Former ISIS Patrons Conjured by the United States to Rebuild Iraq

Former ISIS Patrons Conjured by the United States to Rebuild Iraq

With the mainstream media obsessing over Russia collusion conspiracies, this story slipped quietly under the radar, but considering the fact that the United States spent over 2 trillion dollars in Iraq, the news that former ISIS patrons/benefactors/sponsors or whatever you want to call it are about to rebuild Iraq should scare the hell out of the American taxpayer. And no, this is not a joke. The US has already enlisted Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait, our GCC partners that is, to, let me quote, “rebuild” in Iraq, in the aftermath of the US led coalition’s claimed victory against the Islamic State. Mind you, all these countries are well known for their contribution in creating and then sponsoring ISIS, but we’ll get at that in a moment, right after the break.

After Iraq declared victory over ISIS back in December of 2016, with a little help from Russia and Iran I might add, President Trump’s Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said that coalition members must help with rebuilding Iraq’s atomized infrastructure. Here’s an excerpt from a Reuters article:

 

“The U.S. leads the coalition and hopes that after a three-year fight to defeat the militants it can count in large part on Gulf allies to shoulder the burden of rebuilding Iraq and on a Saudi-Iraqi rapprochement to weaken Iran’s influence in the country, which is run by a Shi‘ite led government. Donors and investors have gathered in Kuwait this week to discuss efforts to rebuild Iraq’s economy and infrastructure as it emerges from a devastating conflict with the hardline militants who seized almost a third of the country.”

 Rex Tillerson also added:

“If communities in Iraq and Syria cannot return to normal life, we risk the return of conditions that allowed ISIS to take and control vast territory.”

However, it is pretty obvious for any educated person that an army with tens of thousands of fighters, (the Islamic State at its apogee), which has its own PR agency and recruits regionally and globally, having complex logistical networks cannot summon itself out of nothingness. The operational capacity demonstrated by the Islamic State’s army for years can be only possible with massive sponsorship. Enter the aforementioned ISIS patrons, which are all enlisted by the United States to rebuild Iraq. Speaking of ISIS sponsors, referring to Kuwait as a venue for investors and donors looking to rebuild war-torn Iraq is particularly hilarious, at least for those of you who remember an article published in the Telegraph back in 2014:  “How our allies in Kuwait and Qatar funded Islamic State.”

Here’s a quote from the article:

“Islamic State (Isil), with its newly conquered territory, oilfields and bank vaults, no longer needs much foreign money. But its extraordinarily swift rise to this point, a place where it threatens the entire region and the West, was substantially paid for by the allies of the West.

 Isil’s cash was raised in, or channelled through, Kuwait and Qatar, with the tacit approval and sometimes active support of their governments.”

The Telegraph piece paints Qatar and Kuwait as rogue states sponsoring international terrorism, which any “normie” would consider to be a betrayal of European Union (including UK) and US’s claimed war against ISIS in the middle east. However, the fact that Gulf Cooperation Council countries were funding and helping raising regular armies of terrorists and mercenaries was a well known fact to intelligence agencies. Here’s from a leaked document pertaining to US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) back in 2012. The memo reads that the Gulf Cooperation Council and the United States tried to create a Salafist principality (quote) in eastern Syria, with the main purpose of isolating Bashar al Assad’s legitimate government. Here’s from the memo:

“If the situation unravels there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran).”

And here are the supporting powers, as per the same memo:

“The West, Gulf countries, and Turkey support the opposition; while Russia, China, and Iran support the regime.”

The Salafist principality mentioned in the leaked document is well known to our readers by its “birth” name, i.e. the Islamic (Salafist) State, an international terrorist organization used by US and its allies in the Middle East as a proxy army to both (try to) topple and/or pressure Bashar al Assad’s regime in Damascus, and to create the perfect pretext for the permanent occupation of Syria by the US military (just like in Iraq). With ISIS now defeated, there are still various groups of mercenaries/militants fighting in Syria, and we must emphasize those fighting in Idlib (northern Syria), which are hard to distinguish from regular ISIS terrorists, both in terms of sponsorship (the states from which they receive weapons and money) and their hardcore Islamic ideology.

