Most Iraqis, be they civilians, military personnel, or government officials, do not trust Americans.
At a base level, that makes all kinds of sense. After all, the US did launch what amounted to a unilateral invasion of the country just a little over a decade ago, and when it was all said and done, a dictator was deposed but it’s not entirely clear that Iraqis are better off for it.
ISIS controls key cities including the Mosul, the country’s second largest, and security is a daily concern for the populace. The Americans are still seen - rightly - as occupiers, and Washington’s unwillingness inability to effectively counter ISIS has created a culture of suspicion in which most Iraqis believe the US is in cahoots with the militants for what WaPo described as “a variety of pernicious reasons that have to do with asserting U.S. control over Iraq, the wider Middle East and, perhaps, its oil.”
Some of the distrust, the US contends, is fostered by Iran. Tehran wields considerable influence both within the Iraqi military and in political circles in Baghdad. When Ash Carter announced that the US was set to send an “expeditionary targeting force” to the country to assist in raids on Islamic State targets, PM Haider al-Abadi flatly rejected the proposal, saying that “Iraq does not need foreign ground combat forces on Iraqi land." Abadi rejected a similar Pentagon trial balloon involving Apaches helicopters last month.
Meanwhile, Tehran’s Shiite militias threatened to attack any US soldiers operating on Iraqi soil. “We will chase and fight any American force deployed in Iraq. Any such American force will become a primary target for our group. We fought them before and we are ready to resume fighting,” a spokesman for Kata'ib Hezbollah said. Similarly, influential Shiite lawmakers like the infamous Hakim al-Zamili have called on Abadi to seek direct military intervention from Moscow to expel foreign forces from the country.
Now, in the latest example of just how tenuous Washington’s grip on the region has become, the Iraqi parliament's Security and Defense Committee is calling for the review and cancellation of Baghdad’s security agreement with the US.
“The government and parliament need to review the agreement signed with the United States on security because the United States does not seriously care about its fulfillment,” committee member Hamid al-Mutlaq, a senior Sunni lawmaker told Sputnik on Wednesday. “We demand that it be annulled,” he added.
Who will fill the void you ask? You guessed it: ... read more at ZeroHedge