بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Answer to Question
The Political Developments in Iraq
And Al-Kadhimi’s Role in Serving America
Question: As is well known, Al-Kadhimi won the confidence of the pro-Iranian Parliament majority, even though he is accused by parties loyal to Iran and its men in Iraq of colluding with America in the Soleimani assassination, and some Iranian men describe him as America’s man. So does this mean that Al-Kadhimi has strong support from America, and so he does not care about the interference of Iran and its men in Iraq? And does America still consider Iraq to be a center of gravity, and that Al-Kadhimi is America’s servant to maintain its influence in this center of gravity? May Allah reward you with the good.
Answer: To get a clear answer to the above questions, we will review the following matters:
1- America gives great importance to Iraq, as US President Trump recently stated: [“Iraq is a strong and important country, and it has a central role in the region and in achieving regional and international stability” and stressed “the United States’ keenness to strengthen relations between the two countries and the willingness of his country to provide the necessary economic aid to support the Iraqi economy..." (The Independent and The World, 11/5/2020)]. That is why America focused on it, so it sent a large army to occupy it, numbering 250 thousand soldiers, and formed an alliance of 49 countries that participated with about 50 thousand soldiers, along with a number of notorious security companies, such as the American Blackwater, whose headquarters are in the state of North Carolina, to carry out the dirty missions from eliminations, assassinations, thefts, and protection of American officials, their headquarters and their missions, and it has established military bases to be permanent, which are currently three main bases: Ain al-Assad in Anbar province, Balad Air Base in Salah al-Din province and Al-Taji Base north of Baghdad. There is the Strategic Framework Agreement, which was published by the United States and Iraq on 17/11/ 2008.
It has been stated in the Strategic Framework Agreement: “... confirm the sincere desire of their two countries to establish a long-term relationship of cooperation and friendship... and reaffirm this long-term relationship in the economic, diplomatic, cultural and security fields... this agreement will remain in effect unless any of both parties present a written notification to the other party that they intend to terminate this agreement, and the termination will take effect one year after the date of such notification... and to enhance security and stability in Iraq, the two parties will continue to work to develop a close cooperation relationship between them with regard to defense and security arrangements... etc.”. This is a colonial agreement in the full sense of the word, that gives America the right to interfere in Iraqi affairs under the name of "the close relationship of cooperation between them regarding defense and security arrangements"!
2- The protests began in Iraq against corruption, favoritism and embezzlement by officials, the prevalence of unemployment among people, the deterioration of public services and the deterioration of their living conditions and high prices, especially electricity prices. This has included an area of popular support of the regime. The protests started since 2010 and re-ignites and dies down each year either after its suppression or after false promises from the authorities to meet the demands of the protesters, or by working to contain it by some of the political forces involved with the regime. However, the recent protests that erupted since the beginning of October 2019 were different, because the protesters refused to stop protesting despite their oppression, and they rejected those political forces that were working to contain the protests, so the oppression increased on the protesters from killing, wounding, and imprisoning. This time, the protests included the attack on Iran and the protesters poured out their anger on it and burned its consulates and centers because of the response of Iran’s organizations in Iraq to them, and because they saw the extent to which the regime, the political blocs and armed militias are linked to America directly or indirectly, and the momentum of the protests was strong. The regime and Prime Minister, Adel Al Mahdi, showed that they were unable to control the situation, to address the problem, and to meet the demands of the protesters who are calling for the overthrow of the regime, forcing Abdul-Mahdi to announce his resignation on 30/11/2019 to save the regime, and on the following day, the Parliament accepted it immediately. Abdul-Mahdi became head of the caretaker government. And President of the Republic, Barham Salih, was forced to violate the constitution by rejecting to assign Asaad Al-Eidani on 26/12/2019, the candidate of the largest parliamentary bloc (Al-Banaa), to form the government, because the protesters rejected this candidate for his role as the governor of Basra in attempts to crush the protesters there. These protests were more impressive than their predecessors.
