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Tag: Sunni


Is the Sunni-Shiite Slaughter at Jurf al-Sakhr in Iraq Really a U.S. Victory?

Apparent good news was announced on Sunday in the fight against the extremist Islamic State organization: The Iraqi army, backed by fundamentalist Shiite militias, managed to take the village of Jurf al-Sakhr, southwest of Baghdad, from IS fighters.

Posted on Oct 28, 2014 READ MORE



The Wider Appeal of Islamic State and Sunni Grievances

In a worrisome development, radicals throughout the region are rallying to the so-called Islamic State, which is actually just a bunch of armed thugs and brigands.

Posted on Oct 13, 2014 READ MORE



Apocalypse Now, Iraq Edition

As someone who cares deeply about this country, I find it beyond belief that Washington has again plunged into the swamp of the Sunni-Shiite mess in Iraq. A young soldier now deployed as one of the 1,600 non-boots-on-the-ground there might have been 8 years old when the 2003 invasion took place. What happened in the blink of an eye?

Posted on Sep 25, 2014 READ MORE



The U.S. Army (CC BY 2.0)

Shiite Militias of Iraq Reject U.S. Return, Threaten to Attack U.S. Forces

The pan-Arab, London-based daily Al-Sharq al-Awsat (The Middle East) reports that the major Shiite militias of Iraq are denouncing Prime Minister Haydar al-Abadi for welcoming U.S. air support in the fight against the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

Posted on Sep 18, 2014 READ MORE



Truthdigger of the Week: Patrick Cockburn

The Irish reporter has written the definitive primer on the Middle East’s most ferocious and ambitious new pretenders to power: the Islamic State.

Posted on Aug 30, 2014 READ MORE



Iraq: Bombs and Bullets vs. Political Process

A series of bombings and shootings left some 35 dead in Iraq on Saturday, after a massacre of 68 worshippers Friday at a Sunni mosque in mixed Diyala Province.

Posted on Aug 25, 2014 READ MORE



AP/Hatem Moussa

How the Brutalized Become Brutal

The beheading of a U.S. reporter, Hamas’ executions of suspected collaborators and fundamentalists’ slaughters in Iraq are the end of a long horror story, not the beginning.

Posted on Aug 24, 2014 READ MORE



Why Washington’s War on Terror Failed: The Underrated Saudi Connection

By continuing contradictory policies in Iraq and Syria, the U.S. has ensured that ISIS can reinforce its fighters in those countries and vice versa. So far, Washington has been successful in escaping blame for the rise of ISIS by putting all the blame on the Iraqi government. In fact, it has created a situation in which ISIS can survive and may well flourish.

Posted on Aug 22, 2014 READ MORE



Iraq Roundup: Al-Maliki’s Ouster, ISIS’ Onslaught and America’s Airstrikes

As of Tuesday, longtime Iraq Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki was on his way out, as the long-term outcome for his divided country seemed troubled at best.

Posted on Aug 12, 2014 READ MORE



Syrian Opposition: Baghdadi ‘Caliphate’ Lame Attempt to Take Spotlight Off His Crime Spree

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s proclamation of himself as “caliph” is rather like the grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan declaring himself the Holy Roman emperor.

Posted on Jul 2, 2014 READ MORE



U.N. Chief Warns Iraq Crisis Could Spill Across Borders

The Islamist militant onslaught in Iraq raises the specter of a sectarian conflict spilling across the embattled nation’s borders, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned Tuesday.

Posted on Jun 17, 2014 READ MORE



Meet Zalmay Khalilzad, ‘A Primary Architect of Iraq’s Current Misery’

“As jihadists everywhere celebrate their stunning victories in Mosul and Tikrit,” Andrew Cockburn writes at the website of Harper’s Magazine, “we can only hope that they accord due credit to a man who was indispensable to their success.”

Posted on Jun 16, 2014 READ MORE


Could U.S. Military Action Worsen Sectarian Conflict in Iraq?

As Sunni militants continue their march across the country, Secretary of State John Kerry acknowledged Monday that the U.S. is considering launching drone strikes in Iraq. “Democracy Now!” speaks with Iraqi-American political analyst Raed Jarrar for clarity on the developments.

