If you frequent these pages, you’re well aware of why the US decided to release helmet cam footage of a raid on an ISIS prison in the northern Iraqi town of Huwija.
Put simply, Baghdad has had just about enough of Washington’s “strategy” for fighting terror in the country and when PM Haider al-Abadi said he would welcome Russian airstrikes, the US panicked. Rather than try to recount the story by paraphrasing ourselves, we’ll simply include our most succinct summary of what exactly is going on in Iraq, originally published here:
Perhaps the most astounding thing about recent events in the Mid-East is the extent to which outcomes that seem far-fetched one week become reality the next.
This dynamic began back in June when Iran’s most powerful general vowed to “surprise the world” with his next move in Syria. Just weeks later, he was in Moscow (in violation of a UN travel ban) hatching a plan with Putin to launch an all-out invasion on behalf of Assad on the way to forcibly enacting a dramatic shift in the Mid-East balance of power. Before the West had a chance to react, Moscow was establishing an air base at Latakia.
As all of this unfolded we began to suggest that it would be only a matter of time before Russian airstrikes began in Iraq.
The setup, we contended, was just too perfect. Iran controls both the military and politics in the country and so, we speculated that The Kremlin would get a warm welcome if Putin decided to launch an air campaign against ISIS targets across Syria’s eastern border.
Sure enough, Baghdad moved to establish an intelligence cell with Russia, Syria, and Iran in September and when PM Haider al-Abadi said he would welcome Russian airstrikes, it was clear that the US was about to be booted out of the country it “liberated” more than a decade ago.
Subsequently, Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joe Dunford traveled to Baghdad and gave Abadi an ultimatum: "...it’s either us or the Russians."
Well, despite Dunford’s contention that Abadi promised not to enlist Moscow’s help,just days later Iraq gave Moscow the green light to strike ISIS convoys fleeing Syria.
A desperate Washington then attempted to prove that the US could still be effective at fighting terrorism by sending 30 Delta Force soldiers into battle with the Peshmerga on a prison raid mission in the Northern Iraqi town of Huwija. Conveniently, one American soldier apparently had a GoPro strapped to his helmet and the footage was almost immediately leaked to Western media.
Washington apparently assumed that the successful raid would be enough to restore the faith because the Pentagon immediately began to formulate a "plan" to send Apache gunships and their crews to Baghdad. In what has to be considered one of the more embarrassing moments in a string of setbacks for America's Mid-East "strategy," Baghdad flat out told the US "thanks, but no thanks":
"This is an Iraqi affair and the government did not ask the U.S. Department of Defense to be involved in direct operations," spokesman Sa'ad al-Hadithi told NBC News. "We have enough soldiers on the ground."
Read the rest here...