3- In the meantime, it happened that factions affiliated with the popular crowd, Al-Hashd Ash-Shaabi, fired missiles at an American base near Kirkuk on 28/12/2019 for no reason, killing an American man working in the base, and it seems that this was done outside the context, because the head of the popular crowd, Al-Hashd Ash-Shaabi, Falih Al-Fayyadh, had visited Washington two months ago on 19/10/2019, and he met the Defense Secretary, Mark Esper, in the presence of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Mark Milley. He announced that the relationship between the two countries, especially military cooperation, had been discussed, and now this killing is taking place! In the wake of the killing of that American element, the American army carried out air strikes on 29/12/2019, against the armed group of the Hezbollah Brigades, one of the popular crowd factions. And it was announced that at least 27 members were killed and 62 of these brigades were wounded. America launched an air strike by a drone plane on 3/1/2020 near Baghdad Airport, in which it was announced of the killing of Qasem Soleimani, commander of the Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, who had influence on the popular crowd, along with the deputy commander of the popular crowd Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and four other officers from the Revolutionary Guards with ranks: brigadier general, colonel, major, and captain. America has exploited these events in its favour and in favour of its president, who wants to score points to enhance his chances of a second term for the presidency of America.
However, it appears that these events charged the atmosphere against America, and this is why the Iraqi parliament took a decision on 5/1/2020 to work to end any presence of foreign forces, and they called on the Prime Minister to implement their decision. President of the caretaker government Abdul Mahdi cooperated with them. America's response to the decision of the Iraqi parliament was made by President Trump by threatening to impose sanctions on Iraq, and he said, "The United States will not leave Iraq unless the Iraqi government pays the cost of the American base there", and he said, "We have an air base there that is exceptionally expensive. It needed billions of dollars to build it long before I came. We will not leave Iraq unless they pay us their costs, and if Iraq demands the departure of the American forces, and this is not done on a friendly basis, we will impose sanctions on them they have not seen before, Iranian sanctions next to it will be a small thing." (Sky News 5/1/2020)
4- Iran then announced that it launched missile attacks at 1:20 PM Tehran time, with the start of the day on 8/1/2020 on American bases in Iraq, and they killed at least 80 Americans in the Iranian missile attack on American bases. On TV the headline was “We took Soleimani’s revenge”, but America acknowledged the attack and denied killing any of its members! Then the momentum of these events eased and calmed down without further escalation! Then Muhammad Tawfiq Allawi, the former Minister of Communications in the Al-Maliki government, announced on 1/2/2020 that the President of the Republic commissioned him to form the government. The protesters announced their refusal to nominate Allawi, as they announced that they reject every political figure who had been involved in the regime since the American occupation in 2003, and before his assignment was prolonged, he resigned. Then, on 16/3/2020, the President of the Republic commissioned Adnan Al-Zarfi to form the government.
He held several security positions in the regime and was a governor of Najaf after its occupation, but Al-Zarfi apologized on 9/4/2020 for his inability to form the government. On 9/4/2020, Iraqi President Barham Salih announced that the head of the Iraqi Intelligence Agency, Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, was assigned to form a government that does not belong to parties, and this is another violation of the constitution. It is reported that Mustafa Al-Kadhimi was working as an opponent of Saddam’s regime abroad, and after 2003 he returned to Iraq to Sulaimaniyah. While working as chief editor of Iraq affairs at the American news site Al-Monitor, he was staunchly defending that US-Iraqi relations must be decisively strong, so he said in an article of his: ["Following up on Iraqi-American relations after 2003 shows that when it becomes weak and marginal, it may open that door for entry of other external parties on the one hand, and also cause losses to the joint Iraqi and American interests in the region and therefore Iraq and the United States of America need to re-evaluate their relationship in order to build a strategic and strong relationship that helps to restore the balance between the powers in the region, and to ensure the mutual interests of the two parties" (Al-Monitor, an American website, 2/10/2015)]. He works in secret and openly in the interest of the American security services, and in full coordination with the American occupation forces in Iraq since his return to Iraq after 2003, and because he is so, many Iraqis were surprised that Al-Abadi suddenly presented him in 2016 as director of intelligence, a very sensitive position, and in need of a very reliable personality in America. ["In 2016, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi surprised the Iraqis by appointing a figure as Mustafa al-Kadhimi, the journalist and human rights activist, to head the intelligence. This is at the height of the war against the ISIS that occupied part of the country in a period of time before the Iraqi army, with the support of the international coalition, succeeded in defeating it ..." (France 24, 8/5/2020)].
