Iraq Articles

Bernie Links Hillary With Cheney, George W. Bush in Iraq Ad

5:01 PM, Jan 20, 2016

Bernie Sanders is subtly bringing up Dick Cheney and George W. Bush in his latest ad. The ad is an anti-Iraq spot, highlighting his opposition to the war from the get go.

Hillary Clinton, along with Cheney and Bush, supported the war.

"As president, I will defend this nation, but I will do it responsibly. I voted against the war in Iraq, and that was the right vote," Sanders said in a subtle but clear dig at Hillary Clinton.

"We must never forget the lessons of that experience. ISIS must be destroyed, but we should not do it alone. We need an international coalition with Muslim boots on the ground fighting with our support. It's time to end the quagmire of perpetual warfare in the Middle East. As President, I will..

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Good Riddance

Jan 18, 2016

When word got out that Rep. Jim McDermott will be packing it in at the end of the year, House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi was quick to plump the blustery leftist who has represented Seattle since 1989. He “has been a tenacious champion of hard-working Americans," he "has shown the strength of his progressive values," and he has been (insert trigger-warning here for those sensitive to witless rubbish) "a valuable intellectual resource to the Congress."

Pelosi chose not to mention McDermott's more salient accomplishments: the trafficking in illegal wiretaps and the coddling of dictators (including those at the IRS).

McDermott made a name for himself—"Baghdad Jim" to be precise—traveling to Iraq during

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Obama Vows to Destroy ISIS and Take Their Land

9:04 AM, Nov 22, 2015

President Barack Obama is beginning to use tougher rhetoric when discussing ISIS. The leader of the free world, today at a press conference at the Ritz Carlton in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, vowed to destory ISIS and to take the land they are currently occupying. 

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An Iraqi Abroad

Ahmad Chalabi, 1944-2015.
Nov 16, 2015

Before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, my friend Ahmad Chalabi would often carry fat tomes about America’s occupations of Germany and Japan. An Iraqi exile after 1958 who lived mainly in London and Georgetown and maintained an off-and-on, love-hate relationship with Western intelligence agencies, he was blessed with a voracious, curious, and sensitive mind. He had a prodigious memory, too, and was well-schooled beyond mathematics, in which he held a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. But knowledge ultimately failed Chalabi.

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Obama: ISIS Is Not Gaining Strength

9:39 AM, Nov 13, 2015

President Obama does not believe ISIS is getting stronger. At least, that's what he said this morning in an interview that aired on ABC News:

"I don't think they're gaining strength," Obama said of ISIS. "What is true is that from the start our goal has been first to contain and we have contained them. They have not gained ground in Iraq and in Syria ... you don't see the systematic march by ISIL across across the terrain."

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The Pottery Barn Rule, on Steroids

Book review: Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win, by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin.
4:13 PM, Nov 03, 2015

Ahmed Chalabi died Tuesday, at his home in Baghdad, without many honors. He had egged on the U.S. invasion in 2003 by circulating stories of Saddam’s nuclear facilities, wanting to be president of his old country. But when none were found, he became infamous in his new one instead.  

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Soldier Killed During Iraq Hostage Rescue; Pentagon Insists U.S. Does 'Not Have Boots on the Ground'

7:28 AM, Oct 26, 2015

The Pentagon Friday announced the death of Master Sgt. Joshua L. Wheeler, a soldier who had been serving in Operation Inherent Resolve in Iraq. He died of wounds received during a hostage rescue mission.

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White House Compares Putin's Syria Bombing to George W. Bush in Iraq

7:21 AM, Oct 01, 2015

White House spokesman Josh Earnest compared Vladimir Putin's bombing in Syria to George W. Bush's "military solution in Iraq in the last decade." Earnest made the comparison at the daily White House press briefing.

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Our Iranian Interlocutor

Ali Khamenei’s dark obsession with Jews and Israel
Sep 28, 2015

Antisemitism has never been an easy subject for America’s foreign-policy establishment. Read through State Department telegrams and Central Intelligence Agency operational and intelligence cables on the Middle East and you will seldom find it discussed, even though Jew-hatred—not just anti-Zionism—has been a significant aspect, if not a core component, of modern Arab nationalism, Islamic fundamentalism, and what usually passes for critical thought among sophisticated Arab elites. 

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Three ISIS Drones Have Been Destroyed in Iraq, Syria

6:29 AM, Sep 18, 2015

The latest official report of a drone in the possession of the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) is tucked in an August 3rd press release from U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), the overseers of the air campaign in Syria and Iraq against the terrorist organization. 

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Cheney: Congress Should Treat Iran Deal As a Treaty

"It should require two-thirds vote of the Senate to go in force."
9:04 AM, Sep 02, 2015

Former vice president Dick Cheney and his daughter Liz Cheney appeared on MSNBC's Morning Joe Wednesday morning to promote their new book, Exceptional. The Cheneys spoke about national security, foreign policy issues like the Iran deal, and 2016 politics.

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Obama and Hillary, Not Jeb, Responsible for Iraq Today

10:18 AM, Aug 15, 2015

Jeb Bush delivered a thoughtful and clear-eyed speech on Tuesday about the threat posed by ISIS and radical Islamic terrorism. It was a forward-looking speech that offered a compelling strategy to deal with this growing threat (something we haven’t heard from Hillary Clinton).

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ISIS Crosses Another Line

Possibly a red one.
3:10 PM, Aug 14, 2015

According to CNN:

The U.S. is investigating what it believes are "credible" reports that ISIS fighters used mustard agent in an attack against Kurdish Peshmerga this week, causing several of them to fall ill, U.S. officials working in at least three separate parts of the Obama administration said Thursday. 

