19 January 2022
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It has become clear that the Sadrist movement dominated the new Iraqi parliament's first session last week. Despite their main Shiite rivals, the Coordination Framework, attempting to block the session’s progress, the Sadrists forced the legislative body to adhere to the constitutional deadlines and vote in a speaker and two deputies during the first session. As a result, the Framework resorted to the Federal Court, claiming the session was not constitutional. The Federal Court issued an injunction on January 13, which temporarily…
The nearly two-decade-old U.S. military mission in Iraq has entered a dangerous new phase, with critics warning the Biden administration has allowed the mission to carry on without clear parameters or a straightforward end game amid increased attacks by volatile Iranian proxies. President Biden, who oversaw last year’s disastrously executed military pullout from Afghanistan, declared months ago that the U.S. combat role in Iraq would be over by the end of 2021. While American forces formally transitioned in December from a combat mission against…
Two days ago, four men gathered for lunch in Najaf, at the house of Muqtada al-Sadr’s father. The influential Shia cleric, riding high after his parliamentary election victory was confirmed this week, had invited Hadi al-Amiri, head of the Fatah bloc, Qais al-Khazali, commander of the powerful Shia armed faction Asaib Ahl al-Haq, and Faleh al-Fayyadh, head of the Popular Mobilisation Authority (PMA) paramilitary umbrella group. They were there for negotiations, and to "discuss their visions about forming the next government", a…

Iraq’s Dysfunction Will End in Revolution Wednesday, 22 December 2021 22:17

On October 1, 2019, young Iraqis took to the streets to protest corruption, ineffective government, and a lack of prospects. Initially, Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi’s government responded with deadly force. Iranian-backed militias fired into the crowds, killing at least 600. Crowds grew alongside Iraqis’ outrage at such tactics. Ultimately, Abdul-Mahdi resigned. After several false starts, Iraqi political bosses settled on Mustafa al-Kadhimi, a former human rights researcher and journalist whom Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi had appointed to lead the Iraqi National Intelligence Services (INIS)…
Human rights violations and terrorism are two subjects that should be considered besides the Iranian regime’s other important and critical cases, as its nuclear case. Over the past years especially after the fall of Iraq’s government in 2003 which give the Iranian regime a new opportunity for interference in the Middle East and a unique opportunity to expand its influence in the country’s regions, the regime presented a new level of brutality, human rights violations, and terrorism. Something that has been…
As the biggest winners of Iraq’s 10 October parliamentary elections coordinate efforts to form the upcoming government, opposition parties have so far failed to crystalise a coherent approach to pushing for long-suspended reforms. Although the election witnessed the lowest ever turnout, at just 41 percent, it was the first early vote to be held in Iraq following the US-led invasion in 2003 that toppled the regime of Saddam Hussein and replaced it with a ruling system that was hoped to be democratic. But the…
The three drones that targeted the residence of the Iraqi Prime Minister were sent to deliver a clear message to the heart of Baghdad’s state power: it is not through the ballot box alone that power is wielded in Iraq. The Prime Minister was slightly injured by the explosion and remained defiant: we know the perpetrators very well, he said in a televised address the same day, and we will pursue them. In truth, however, the perpetrators scarcely intended to…

Kadhimi's last chance Thursday, 11 November 2021 21:57

There is no need to wait for the result of the investigations committee to guess who was behind the attempted assassination of Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi at dawn last Sunday. The Fatah Alliance militias, led by Asa'ib Ahl Al-Haq and Kata'ib Hezbollah, are loyal to Iran and have viewed Al-Kadhimi as their main rival in Iraq. They have threatened him on several occasions and have never hidden the fact that they want to get rid of him, even as…
Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi survived an armed drone attack Sunday on his official residence in Baghdad that wounded seven of his guards. The attack, which involved Iranian-made drones, was an assassination attempt that sends a message of intimidation to Kadhimi and any other Iraqis who pose a challenge to the influence of Iran and its proxy militias inside Iraq. Although no group has claimed responsibility for the attack, Iraqi security officials blamed Iran-backed Iraqi militias, which increasingly have challenged the authority…

Iranian Drones Cast Intimidating Shadow Over Iraq Wednesday, 10 November 2021 23:15

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi survived an armed drone attack Sunday on his official residence in Baghdad that wounded seven of his guards.  The attack, which involved Iranian-made drones, was an assassination attempt that sends a message of intimidation to Kadhimi and any other Iraqis who pose a challenge to the influence of Iran and its proxy militias inside Iraq. Although no group has claimed responsibility for the attack, Iraqi security officials blamed Iran-backed Iraqi militias, which increasingly have challenged the authority…
Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi has survived an attempt on his life after suspected Shia militias launched a drone strike on his official residence in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad early on Sunday morning. While the prime minister emerged unscathed and later gave a public address decrying the attack and calling for dialogue, the attack itself has been viewed as a deadly message designed to re-establish Shia militia dominance after they were trounced in last month’s elections. Meanwhile, the winner of the…
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