"The Iranian penetration of Iraq was a long time in planning. On Sept. 9, 2002, with U.S. bases being readied in Kuwait, Supreme Leader Ayatullah Ali Khamenei summoned his war council in Tehran. According to Iranian sources, the Supreme National Security Council concluded, "It is necessary to adopt an active policy in order to prevent long-term and short-term dangers to Iran." Iran’s security services had supported the armed wings of several Iraqi groups they had sheltered in Iran from Saddam. Iranian intelligence sources say that the various groups were organized under the command of Brigadier General Qassim Sullaimani, an adviser to Khamenei on both Afghanistan and Iraq and a top officer in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps." Ware
"Brigadier General Sullaimani ordained in a meeting of his militia proxies in the spring of last year that "any move that would wear out the U.S. forces in Iraq should be done. Every possible means should be used to keep the U.S. forces engaged in Iraq."" Ware
"Secret British military-intelligence documents show that British forces are tracking several paramilitary outfits in Southern Iraq that are backed by the Revolutionary Guard. Coalition and Iraqi intelligence agencies track Iranian officers’ visits to Iraq on inspection tours akin to those of their American counterparts." Ware
Michael Ware is the best of the reporters working now in Iraq. His "reach" into the world of the coalition forces as well as that of the insurgents is impressive.
There has been a kind of coalition of silence in the world of the American media with regard to the obvious and growing influence of Iran in the Iraq of today. Most of the media are holed up in hotels in Baghdad afraid for their lives and happily collecting their hazardous duty bonuses while they wait for their "tour of duty" to end. Their principal sources of information have been coalition forces and embassy PR officals. These officials inevitably project the viewpoint of the US Government at the moment of discussion.
Until recently it has been the "received wisdom" of the US Government that Iraqi Shia are Iraqis first and always, and Shia in the same way that Americans are Presbyterians or Baptists. In other words, the US establishment, taking its clue from the US Government has maintained that Iraqi Shia would never let themselves be dominated by Iran because the Iranians are Persians and the Iraqi Shia are Arabs and never the two shall identify with each other. It has also been maintained that Iraqi Shia (and Sunnis) are so universally secular that they would "never" accept a theocratic state in Iraq, and most especially one aligned with Tehran.
What a crock!! First of all, the idea that you would accept as true the unverified statements of a group about themselves, (any group) is ludicrous. People lie about such matters to outsiders with great dependability. They are especially prone to lying about themselves when they perceive that they are talking to the gullible (us). Secondly, anyone who knows anything about the pre-war Shia population of Iraq knows that they were deeply divided between those who were secular and felt themselves primarily Iraqi (many of these were members of the Baath) and those who were always primarily Shia in loyalty and who resisted the influence of Iraqi nationalism. Many of these people went into exile in Iran and actually fought against Iraq in the Iran-Iraq War.
NOW. They’re Back!!!
Why did the US propagate the patent untruth of Iraqi Shia independence of spirit? Ask the Jacobins. It suited their purposes. Now this tissue of delusion and falsehood is collapsing.
Who will pay the price?
Our people pay the price. And will continue as long as troop strength is too low to carry out the mission. We should pull out of all cities, establish a nationwide curfew, and declare borders and open country free-fire zones. Re-task our people to control all transport routes – no more urban cop duty – and limit movement on roadways.
Let the Iraqi people police their own areas, and the “insurgents” come to us.
Wait a minute. Any changes would have to be approved in D.C., and none of the suits have ever worn a uniform. Ah, there’s the nut.
@the clerk – three month later all Iraqis would have starved and the empire could take out all the oil without bothering about these dark skin people.
a typical persian chess move, sacrifice the pawns in order that the rooks can move foreward.
Oh yeah! These are the guys who threw several hundred thousands of their minimally trained and gullible or faithful (depending on viewpoint)countrymen at the dug in forces of Iraq in the Iran-Iraq War. pl
I think it remains to be seen. As you said there have always been two views within Shia’s in Iraq. The first wants closer relations with Iran, the second sees themselves as Iraqi first. Traditionally, Iranian and Iraqi clerics have been at odds with one another in terms of their role vis a vis the established authority. Sistani belongs to the branch of Shia Islam that opposes the Iranian theocratic model. Alas, only time will tell.