Moreover, America did not hide its relationship with him while he was in the intelligence (and a report published by the American Wall Street Journal quoted David Schenker, the US Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs, as saying that Al-Kadhimi had done a "good job" while he was head of intelligence, and he was willing to partner with him as prime minister.) (Al-Jazeera Net from the Wall Street Journal, 30/5/2020). He had visited Saudi Arabia in 2017 with former Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, and was seen hugging at length his personal friend, Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman, who is dedicated to serving the Americans!
5- On 7/5/2020, the Iraqi parliament gave confidence to Al-Kadhimi’s government with the votes of 255 members out of 329 members, even though Al-Kadhimi is accused of providing assistance to America in the assassination of Qasem Soleimani and Al-Muhandis. Abu Ali Al-Askari, the security official in Hezbollah Brigades in Iraq's militia, attacked him, "and accused the head of the Iraqi Intelligence Service, Mustafa al-Kazemi, of "assisting" in the killing of the Quds Force Iranian commander, Qasem Soleimani, and the deputy chief of the Popular Crowd, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis" (Al-Hurra, 3/3/2020). And in the first reaction from the Iranian influence, ["The hard-line cleric Ali Al-Kurani, who is close to the Lebanese militia of Hezbollah, attacked Al-Kadhimi and accused him of carrying out American agendas" (Al-Ain News, 15/5/2020)]. Looking closely, we find that the parties loyal to Iran voted for him and gave him confidence, and they accuse him of working for America and accuse him of collaborating in killing their sons and killing Soleimani and Al-Muhandis.
Not only that, but he rejected all their demands and rejected the known quotas, that is, depriving those parties of ministerial "spoils". All of this indicates that America has a great influence over these parties directly or through Iran. And the declared tension with Iran is only misleading. Up until the killing of Soleimani only a storm of words took place in Tehran that soon ended, as if nothing had happened because of its ties behind a curtain with America. Perhaps those sectarian parties in Iraq did not realize that depriving them of ministerial portfolios is not a punishment for them, but rather it is in order to absorb the wave of anger that is sweeping the Iraqi street, as that wave returned and was renewed after the easing of anti-Coronavirus measures in Iraq. This means that most of these parties have a guaranteed loyalty to America directly or through Iran, and giving confidence in this way has prompted some media outlets to talk about an agreement or a deal!
Ibrahim al-Zubaidi stated in the London based newspaper, Al-Arab, "that some alliances and political currents in Iraq rejected Mustafa al-Kadhimi and issued statements against him that branded him as an agent for America, accusing him of masterminding the killing of Qasem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis" And al-Zubaidi continued by saying, “As you saw and can see that political currents agreed over passing it in Parliament, as if nothing had happened, only when the orders and instructions were issued to it by the embassy of Wilayat Al Faqih in Baghdad, or from the embassy of Uncle Donald Trump. Isn't this a kind of theater of the absurd?" (Al Arab, London’s newspaper in 8/5/2020), and then Al-Kadhimi won confidence despite the accusations! This is in addition to what can happen from "polishing" to Al-Kadhimi in the statement that will be issued about the strategic dialogue between America and Iraq, expected in the middle of this month, ["and the two countries are scheduled to hold a strategic dialogue in the middle of next month, to define the conditions for their future relationship" (Al-Jazeera Net from the Wall Street Journal, 30/5/2020)].