Posted on Jun 16, 2014 READ MORE



Iraqi Law Would Legalize Marriage for 9-Year-Old Girls

Iraq has recently put forth a controversial draft law that would allow men to marry girls as young as 9 years old and force their wives to have sex without consent. Women would also not be able to leave the house without their husband’s permission.

Posted on Mar 29, 2014 READ MORE



Espen & Nille (CC BY-ND 2.0)

More Violence as Bomb Explodes in Baghdad

At least 37 people were killed and 42 injured when a suicide bomber struck a cafe in a Shiite neighborhood, officials say.

Posted on Oct 20, 2013 READ MORE



AP/Karim Kadim

Baghdad Lights Up in Ramadan Bomb Attacks

A string of bomb attacks has hit mainly Shiite neighborhoods of the Iraqi capital, killing at least 40 people during celebrations marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, the BBC reports.

Posted on Aug 10, 2013 READ MORE



Klearchos Kapoutsis (CC BY 2.0)

Iraqi Officials Fear Full Blown Civil War

After the deadliest month of political fighting in five years, Iraq appears to be sliding rapidly into a new civil war that “will be worse than Syria,” leaders say.

Posted on May 4, 2013 READ MORE



AP Photo

Sectarian Violence Undermines Syrian Regime

The Syrian government’s resort to Alawite death squads in recent weeks has pushed former supporters into the opposition.

Posted on Jun 17, 2012 READ MORE



Al Jazeera English (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Terror Rules at Bahrain’s Hospitals

Bahrain’s hospitals are becoming centers of terror and distrust as government officials use them to identify, torture and arrest protesters, doctors and nurses for their involvement in the ongoing uprising against the ruling Al Khalifa family.

Posted on May 22, 2012 READ MORE


Syria Has Seen Similar Bloodshed Before

History comes full circle in Syria. In February 1982, President Hafez al-Assad’s army stormed into the ancient cities to end an Islamist uprising.

Posted on Jul 5, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Khalid Mohammed

Some Former U.S. Allies in Iraq Reconsidering Loyalties

The U.S. troops that remain in Iraq after last summer’s withdrawal face some new challenges from within Iraqi factions, as some previously American-allied members of the Awakening Councils are apparently joining the ranks ... (continued)

Posted on Oct 16, 2010 READ MORE


Maliki
Wikimedia Commons

Iran Casts a Vote in Iraq

Shiite-dominated Iran has shifted its stance toward neighboring Iraq, backing Sunni inclusion in a new government in Baghdad and likely putting a damper on current Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s attempts to shape the new government.

Posted on Apr 11, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Alaa al-Marjani

25 Dead in Baghdad Shooting

In the early hours of Saturday morning, a group of men dressed as Iraqi army soldiers busted into five houses in a southern district of Baghdad, handcuffing up to 25 people and shooting them in the head.

Posted on Apr 3, 2010 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force / Staff Sgt. Jessica J. Wilkes

They Don’t Build Democracies Like They Used To

Iraq’s recent election was supposed to remove Nouri al-Maliki from power, but the prime minister, sounding rather like a Bond villain, declared “the game is still very much on.” Now a governmental commission created to keep Baathists out of public life says that on the night before the election it banned six candidates who went on to win.

Posted on Mar 29, 2010 READ MORE


Karachi attack
AP via YouTube

Suicide Attack Kills at Least 20 in Karachi

A suicide bomber struck a procession of Shiite Muslims in Karachi, Pakistan, on Monday as they commemorated the day of Ashura, a traditional day of mourning and remembrance of the Prophet Muhammad’s martyred grandson. According to the Los Angeles Times, 20 people were killed and dozens wounded in the blast—the third attack in three days in Pakistan.

Posted on Dec 28, 2009 READ MORE


Yemen
UNICEF Yemen

150,000 Yemenis Displaced in Conflict

An escalating conflict between Shiite rebels and Sunni government forces has displaced at least 150,000 people in the northern part of Yemen. Aid agencies are struggling to absorb the stream of civilians as a lack of supplies and internal politics exacerbate the problem.