The same strategy was used by  US in Iraq: Kurds were helped by the US in northern Iraq to diminish/isolate the (Shia’) government in Baghdad, then used as a pretext for Gulf Cooperation Council/US forces’ rapprochement: to alienate Sunni majority regions in Iraq from Baghdad’s influence. While the United States and GCC countries like to credit themselves with defeating the Islamic State, rather than with its inception, it’s a well known fact that Iran also played a major role in ISIS’ defeat. Even mainstream media recognized Iran’s key role in this extravaganza, and here are two examples: PBS’ “Iraq’s Shia Militias: The Double-Edged Sword Against ISIS” and  the Atlantic’s “The Shia Militias of Iraq”. The plan was, as general Wesley Clark put it a while ago: first Syria, then Iran:

i.e. the proxy wars launched by GCC and the US against Iraq and Syria were actually aimed at Iran. The rise of ISIS in Syria was due to West’s failure to topple Assad’s regime in Damascus, which was supposed to be followed by Iran, but the momentum has been broken in Syria. Unlike Iran, which has a mutual defense treaty with Syria and also religious/socio-economic ties (including shared history) which all go back hundreds of years, US’s assumed role (as a mediator of sorts) in the Middle East stems only out of necons’ lust for power and world hegemony, both geopolitical and economic.

What now? Well, following ISIS’ defeat, Iraq seems willing to roll the Kurds back to their pre-ISIS-war boundaries, after ISIS vacated the territories currently occupied by Kurds and the same goes for Iraq’s highways, currently controlled by US contractors. Basically, Iraq is now trying to regain control over its territory. And the irony is that the same countries which helped ISIS to destroy Iraq’s infrastructure will now provide the money to rebuild it, most likely via GCC-US backed contractors, representing certain interests.

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Soleimani: Avenging Martyr Mughniyeh, Other Martyrs Is Thru Eradicating «Israel»

Local Editor

15-02-2018 | 10:26

Commander of the Quds force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Core Major General Qasem Soleimani addressed a conference in the Iranian capital, Tehran, marking the martyrdom anniversary of Hezbollah commander martyr leader Haj Imad Mughniyeh.

Commander of the Quds force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Core Major General Soleimani

At the beginning of his address, Maj. Gen. Soleimani paid tribute to the martyrs of the Lebanese Resistance.

He went on to say: “The martyrdom of Haj Imad Mughniyeh had a prominent role in the development of the Islamic awakening,” adding that his martyrdom “initiated an uprising in the Islamic communities”.”It’s the first time that I’ll talk about my dear friend, Haj Imad Mughniyeh,” Gen. Soleimani said, adding that Haj Mughniyeh “is a legend to the entire world”.

The IRGC commander talked in depth about Haj Mughniyeh saying “he wasn’t specialized in guerrilla wars only. He had more strength than the enemy… [He] didn’t see things with the same perspective that we see.”

Gen. Soleimani gave credit to the Hezbollah leader martyr’s role in “breaking the fear in Lebanon” of the apartheid “Israeli” entity “rising in the face” of the Zionists.
He went on to say that “The enemy was obliged to admit and talk about Martyr Mughnyieh’s heroism.”

Elsewhere in his address, Gen. Soleimani tackled the issue of resistance saying: “The Mujahideen remain steadfast despite the injustice of some Arab regimes.”

He added, “Haj Imad Mughniyeh was the Man of surprises. He exposed the ‘Israeli’ drones, took pictures of them and knew the plans of the Zionists.”Relatedly, the IRGC commander praised Hezbollah martyr leader’s “strategic” role in confronting the “Israeli” aggression on Lebanon in July 2006, recalling one of his achievements: “striking the ‘Israeli’ Saar warship.

Also, Gen. Soleimani said the 1997 Ansarieh operation in southern Lebanon had been planned by Haj Mughniyeh.Regarding the Palestinian cause, the Iranian general said Haj Imad “brought Yasser Arafat to Iran and played a big role in raising Hamas’ capabilities”.

Gen. Soleimani concluded his address by referring to Hezbollah Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah as “one of the Divine miracles who confronted and faced the enemy,” whose orders Haj Imad was fully committed to following.

He added, “Sayyed Nasrallah gave Lebanon value. He saved not only the Shiites but also the Sunnis and Christians”.