6- In the same confidence session, Al-Kadhimi considered his government temporary, and that he is seeking early elections, and he said: "One of his government's priorities is to hold early elections in response to the rightful demands of the people", in an attempt to win the protesters and opponents, and for this he added: ["Preparing for fair elections requires the assertion of state sovereignty in all areas, and in the forefront, restricting of arms in the hands of the state and its forces and at the command of the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, and not to turn the country into an arena to settle scores, and to prevent the use of the land of Iraq to attack others" (BBC, 7/5/2020)]. The acquisition of Al-Kadhimi’s confidence was an important achievement and good news for America, which seeks to make the system it established an effective one to achieve stability of its influence in Iraq and to legitimize it, and this is why the American Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, spoke immediately on the phone with Mustafa Al-Kadhimi to bless his success of the Parliament confidence and becoming the Prime Minister of Iraq, and wrote on his Twitter account on 7/5/2020 saying: "It was wonderful to speak today with the new Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, now urgent and serious work comes to implement the reforms demanded by the Iraqi people", and he added, "I pledged to help him implement his bold agenda."
And US State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said in a statement that: ["In support of the new government, the United States will press ahead with the electricity-related exemption "to import electricity from Iran for 120 days" as an offer of our desire to help provide the suitable conditions for success ..." (KUNA, 7/5/2020)]. Then, the American President himself spoke with Al-Kadhimi. White House spokesperson, Jad Dair, said in a statement that ("President Trump spoke on Monday 11/5/2020 by phone with Al-Kadhimi to congratulate him on the ratification of the Iraqi parliament for his government... And the President expressed US support for Iraq during the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, and emphasized the common interest with Iraq to permanently defeat ISIS... and that the President also encouraged the Prime Minister to address the Iraqi people's demands for reform and early elections ...” (Reuters, Al-Hurra (American), 12/5/2020).
7- Among the first actions of Al-Kadhimi when he first met with his ministers on 9/5/2020 is his announcement of the reappointment of Abdel-Wahab Al-Saadi as the head of the so-called anti-terrorism apparatus in Iraq, and in press statements, he said: "We decided to return the hero, brother, Abdel-Wahab Al-Saadi, to his position as head of the anti-terrorist apparatus". (The anti-terror forces are considered elite forces in the Iraqi army, as they were trained and armed by the American forces, and they served as spearheads in the war against ISIS over a three-year period 2014-2017) (Turkish Anatolia Agency, 9/5/2020). Al-Arabiya TV reported on 11/5/2020 that Mustafa Al-Kadhimi’s decision to re-appoint Abdel-Wahhab al-Saadi and his promotion to the leader of the anti-terrorist agency came in response to the demands of the street, as the counter-terrorism apparatus in Iraq is American in dependency to the core, (in the mid-2017 a US report described the "counterterrorism service" as the best that the United States has created in Iraq).
The Iraqi Army's apparatus was established by the United States with criteria for selection and training that may be strict and analogous to those used to recruit American Special Operations forces, according to the report published by the Washington Institute for Middle East Policy, (Arabic 21, 30/9/2019). Al-Saadi was, according to the previous source, promoted in positions exceptionally to the lieutenant general in 2006, and then to a Brigade in 2008 at the hands of the American agent Al-Maliki, which indicates the degree of America's satisfaction with this Iraqi officer. This apparatus enjoyed popularity stemming from two things that the revolting Iraqi street did not realize; the first is that America itself prevented the anti-terror apparatus from killing protesters, and this same American method was used in Egypt in 2011 when the Egyptian army vowed to refrain from using force against demonstrators, and it was acceptable by the masses of demonstrators to form the military council after Hosni Mubarak's removal, meaning that America wanted a 'clean' hand for the Iraqi counterterrorism agency to be the alternative to any change. As for the second matter, the Iraqi people thought that Al-Saadi, because of the dismissal (transfer) of Adel Abdel-Mahdi from fighting terrorism, was opposed to the regime that is headed by Abdel-Mahdi, so they wanted Al-Saadi as an alternative; otherwise, the Iraqi demonstrations strongly reject both Iranian and American influence in Iraq.