Posted on Sep 25, 2009 READ MORE


Baghdad bombing
AP photo / Karim Kadim

Deadliest Bomb Strikes in Months Kill 78 in Iraq

Two suicide bomb explosions—one in central Baghdad and the other in Diyala province—killed at least 78 people on Thursday, according to the Associated Press, marking the worst day of violence in over a year.

Posted on Apr 23, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps / Lance Cpl. Sarah Furrer

Awakening on the Wrong Side of the Bed

The Awakening movement isn’t very happy these days. The U.S. has been paying Sunni militants to turn their guns from American soldiers to al-Qaida foreign fighters, a program that has been celebrated for reducing violence in Iraq and is now falling apart. In the words of one Sunni leader who spoke to NPR, “The Americans completely abandoned us.”

Posted on Mar 30, 2009 READ MORE



mexicanpictures.com

Back to the Future: U.S. to Arm Afghan Militias

Because it worked out so well the last time, the U.S. plans to arm Afghan militias in an effort to police the country. The Pentagon is presenting this plan—and the media are reporting it—as a spinoff of a successful strategy in Iraq, not a revival of the secret war that gave rise to Osama bin Laden and the Taliban.

Posted on Dec 23, 2008 READ MORE


Iraqi police in Ramadi
Flickr/Jim Gordon

Brokering a Fragile Peace in Iraq

A key overlooked fact about the much-ballyhooed “surge is working” argument in Iraq is that the U.S. military actually paid some former insurgents $10 a day to help American troops keep the peace in parts of the country. But what happens when that setup changes in volatile regions like Anbar?

Posted on Oct 21, 2008 READ MORE


Lebanon mourners
AP photo / Darko Bandic

Dramatic Return for the Living and the Dead

Yesterday [July 16] was the last day of the 2006 Lebanon war, the final chapter of Israel’s folly and Hizbollah’s hubris, a grisly day of corpse-swapping and refrigerated body parts and coffin after bleak wooden coffin on trucks crossing the Israeli border, which left old Ali Ahmed al-Sfeir and his wife, Wahde, stooped and broken with grief.

Posted on Jul 18, 2008 READ MORE


Iraq’s Mosul a ‘Ghost City’

Mosul looks like a city of the dead. American and Iraqi troops have launched an attack aimed at crushing the last bastion of al-Qa’ida in Iraq and in doing so have turned the country’s northern capital into a ghost town.

Posted on May 14, 2008 READ MORE


Baghdad power lines
AP photo / Samir Mizban

Baghdad’s Other Power Struggle

As one U.S. soldier tells Truthdig foreign correspondent Anna Badkhen, it’s not entirely a bad sign that residents of Baghdad’s Saidiyah neighborhood are complaining about their meager daily power allotment: A year earlier they were concerned about just staying alive.

Posted on May 11, 2008 READ MORE


Iraqis walking
warnewsradio.org

Business Stirs in a Walled Neighborhood

In this first installment in her series of stories from Iraq for Truthdig, veteran foreign correspondent Anna Badkhen reports about the civilian costs of war, life under occupation and the precarious state of a Baghdad burger joint.

Posted on May 9, 2008 READ MORE


Geoffrey Wheatcroft on ‘Muqtada’

In this first-ever biography of the religious leader many predict will take over Iraq after the Americans leave, Patrick Cockburn, one of the most respected correspondents in the Middle East, provides a dramatic look at a man Paul Bremer denounced as a “Bolshevik Islamist.”

Posted on May 9, 2008 READ MORE


Bush?s Parallel Universe

No, it’s not your imagination: The “debate” about Iraq, and I use the word loosely, becomes ever more surreal as the occupation drags on.

Posted on Apr 10, 2008 READ MORE


More Trouble for Iraq’s PM

Iraq’s Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki faced a crisis last week when 1,000 to 1,500 of his troops, including from several dozen to more than 100 officers, refused to fight in the battle against Shiite militia members in Basra, raising questions about Iraqi security force readiness.

Posted on Apr 4, 2008 READ MORE


Protest in Sadr City
AP photo / Karim Kadim

Iraq Exploding as Shiite Fights Shiite

A new civil war may be looming in Iraq as American-backed Iraqi government forces battle Shiite militiamen for control of Basra and parts of Baghdad.