Accordingly, “The enemy must know that avenging the blood of Martyr Mughniyeh and the other martyrs is via eliminating apartheid ‘Israel’,” the IRGC commander stated, shedding light on “Israeli” fear generated by “martyr Mughniyeh and other martyrs’ blood in Lebanon, Palestine and Iraq”.

The “Resistance front is expanding more and more every day,” Gen. Soleimani concluded, describing Martyr Leader Imad Mughniyeh as an “extraordinary personality nobody can underestimate and who was even feared by his enemy.

Source: Live Coverage, Translated by website team

 

Suleimani: Imad Mughniyeh a Legend

Suleimani Mughniyeh ceremony

Commander of Iran’s IRGC’s Quds Force, Maj. Gen Qassem Suleimani on Thursday hailed Hezbollah’s late commander Hajj Imad Mughniyeh as a legend that had forced the Israeli enemy to acknowledge his superiority.

At a commemoration ceremony in Tehran in honor of Mughniyeh on his 10th martyrdom anniversary, Suleimani paid his tribute to him, noting that Mughniyeh’s martyrdom shocked the world, but “resulted in Islamic uprising” against the Israeli enemy.

Suleimani expanded on Mughniyeh’s role in the Lebanese and Palestinian resistance.

“Hajj Imad Mughniyeh forced the Israelis to withdraw from south Lebanon and to acknowledge his superiority,” Suleimani said during the ceremony.

“Hajj Imad Mughniyeh had major role in turning Gaza into fortified stronghold of resistance against Israeli enemy.”

The Iranian general meanwhile, stressed that the real revenge for Mughniyeh is to eradicate the Zionist entity.

Hezbollah’s number one commander was assassinated on Feb. 12, 2008 in a car bomb in Syrian capital Damascus, in a joint operation by Israeli intelligence agency Mossad and CIA.

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The Debate – U.S. Middle East Policies

USA not interested in reconstruction in Iraq only destruction

Source

Jason Ditz

Throughout the most recent US war in Iraq, the massive damage done in the course of heavily bombing major cities and destroying bridges was seen as just another bill the US would be stuck with afterwards. The Trump Administration doesn’t see it that way, however.

So while Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will be in attendance at next week’s reconstruction conference, officials say he is not expected to offer up any American contribution to the estimated $100 billion in reconstruction Iraqi officials say they need.

Rather, US officials say they expect Iraq’s neighbors to “pour in money” as a way to improve relations over the long term, and to try to limit Iran’s substantial influence inside Iraq.

Yet Iraq doesn’t have that many non-Iran neighbors, and while Saudi Arabia is likely to contribute to fix damage in the Sunni part of Iraq, it’s probably not going to approach $100 billion. With Iraq’s own budget stretched thin, repairing the parts of Iraq the US destroyed over the past two years is likely to be a very slow effort indeed.

المشروع الروسي في الهجوم المعاكس .. اسقاط النجم الساطع

كلنا نعلم أن هناك مشروعا أميريكيا في المنطقة يأخذ اشكالا عديدة ويمر بمراحل متعددة

والتأمل الراجع للمنطقة منذ مناورات (النجم الساطع) التي بدأتها الولايات المتحدة في الصحراء المصرية عام 1980 مع الرئيس أنور السادات يوصل التحليل المنطقي الى نتيجة ليقول بأنها تحضير لحروب ستقوم بها الولايات المتحدة في مناطق الصحراء وليس في ثلوج روسيا وسيبيرية .. ولم يكن أحد قادرا على معرفة الصحراء التي يخطط الاميريكيون للقتال فيها والتي يقومون بتدريباتهم في الصحراء الكبرى من أجلها .. وقد درس الاميريكون تجربة مناورات النجم الساطع وتبين لهم مناطق الضعف الذي تعاني منه الاسلحة الاميريكية فالحوامات مثلا كانت تتعطل بسبب تسرب الرمال الى محركاتها مما تسبب بفشلها في أداء مهامها القتالية بشكل كبير كما أن دقة الطائرات المقاتلة كانت ضعيفة بسبب سوء الرؤية .. وتم تدارك هذه العيوب في تصاميم وتجهيز الطائرات لتقاتل بفعالية في أجواء رملية .. البعض كان يتحدث عن حرب مقبلة في صحراء نجد والحجاز لأن الاميريكيين ربما يتوقعون اجتياحا من قبل الرفاق الشيوعيين اليمنيين لمناطق النفط والغاز على غرار سيناريو أفغانستان فقد يتسرب الثوار الشيوعيون اليمنيون شمالا ويستولون على اراض سعودية قرب منابع النفط ويطلبون قدوم السوفييت لمؤازرتهم كما حدث في أفغانستان ..

