Conspiracy theories abound after assassination attempt on Iraqi PM

The  Iraqi Shi’a militias went wild after the  assassination attempt on PM Kadhimi….. or an incident assumed to be so……. in exclaiming their innocence.  The first assumption to understand is that most of the Shi’a  militia groups in the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) are beholden to and paid by their Iranian overseers. Nothing of this sort would be attempted without Iranian approval and promotion. On twitter many explanations  to exculpate the militias were offered. Among them were;  that the militia does not have drones. Of course the Iraqi army and security services are totally infiltrated  and saturated with Iranian Shi’a  supporters. Getting  drones from the army inventory would not be difficult. Another was that the antimissile systems located at the US Embassy would have shot them down. Of course the missiles were not targeted on the Embassy. Some Western “experts”  wondered why Kadhimi was targeted since he is so weak and pulled and pushed by militias in every direction anyway, and is not a threat to their objectives. In the Arab world the strong horse is admired, and the weak one brutalized. Kadhimi is seen as a sop to Western interests and hence a target to be punched about.

Qais Al Khazali leader of the Iranian surrogate and most violent of the PMU groups, Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq. He was instrumental in the murder of five US soldiers in 20 January 2007. Captured by the Brits in 2007. He was released in a captive exchange in 2010.

The theme promoted by the PMU propaganda outlets, which are well funded by the Iranians, is the it was a CIA engineered event to gain sympathy for Prime Minister  Kadhimi.   An excerpt of the propaganda indicated in one of the MEMRI reports below:

“One poster claimed that the drone attack on Al-Kadhimi’s home came “only one day” after clashes between Iraqi security forces and supporters of Iran-backed militias took place, describing the events as “crimes committed against peaceful civilian protesters in Tahrir Square, where Iraqi security forces fired live ammunition on protesters, killing four martyrs and wounding 125 others.” The posters also alleged that security forces “set fire to the [protesters’] tents.”

Supporters of the Iran-backed militias have been demonstrating for weeks near Baghdad’s Green Zone, voicing their rejection of the results of the recent parliamentary elections, in which some pro-Iran parties lost many seats.

The poster claimed that Al-Kahdimi had given the order to shoot the protesters, and that “there is an American desire to hide this crime” and save Al-Kadhimi by “portraying him as a victim.”

MEMRI is an exellent source of getting the news unfiltered, especially  from the Middle East.

Actually the proposition that the CIA would do something so bold and imaginative is beyond belief.  The CIA has been throughly reduced to wokism timidity.The thought that Robert Burns, currently   the CIA director, would approve an action  of this sort is ludicrous. He is one of the architects of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action ( JCPOA) , The nuc “deal” with Iran. Anyone who believes that an  agreement with the Iranian regime is worth more than the paper is written on should not be in a position of security for the United States. Why the Biden regime keeps pursuing this dead deal despite continued Iranian provocations  is bewildering and humiliating for this country. The idea that the folks at the top  have more information, and therefore us folks at the bottom of the totem pole should assume they know best should have been discarded long ago, after Vietnam, after Iraq, and after Afghanistan. See Dereliction of Duty by H.R. MacMaster

Director of the CIA, William Burns. a Long time State Department diplomat. a great fan of John Kerry, see his gushy hagiographic compliments heaped on the Vietnam traitor in his book, The Back Channel


Policy and ideology drives our strategies, not intelligence, even if it were good ( dubious). Many tragic examples are obvious.The public was told for years the  Vietnam victory was right around the corner  because that was the policy narrative. See George W. Allen, None So Blind. We departed Iraq, not because it was stable, but because Obama’s political  fortunes were best served by doing do. Afghanistan, like Vietnam, based on the strategies and tactics we used was a losing proposition.With  better strategy could we have done better?  Maybe….. or it might have just dragged the war on longer).  The generals for years,  from day one, claimed all was going well in Vietnam and Afghanistan. See B. Daniel Bolger,  “Why We Lost in Iraq and Afghanistan,”  an article in Harpers, September 2014. Some, no doubt, had reservations but most  did not speak  loud and clear publicly.  Were these optimistic announcements based on reality, on the ground assessments, or just toeing the politically correct line? Now belatedly we know the truth. As anyone been held accountable? No, McNamara has offered contrition for Vietnam but no one for Iraq or Afghanistan.    How I wish we had had a President Lincoln to weed out the losers, but  Bush, Obama, Trump or Biden has not  done so.

Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, whose portrait is being held aloft by his Shiite supporters.

In Iraq, as so often happens in. this world,  the oppressed became the oppressor. The disenfranchised  Shi’a community under Saddam has now become the oppressors, particularly of the once dominant Sunni community, but they are disunited as usual and have in no way succeeded in establishing cordial relations with the Kurds, 25% of the Iraqi population.  By no means do all the Shi’a support the The Shi’a militias. The cosmopolitan urban Shi’a  middle class and the educated young do not support them, nor do the many followers of Grand Ayatollah Al-Sistani, who commands wide respect among all Shi’a. But as always in the Arab world, the people  with the weapons control those who don’t. The Army is ineffective, shot through with militia sympathizers and members, and the Counter-Terrorism  Service, an excellent professional apolitical fighting force, once popularly known as the “Golden Division,” took heavy casualties in pushing the ISIS out of the north and has never been properly reconstituted.


The Iranians do not expect to be able to absorb Iraq into their empire but they do want to keep to keep it fragmented and weak. At times the Iranians have surreptitiously supported Sunni terror groups such as Al Qaeda , Iraqi Sunni aspirations, and the Kurds in Iraq. The primary  objective is to keep the sectarian pot boiling. As long as Iraqis are killing each other they  do not constitute a threat  to Iran.

This  attack in Iraq  is just one more acts of intimidation to anticipate and  humble any American moves to stymie Iranian ambitions in Iraq or elsewhere. So far this course of action has been successful.   Iranians can always hide behind their surrogates which,  makes it easier for the Biden team to avoid blaming the Iranians for their hostile acts and proceed with negotiations in the vain hope that somehow the American public consumed at present with domestic issues will applaud.













About Tex

Retired artillery colonel, many years in a number of positions in the Arab world. Graduate of the US Military Academy and the American University of Beirut. MA in Arab studies from the American University in Beirut along with 18 years as Middle East Seminar Director at the JFK Special Warfare Center and School, Served in Vietnam with 1st Inf Division, Assignments in Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt, plus service with Trucial Oman Scouts in the Persian Gulf. Traveled to every Arab country on the map including Iraq, Syria, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco.
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