Posted on Mar 27, 2008 READ MORE


Iraqi man crying
AP photo / Hadi Mizban

War’s Harsh Echo

It was a violent Sunday in Iraq, as attacks of all stripes killed dozens and the U.S. death toll crossed 4,000. A day of suicide bombings, shootings and rocket and mortar attacks has cast yet another shadow over the “surge.”

Posted on Mar 23, 2008 READ MORE


McCain

McCain’s Militant Mixup

Presidential contender John McCain took a trip to the Middle East to showcase his foreign policy chops, so the opposition was particularly delighted that it was during such a demonstration that he committed this gaffe.

Posted on Mar 19, 2008 READ MORE


Mughniyeh coffin
AP photo / Hussein Malla

The Mughniyeh Enigma

Imad Mughniyeh was once America’s most-wanted terrorist, and his crimes were truly abhorrent. But his assassination, Ritter argues, will only lead to more violence.

Posted on Feb 26, 2008 READ MORE


militants
AP photo

The Calm Before the Conflagration

There’s an ugly secret behind the “success” of the surge: The United States is paying off Iraqi militants with weapons and cash. It’s a recipe for disaster, one that reminds Chris Hedges of “Yugoslavia before the storm.”

Posted on Feb 25, 2008 READ MORE


Tentative Security Gains in Baghdad?

The New York Times reports that in certain areas of Baghdad, such as the Dora neighborhood in the south of the city, residents are cautiously returning to their homes and attempting to resume some semblance of normal life by taking advantage of a recent lull in violence.  How long it will last, however, remains to be seen.

Posted on Nov 19, 2007 READ MORE


What Are We Fighting For?

It’s time that we subject the Iraq war to the same cost-benefit analysis that we are called upon to impose on other government endeavors. We are supposed to repeal or revise domestic programs that don’t work. Shouldn’t a troubled war policy be treated the same way?

Posted on Nov 15, 2007 READ MORE


Hashim
news.bbc.co.uk

U.S. Delaying Iraqi Executions?

For the first time in George W. Bush’s political life, a Bush government is trying not to have someone executed, or so it seems. Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has accused the U.S. of stalling the executions of three prominent prisoners, one of whom might have been in cahoots with the CIA during Saddam Hussein’s reign.

Posted on Nov 11, 2007 READ MORE


Sadiyah camp
AP photo / Wisam Sami

Front-Line View: Iraq Isn’t ‘Worth Another Soldier’s Life’

Here’s a good way we can all support our troops:  by listening to them when they tell us how the Iraq war is really going.  Take this account from Sgt. Victor Alarcon and others in his battalion, who in Saturday’s Washington Post give their frank, and stark, assessment of the situation in Baghdad’s Sadiyah district.

Posted on Oct 27, 2007 READ MORE


Biden
uncorrelated.com

Iraqis Unite Against Splitting the Nation

Sen. Joe Biden’s plan to divide Iraq along sectarian lines has had an unintended consequence: It has united much of the country, Shiite and Sunni alike, in opposition to the measure.

Posted on Sep 30, 2007 READ MORE


Coming Apart at the Seams

Gen. David Petraeus likes to describe the Iraq he envisions as a patchwork quilt. You establish security in a neighborhood over here, bring peace to a village over there, create more and more of these scraps of relative tranquility—and then stitch the heterogeneous pieces together. The problem is with the seams. They have a tendency to unravel.

Posted on Sep 14, 2007 READ MORE


The Iraqi View: ‘Surge’ Has Failed

The definition of “progress” in Iraq clearly depends upon whom you ask—while the Petraeuses and Crockers of the world are claiming that the U.S. troop “surge” is (slowly) showing signs of success, a BBC/ABC/NHK poll of 2,000 Iraqis suggests quite a different story.

Posted on Sep 11, 2007 READ MORE


Tag—It’s Your Problem

The next six months in Iraq are crucial—and always will be. That noise you heard Monday on Capitol Hill was the can being kicked further down the road leading to January 2009, when George W. Bush gets to hand off his Iraq fiasco to somebody else.

Posted on Sep 10, 2007 READ MORE


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