ولكن اليوم صرنا نعرف ان الصحراء التي كانت أميريكا تريد القتال فيها هي الصحراء العراقية والسورية وفيها مشروع أميريكا الكبير لضمان الاستيلاء على القرن الحادي والعشرين .. فقد أدى قيام الثورة الايرانية عام 1979 ووصول السوفييت الى افغانستان في نفس العام الى جعل هذه الخطوة للاستيلاء على الصحراء العراقية السورية حيوية جدا أكثر من اي وقت مضى لاحتواء ايران والاتحاد السوفييتي قبل وصول أي منهما الى هذه العقدة الذهبية حيث قلب العالم والطاقة والمواصلات .. فقد توقع الاميريكيون ان فلسفة الفكر الاسلامي الايرانية ستتمدد غربا نحو العراق على الاقل بسبب البيئة الشيعية الغالبة وتطبعه بطابع الثورة الخمينية وربما يكون تقاطع المصالح مع السوفييت والعداء المشترك للغرب سببا في عدم تصادم الثوار الشيوعيين مع الثوار الشيعة من افغانستان الى العراق ولذلك فان الاميريكيين قد يكونون مضطرين لايقاف التحالف الشيعي الشيوعي عبر خوض حرب الصحراء التي تفصل سورية والعراق .. وكان القلق الاميريكي أيضا بسبب احتمال ان يطلق الشيوعيون السوفييت العنان للماركسيين السوريين للوصول الى السلطة أو المشاركة فيها في حركة مفاجئة .. وبذلك يكتمل مستطيل الرعب من افغانستان الى سورية لاقفال الصحراء العراقية السورية الى أجل لايعرف مداه ..

وكان تحريك الاخوان المسلمين في سورية عام 1982 ليس مجرد صدفة في ذلك العام الذي انطلقت فيه مناورات النجم الساطع .. بل كان أول محاولة لبناء أول جدار أو حاجز طبيعي ضد التحالف السوفييتي الايراني المحتمل (أو الشيعي الشيوعي) .. فالاخوان المسلمون أعداء طبيعيون للأفكار التي ليست من مصدر سني كما أنهم حركة مناوئة بشكل طبيعي للشيوعية .. واذا تم تمكينهم من الحكم في سورية فانهم سيحقنون بالنزق والقلق من الجار الايراني وحليفها الشيوعي وسيضطرون الى طلب العون من العدو الطبيعي لايران والاتحاد السوفييتي ولن يكون سوى اميريكا التي ستتبرع وتأتي الى الحدود السورية العراقية حيث الصحراء بخبرة مناورات النجم الساطع لحماية دولة الاخوان المسلمين الوليدة من الخطر الايراني والشيوعي .. وكان غزو لبنان من قبل اسرائيل في نفس العام 1982 بالتوازي مع تحريك الاخوان المسلمين في سورية ليس صدفة ايضا بل خطوة في اتجاه بناء قاعدة ضغط على الحكم في سورية اما للتوطئة لتسهيل هزيمته امام تحدي الاخوان في داخل سورية أو لقبوله بوصول الاخوان للمشاركة في الحكم وفرض الاجندة الاخوانية عليه .. في كلتا الحالتين ستصل اميريكا الى الصحراء السورية العراقية وتتموضع على خط جبهة من تركيا وحتى الخليج العربي والسعودية مرورا بالاردن وسورية .. وهناك قد تكون المواجهة الكبرى ..