And we mentioned something regarding that in our publication dated 04/12/2019, where we said: "With regard to Iraq: America governs Iraq almost directly from behind a curtain. Its embassy in
Baghdad has 16,000 employees, who follow the work of all Iraqi ministries, especially the oil and security sector, and it is the largest embassy for America in the world. It has many military bases in Iraq, the most famous of which is the Ain al-Assad base in Anbar. In the last week of last month, America intensified its delegations, so there have been the sudden visit of US Vice President, Pence, on 23/11/2019 to the base of Ain al-Assad, and before a week passed the visit of the U.S. Vice President to Iraq, America sent the commander of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the U.S. Army Mark Milley to Baghdad on 27/11/2019. This is evidence of the relentless American follow-up, especially that Iraq is a sensitive case to America. It has been observed that the Anti-Terrorist apparatus in Iraq, which is a large military force formed by the Americans and equipped with the best military equipment, is far from the policy of repression of the protests, and it appears that the protesters in Tahrir Square view this force as their savior from the corrupt politicians, as they raise a big picture of General Abdel-Wahab Al-Saadi, one of the leaders of the agency after his dismissal by Abdel-Mahdi, as if this force is acceptable to the demonstrators to have a role in arranging the solution." End Quote.
8- The conclusion is that Al-Kadhimi is an American servant in Iraq
A- In his work history: While working as the editor-in-chief of Iraq affairs on the American news site Al-Monitor, and defending strongly, in 2015, that the US-Iraqi relationship must be decisively strong.
B- In his assignment in 2016 as Director of Intelligence, and his welcome by America as quoted by the American Wall Street Journal from David Schenker, Assistant Secretary of State, that Al-Kadhimi had done a "good job" while he was chief of intelligence, and welcomed to partner with him as Prime Minister.
C- Then his evident relationship with his friend Muhammad bin Salman, especially when he visited Saudi Arabia in 2017 with former Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and was seen embracing at length "his personal friend", Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, who is dedicated to serving the Americans”.
D- Gaining the confidence of Parliament on 7/5/2020, with direct and indirect American support from Iran, by pressuring the parties loyal to Iran, although al-Kadhimi is accused of providing assistance to America in the assassination of Qasem Soleimani and Al-Muhandis, and that he is carrying out "American agendas". And all this indicates that America has an effective influence on Iran, and the declared tension with Iran is nothing but misleading!
E- Then Abdel Wahab Al-Saadi, on 9/5/2020, re-appointed him as the head of the Anti-Terrorism Apparatus in Iraq, and its forces were trained and armed by the American forces. A US report published by the Washington Institute for Middle East Policy in mid-2017 described this Apparatus as "the best of what was created by the United States in Iraq..." (Arabic 21,30/9/2019)
All of this shows the extent of the "favoured position" that America gives to al-Kadhimi and the people of Iraq must realize this before they regret this!
9- I conclude with one message, and I say that there is no salvation for Iraq and the restoration of its glory and might to be a significant country and the center of a great state that conquers America, Britain and other colonial countries except by returning to its source of pride, namely Islam by establishing its state, the Khilafah Rashidah (rightly guided caliphate) on the method of Prophethood and Allah Al-Aziz Al Qawi is Truthful:
[وَلِلّٰهِ العِزَّةُ وَلِرَسُولِه وَلِلمُؤمِنِينَ وَلَكِنَّ الْمُنَافِقِينَ لا يَعلَمُونَ]
“And to Allah belongs [all] honor, and to His Messenger, and to the believers, but the hypocrites do not know” [Al-Munafiqoon: 8].