakistani biographer quoted in Osama bin Laden I Know book said
            bin Laden hated Saddam
2006 NSC meeting SecState Rice pushed for not getting involved in civil war and
            pushing Iraqis to do more
2006 NSC meeting Joint Chiefs head Gen Pace said US forces could not stand by
            during Iraq civil war
2006 Bush told NSC that US couldn’t wait for Iraqis to do more US had to act to
            reduce violence
2009 ISI set off 5 car bombs hit Finance, Justice and Foreign Ministries in Baghdad
            killing 127 448 wounded 3rd mass bombing in Baghdad over short span

Thursday, December 7, 2017

How Arguments Over Iraq Invasion Plan Were Fought Through Press Leaks

On November 21, 2001, President Bush asked Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to start revising the war plan for Iraq. Rumsfeld was unhappy with the plan because it was largely a replay of the 1991 Gulf War. The Pentagon chief believed the war could be implemented much more quickly and with a smaller force than the hundreds of thousands the military wanted. This caused a large controversy within the Defense Department, which spilled over to the rest of the administration and ex-military men as well. Tensions grew so high that Rumsfelds supporters and critics began leaking highly detailed elements of the war strategy to the press to try to win points for their side.