والسياسة مثل الطرقات والمسالك .. فقد تتغير المسالك والطرقات لتجنب الممرات الصعبة طالما أنها توصل الى الهدف .. فقد تغيرت الطرقات وسقط الرفاق الشيوعيون داخل أسوارهم فيما تم ايقاف ثوار الخميني بالمتاريس البعثية لصدام حسين .. وبقيت تلك الصحراء العراقية السورية جاهزة لاستقبال وحمل مشروع القرن الواحد والعشرين .. فتم خوض عاصفة الصحراء كأول أول حرب للصحراء والتي كانت أول ثمرة مبكرة من سلسلة مناورات النجم الساطع الصحراوية .. ثم تلتها عملية غزو العراق عام 2003 والتموضع في الصحراء العراقية والتي لاتزال حتى هذه اللحظة تخضع لوجود وسيطرة أميريكية بشكل أو بآخر .. ثم جاء الربيع العربي والثورة السورية لاستكمال الاستيلاء على الجزء السوري من الصحراء حيث تم تمكين داعش من الصحراء .. فيما كان سيتم تسليم بقية سورية الى عدة مشاريع اسلامية تحيط بالصحراء ..

في غمرة نمو هذا المشروع وفعالياته لم ينتبه الكثيرون الى هجوم معاكس قام به الروس عبر نهوض هادىء للمشروع الروسي من بين حطام الاتحاد السوفييتي .. المشروع الروسي الذي عمليا يعتمد على اعادة احياء الكابوس القديم باحياء مستطيل الرعب الاميريكي من ايران الى سورية لافراغ هذا المستطيل من الاميريكيين وحرمانهم من الصحراء السورية العراقية .. والهجوم المعاكس الروسي الذي نهض من جثة الاتحاد السوفييتي يشبه مشروع اليد الميتة لروسيا الذي صمم للانتقام من اي هجمة نووية اميريكية غادرة تقضي على القدرة الروسية للرد .. حيث تركت منظومات اسلحة نووية روسية مفعلة لتنطلق بشكل آلي دون تدخل بشري كما لو ان الروبوتات هي التي ستتولى الانتقام في حال غياب البشر ..

والمشروع الروسي لتحرير الصحراء السورية العراقية من اليد الاميريكية بدأ بالتنسيق الصامت مع ايران لبناء مفاعلاتها النووية والتشاور معها دوليا .. فيما وصل الجيش الروسي فجأة الى الصحراء السورية وتموضع فيها مع الجيش السوري وطرد الجيش الأميريكي من جزء من الصحراء السورية الذي كان يتواجد فيها تحت غطاء داعش .. ويبدو الجزء الباقي من الصحراء تحت النفوذ الاميريكي غير مستقر لأن من الواضح أن المشروع الروسي لن يتوقف هنا وهو يريد اخراج الأميريكيين من الصحراء السورية العراقية والتمدد فوق المستطيل من ايران الى سورية لأنه أدرك أن احياء روسيا يبدأ بشلّ أميريكا باخراجها من هذه الصحراء بحيث يصبح مستطيل ايران العراق وسورية منطقة حيوية روسية صرفة .. ولذلك فان المشروعين الروسي والاميريكي يصطدمان عسكريا علنا في قلب الصحراء السورية العراقية .. ولايمكن لهما أن يبقيا معا في نفس الصحراء .. فالصحراء لاتتسع الا لأحدهما .. اما الاميريكي أو الروسي ..

الاميريكي يدرك الآن بعد اضطراره للخروج من العراق أن خروجه من الصحراء صار مسألة وقت وأن الفراغ يملأ بالروس وحلفائهم تدريجيا .. ويبدو ان حظوظ الروس لطرد الاميريكيين وملء الفراغ بالحلفاء في تلك الصحراء صارت كبيرة للغاية .. كما أن معركة الحلفاء شرق الفرات ضد الوجود الاميريكي صارت على الابواب بمجرد استعادة ادلب .. وهو ماسيحاول الأميريكيون اللعب فيه قدر الامكان وتعطيله أو تأخيره عبر حملة اعلامية واعادة تفعيل ملف السلاح الكيماوي أو تفعيل العلاقة مع اردوغان ومداعبته بتركه يذبح الكرد للانقلاب على تفاهماته الروسية .. أو عبر تزويد الارهابيين مباشرة بتكنولوجيا عسكرية مثل ماكشفته غارات الطائرات المسيرة نحو حميميم ومابينته من توفر تكنولوجيا لاتتاح الا لخبراء الصناعات العسكرية والتكنولوجية في مراكز متخصصة محدودة .. وربما بمحاولة زعزعة استقرار روسيا وحكم بوتين بحصاره اقتصاديا وفرض عقوبات عليه أو بالتأثير على فرص نجاحه في الانتخابات الروسية القادمة بتقديم تسهيلات أكبر للارهابيين لالحاق اذى معنوي يطال حملة بوتين الانتخابية ..

