Saturday, April 21, 2018

Review Fukuyama, Francis, America at the Crossroads, Democracy, Power, and the Neoconservative Legacy

Review Fukuyama, Francis, America at the Crossroads, Democracy, Power, and the Neoconservative Legacy, Yale University Press: New Haven and London, 2006

Neoconservatives were one of the main groups behind the 2003 invasion of Iraq providing much of the ideological justification for the war. The term was thrown around a lot in the media, yet few actually knew what it was about. For example, there was some talk about Leo Strauss and graduates from the University of Chicago where he taught, but what that meant in real terms or how it related to the Iraq war were largely left unexplained. That’s the reason why Francis Fukuyama’s America at the Crossroads, Democracy, Power, and the Neoconservative Legacy is important because it provides a short and concise summary and analysis of just what neoconservatism is and how it was connected to Iraq.

This Day In Iraqi History - Apr 21

1802 Wahabi army from Arabia sacked Karbala 2,000-5,000 killed
1917 Battle of Istabulat in Diyala started between British and Ottomans with
            the Turks being defeated
1926 Turks told British it no longer wanted Mosul just a stake in the province’s oil
(Musings On Iraq article on how Mosul province became part of Iraq)
1941 Hitler told military aid to Iraq could only be delivered by air and that would require
            stop in Syria which would need approval of Vichy France
1941 Hitler got intel of large British forces in Iraq and more arriving so was skeptical
            of providing aid to Gaylani govt
1981 Kuwait gave Iraq $2 bil interest free loan to help pay for Iran-Iraq War
1991 Iraqi govt forces began attack on southern marshes in Maysan Basra and Dhi Qar
            to root out rebels
2002 Telegraph reported Iraq supported Ansar al-Islam Al Qaeda affiliate in Kurdistan
2003 CPA created to take over running Iraq for US replacing ORHA
2003 ORHA staff and head Garner entered Baghdad Gen Franks had kept them out He
            didn’t want civilians to get in way of military
2003 Rumsfeld took advice of Gen Franks and cancelled sending 50,000 additional
            troops to Iraq from 1st Cavalry Div
2003 5,000 Sadrists protested arrest of its cleric Fartusi by U.S.
2003 NY Times article claimed Iraq had destroyed WMD right before war and moved
rest to Syria Story proved false
2003 NY Times article said Iraqi scientist told Americans Iraq had been working on
            WMD for years and led US soldiers to banned precursors
2003 Foreign Sec Straw told Blair he was skeptical evidence of Iraq’s WMD wound be
            found Thought it might be destroyed
2003 Iraqi scientist told US Iraq had destroyed WMD equipment right before invasion
            Had sent some to Syria since 90s Worked with Al Qaeda Story false
2003 2 US congressmen went to Syria and got Assad’s promise not to harbor any
            Baathists and expel those that tried to flee there
2004 Car bombs in Basra City killed more than 70
2004 CIA analyst told Congress no working relationship between Iraq and Al Qaeda
2006 United Iraqi Alliance nominated Dawa’s Nouri al-Maliki as new PM Mahmoud
            Mashadani of Accordance Front would become Speaker of Parliament
2008 Oil Minister objected to Kurds’ independent oil deals
2008 U.S .general said if Sadr didn’t hold back Mahdi Army US would fight them
2009 Sahwa in Adhamiya put “X”s on houses of displaced Shiites and told them
            not to come back
2010 State of Law said Sadr reason no new govt after elections because Sadr opposed
            to Maliki 2nd term
2011 Human Rights Watch report Govt arrested and tortured protesters in
            Baghdad and held some in secret prison at Muthanna Airport
2011 Drive by shooting on opposition radio station that supported protests in
2011 2 offices of Kurdistan Islamic Group attacked in Sulaymaniya
2011 Lawyers protested in Fallujah demanding US withdrawal and release of prisoners
2011 Clash in Mosul as army tried to stop demonstration
2011 Maliki told US joint chiefs head Adm Mullen ISF could handle security after
            US withdrawal
2011 5,000 Sadrists held march in Basra to commemorate formation of Mahdi Army
2013 Maliki blamed anti-govt protests for increase in violence in country
2013 Protest leader in Hawija said army had arrested 114 demonstrators after
            checkpoint was attacked and 1 soldier killed
2015 Pres Barzani and other KRG politicians complained about PKK being in Sinjar
            Claimed trying to take over district

View the Iraq History Timelines 

Friday, April 20, 2018

Iraq Delays New Round Of Auctions For Oil-Gas Fields

April 15, 2018, Iraq’s Oil Ministry was scheduled to take bids for eleven oil and gas fields along the Iranian and Kirkuk borders as well as offshore in the Persian Gulf. The Ministry was also rolling out a new contract for foreign energy companies, which they were supposed to receive two days before the auction. The new deals included linking oil prices to remuneration fees to the companies to try to mitigate against the constant ebb and flow in the international energy market. The introduction of new terms with a rushed bidding process was criticized, but 14 companies still showed interest. The Oil Ministry eventually backed down and delayed the auctions until April 25, so that it could continue changing the contracts. It likely took the advice that it was trying to push things ahead too quickly and taking more time would help all those involved.