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The Guns of August 1990

A quarter-century after Saddam’s invasion of Kuwait, we still haven’t learned the right lessons from that war
Aug 10, 2015

Just after midnight on August 2, 1990, an invasion force of approximately 100,000 Iraqi troops crossed into Kuwait. As mechanized and armored Republican Guard divisions breached the border and sped southward across the desert, Iraqi Special Forces commandos launched airborne and amphibious assaults into Kuwait City. The Kuwaiti military, outnumbered and taken by surprise by the well-coordinated offensive, was swiftly routed.

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Consistently Wrong

The president’s happy talk and sad results
Aug 10, 2015

President Obama is putting on the hard sell to market the nuclear deal he reached with Iran. On July 14, in announcing the agreement, he said: “This deal shows the real and meaningful change that American leadership and diplomacy can bring—change that makes our country and the world safer and more secure. We negotiated from a position of strength and principle—and the result is a nuclear deal that cuts off every pathway to a nuclear weapon.”

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ISIS Is Thinking Big

3:24 PM, Jul 31, 2015

ISIS strives to create a new Caliphate.  It is the fundamental reason for its existence.  But the vision does not stop there.  As USA Today reports:

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Top Obama General Blames President for Iraq Collapse

7:31 PM, Jul 21, 2015

General Ray Odierno, the outgoing chief of staff of the Army, blamed President Obama's disengagement from Iraq for the country falling apart. He made the comments in an interview tonight on Fox News:

"Well, it's frustrating to watch it," Odierno said of the collapse of Iraq. "I think a lot of hard work into that. And we thought we had it going exactly in the right direction. But now we watch it fall apart--it's frustrating."

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Top General: Prepare for a Long War

3:35 PM, Jul 02, 2015

That is the guidance from the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs in what will likely be his last message to the troops and commanders serving under him. 

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Iran & U.S. Share a Base

3:47 PM, Jun 22, 2015

Josh Rogin & Eli Lake report in Bloomberg that:

The U.S. military and Iranian-backed Shiite militias are getting closer and closer in Iraq, even sharing a base, while Iran uses those militias to expand its influence in Iraq and fight alongside the Bashar al-Assad regime in neighboring Syria.

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The Iran-ISIS Connection

Jun 22, 2015

A year ago the Islamic State first made headlines around the world by storming Mosul and conquering Iraq’s second-largest city. President Obama pledged to “degrade and ultimately destroy” the organization. Here we are a year later, and with ISIS now holding more territory—including other Iraqi cities like Ramadi—the Obama White House has yet to figure out how to degrade, never mind destroy, the organization. As Obama said last week at the end of the G7 summit in Germany, “We don’t yet have a complete strategy.”

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Jun 22, 2015

More U.S. Troops to Iraq

8:14 AM, Jun 10, 2015

Michael R. Gordon at the New York Times writes:

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No Strategy to Defeat ISIS, No Strategy to Win in Iraq

4:29 PM, Jun 08, 2015

On a day when the president declares that the United States does not yet have a complete strategy for defeating ISIS, it compounds the discouragement to learn that, as Barry Posen writes at 

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Obama on Fighting ISIS: 'We Don't Yet Have a Complete Strategy'

9:43 AM, Jun 08, 2015

At a press conference in Germany, President Obama admitted that he does not have a "complete strategy" to defeat ISIS:

"When a finalized plan is presented to me by the Pentagon, then I will share it with the American people," said Obama. "We don't yet have a complete strategy because it requires commitments on the part of the Iraqis as well about how recruitment takes place, how that training takes place. So the details of that are not yet worked out.

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Hindsight? Feh.

If you knew what you know now . . .
Jun 01, 2015

The latest craze in the presidential campaign is to ask the contenders (on the Republican side) whether they would have invaded Iraq if you knew what you know now. The answer is supposed to be obvious. Jeb Bush got himself into some trouble by answering the more important question, which is where the errors were made and how he would have corrected them. He is now backpedaling on the unforgivable error of having given too sophisticated an answer. 

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Target Baghdad?

4:24 PM, May 29, 2015

Much has been made of the pending Iraqi offensive to retake Ramadi from ISIS but it may be that Iraq’s principle city is vulnerable.

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Carly on Offense on ISIS

2:04 PM, May 28, 2015

Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina says the United States is "not making progress" in its fight against ISIS. In a recent interview with THE WEEKLY STANDARD, Fiorina said President Obama "understates the significance of the situation" with the terrorist group that has taken over large swaths of land in Syria and Iraq.

"It's more than a tactical setback," she said of Ramadi, a critical town in Iraq's Anbar province that fell to ISIS forces last week. "It demonstrates that we're not making enough progress in degrading and defeating ISIS."

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High Stakes Offensive

10:44 AM, May 28, 2015

CNN is reporting:

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Tough Going in Anbar

7:59 AM, May 27, 2015

Sinan Salaheddin of the AP reports:

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Rand Says Republicans 'Created' ISIS

6:52 AM, May 27, 2015

Kentucky senator Rand Paul says the "hawks" in the Republican party helped create and grow the Islamic State terrorist group. Paul, who is running for president, appeared Wednesday morning on MSNBC, where host Joe Scarborough asked him about fellow senator Lindsey Graham's own likely White House bid.

"Graham would say ISIS exists because of people like Rand Paul who said, 'Let's not go into Syria.' What do you say to Lindsey?" said Scarborough.

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