وحتى يظهر التحقيق نوع السلاح الذي استعملته القاعدة لاسقاط الطائرة الروسية في ادلب فان كل مايجري الآن أو ماسيجري هو في نطاق انكماش اميريكي وتمدد روسي في الصحراء لافراغ المستطيل الحيوي من اي وجود اميريكي .. أي لن يحل الروس محل الاميريكيين بنفس الطريقة الفجة بالاحتلال المباشر او غير المباشر ولكنهم مصممون على طردهم من المنطقة بحيث تبقى تحت نفوذ حلفاء روسيا .. فيما الاميريكيون يستشرسون في الرد والدفاع عما بقي لهم في هذه الصحراء ..

في الحرب السورية تتآكل مفاعيل ونتائج مناورات النجم الساطع التي تبتلعها القوات الروسية مع حلفائها .. فالنجم الساطع انطفأ وسقطت ثماره وليس الطائرة الروسية .. وفي الفترة القادمة القريبة سيدرك حلفاء النجم الساطع أن من كان اسقاط النجوم واصطيادها هو غايته وهوايته .. يجب أن يحسب له ألف حساب فيما سيصطاده بعد النجم الساطع .. انتظروا وستسرون ..

 

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Blowback: How ISIS Was Created by the Illegal U.S. Invasion of Iraq

Source

By Mehdi Hasan

“Your brother created ISIS,” college student Ivy Ziedrich told a startled Jeb Bush after a town hall meeting in Reno, Nevada, in May 2015. The then-Republican presidential hopeful tried to defend his elder sibling, former President George W. Bush, by blaming the rise of the Islamic State on Barack Obama, “because Americans pulled back” from Iraq in 2011.

It sounds a bit conspiratorial, right? Calling Dubya the creator of ISIS? The reality, however, is that Ziedrich’s accusation wasn’t far off the mark.

Had it not been for Bush’s catastrophic decision to invade and occupy Iraq in 2003, in defiance of international law, the world’s most feared terrorist group would not exist today. ISIS is blowback.

In this week’s episode of my six-part series on blowback, I examine the three ways in which Bush’s misadventure in Mesopotamia helped birth a group that the U.S. now considers to be one of the biggest threats to both U.S. national security and Middle East peace.

First, foreign military occupations tend to radicalize local populations and breed violent insurgencies. Take Hezbollah in southern Lebanon. Or Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

In Iraq, the U.S. morphed from heroic liberators into brutal occupiers within a matter of weeks. In Fallujah, which would later become an ISIS stronghold, U.S. troops opened fire on a crowd of peaceful protesters in April 2003, killing and wounding dozens of Iraqis.

The shootings, the torture, the general chaos, all helped drive thousands of Iraqis from the minority Sunni community into the arms of radical groups led by brutal gangsters, such as Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. Zarqawi’s Al Qaeda in Iraq, formed in 2004 to fight U.S. troops and their local allies, was a precursor organization to … ISIS.

Second, in May 2003, in a criminally stupid and reckless move, the U.S. occupying authorities disbanded the Iraqi army. That’s right: The U.S. made more than half a million well-armed and well-trained Iraqi troops unemployed overnight. No less an authority than Gen. Colin Powell, Bush’s secretary of state and America’s former top soldier, would later describe those jobless soldiers as “prime recruits for insurgency.”

In recent years, many of the top commanders in ISIS have been identified as former senior officers in Saddam Hussein’s army. Coincidence?

Third, the U.S. military detained tens of thousands of Iraqis, many of them noncombatants, at Camp Bucca in southern Iraq, where imprisoned jihadis were able to not only radicalize new recruits in plain sight, but also plan future operations and attacks. “Many of us at Camp Bucca were concerned that instead of just holding detainees, we had created a pressure cooker for extremism,” compound Cmdr. James Skylar Gerrond would later remark.

One former Bucca detainee, incidentally, was none other than Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Yes, the self-proclaimed caliph and leader of ISIS who, according to Iraqi terrorism expert Hisham al-Hashimi, “absorbed the jihadist ideology and established himself among the big names” while at Bucca.

To be clear, then, ISIS is blowback from the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq. And don’t just take my word for it. Listen to David Kilcullen, a former adviser to both Gen. David Petraeus and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, considered to be one of the world’s leading counter-insurgency experts. “We have to recognize that a lot of the problem is of our own making,” Kilcullen told Channel 4 News in March 2016. “There, undeniably, would be no ISIS if we hadn’t invaded Iraq.”

Mehdi Hasan is an award-winning British columnist, broadcaster, and author based in Washington, D.C. He hosts UpFront on Al Jazeera English and has interviewed, among others, Edward Snowden, Hamid Karzai, Ehud Olmert, and Gen. Michael Flynn. He is also the author of two books — a biography of former U.K. Labor Party leader Ed Miliband and an e-book on the financial crisis and austerity economics.

This article was originally published by The Intercept

Fifteen Years After the (illegal) Invasion of Iraq: The Anglo-American Oil Giants Start to Flaunt the Spoils of Imperial Conquest

Fifteen Years After the Invasion of Iraq: The Anglo-American Oil Giants Start to Flaunt the Spoils of Imperial Conquest

By Rory,

After 15 years of repudiating claims that the invasion of Iraq was only initiated to seize Iraqi resources, large oil corporations fronted by former architects of the war who vacated to the private sector are flagrantly advertising their contracts for exploration and production of Iraqi oil fields to potential investors.

The British oil and gas company BP won the contract to operate the Rumaila Oil Field back in 2009, and now proudly boast of its new drilling capabilities on Twitter. Rumaila is simply huge; by some measures it is the third largest reserve of crude oil on the planet, and is currently extracting 100 million dollars worth of oil every day – enough to cover the annual health budget of Iraq under the wartime rule of the US coalition every five days.

BP Oil Corruption Iraq War, Rumaila Oil Field

Rumaila Oil Field BP Extraction. Iraq War Oil Profiteering.

One of the board members of BP at present is Sir John Sawers, the former Chief of MI6 from 2009 to 2014 who acted as UK special representative to Iraq during the occupation. He cashed in a few favours and joined BP as an Independent Non-Executive Director in 2015, one year after he departed MI6 and two years after BP had been handed a licence to exploit one of the most valuable pools of liquid gold on the planet. There was seemingly no regulatory oversight of this very British oligarchy.

In March 2003, just before Britain went to war, BP denounced reports that it had held talks with Downing Street about Iraqi oil as “highly inaccurate” and denied that it had any “strategic interest” in Iraq, while Tony Blair described “the oil conspiracy theory” as “the most absurd”.

However, memos disclosed by The Independent in 2011 tell a very different story. In a series of meetings in 2003, BP revealed that they had approached Labour Peer Lady Symons to lobby the Blair government into demanding a share of spoils from the Iraq War in return for UK military support.

Minutes of a meeting with BP, Shell and BG (formerly British Gas) on 31 October 2002 read:

“Baroness Symons agreed that it would be difficult to justify British companies losing out in Iraq in that way if the UK had itself been a conspicuous supporter of the US government throughout the crisis.”

The minister then promised to “report back to the companies before Christmas” on her lobbying efforts.

The Foreign Office also invited BP in on 6 November 2002 to talk about opportunities in Iraq “post regime change”. Its minutes state:

“Iraq is the big oil prospect. BP is desperate to get in there and anxious that political deals should not deny them the opportunity.”

Not for the first time in their history (see the 1953 Iranian coup d’etat) BP succeeded in convincing the UK government to forcibly seize the resources of a sovereign foreign nation to bolster the share prices of large corporations like themselves. Cronies who endlessly spin around the revolving door between military/government positions like Sir John Sawers no doubt made a fair few quid in dividends and obscene salaries; in fact, Sawers is now a regular feature at Bilderberg conferences, rubbing shoulders with Hillary Clinton and George Bush. I imagine they got on famously.

The only cost was more than 100,000 Iraqi civilian lives.

At least now we can say conclusively that, yes, the Iraq War was about oil.

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All images in this article are from the author.

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