This Day In Iraqi History – Apr 20

1921 Churchill wrote Iraq High Comm Cox that Feisal needed to be told all
British would be out of Iraq by end of year unless he gave up demands for more power
1941 Churchill told For Sec Eden that British troops landed in Iraq to establish a
            base in Basra to establish control of province
1948 Operation Hametz began with Jewish forces attacking Arab villages held by Iraqi
            volunteers in 1st Arab-Israeli War
1970 Bakr govt restored citizenship to Patriach of Assyrian community
1987 Iraq agreed to allow UN team to visit and investigate its use of chemical weapons
            in Iran-Iraq War
1988 End of last war of cities Iran-Iraq War Iraq fired 200 missiles at Iran killing
            2000 Iran fired 77 missiles at Iraq
1988 End of 3rd Anfal campaign that targeted PUK in Sulaymaniya Civilians were
            rounded up and put into camps Mass executions
(Musings On Iraq article on Anfal campaign)
1991 Bush White House didn’t think Saddam was going to be overthrown anymore
            after Gulf War
1991 SCIRI claimed it started attacks upon govt forces in southern Iraq Came after
            Shiite revolt put down
1991 Kurds went to Baghdad to hold talks with Saddam to end revolt
1991 500 Marines landed in Kurdistan to set up safe-haven for displaced Kurds
2002 Gen Franks briefed Bush on Iraq war plans Franks said he wanted to cut timeline
            by 1/3 and could start with 180,000 troops
2003 US forces arrested Sadrist cleric Fartusi leading to days of protests
2003 ORHA head Garner held meeting Said top priority was getting to Baghdad and
            establishing its presence
2003 ORHA head Garner said when staff got to Baghdad had to get Iraqi ministries
            up and running
2003 ORHA staff finally allowed to enter Iraq by US military
2003 Report US wanted long term military relationship with Iraq and use of up to 4
2003 Report Kurds expelled 2000 Arabs from Daquq, Kirkuk
2003 Apr 10-20 up to 40 people killed in Arab-Kurd violence in Kirkuk city
2003 UnderSecDef Feith cancelled State Dept plan to set up Kirkuk committee to
            return displaced set up compensation etc
2004 US forces surrounded Najaf that was under control of Mahdi Army
2006 Jaafari stepped down as Iraq’s premier under pressure from Sadr Kurds US
            Said he wouldn’t give up office until Ayatollah Sistani told him to
2007 ISI sent letter to Ansar al-Sunnah apologizing for past attacks and asking for
            unification Ansar said no
2007 Ramadi sheikhs said they would turn Awakening into political party to run in
            09 provincial elections
2007 Abu Sheibani captured by US Was deputy of network that delivered EFPs from
Iran to militias
(Musings On Iraq interview with Galen Wright of Arkenstone blog on on Iranian arms shipments to Iraqi militias) 
2008 Sadr said he gave final warning to Baghdad to stop offensive against his
2008 Report that Thar Allah head Sinawi executed in Baghdad after being
            captured in Basra during Charge of Knights
2009 Kurdish Alliance complained about Hadbba rule in Ninewa excluding them
2009 Suicide bomber in Iraqi army uniform attacked US soldiers visiting Baquba
            mayor killing 11
2011 Mass grave found in Anbar with more than 800 bodies in it Victims of
2011 Arab League delayed summit in Baghdad due to Iraqi govt complaints
            about crackdown in Bahrain against Shiites
2011 Independent TV station and a Kurdish poet said they were attacked by security
            forces during crackdown on protests
2011 Protest in Fallujah demanded withdrawal of ISF after man killed by army
2012 Oil Min said Exxon could continue work at West Qurna oil field despite signing
oil deal with Kurds
2012 Sadr met with KRG PM Barzani in Tehran to talk about removing Maliki
2012 Pres Barzani gave speech saying power sharing agreement after 2010 elections
            was dead due to Maliki
2012 Pres Barzani speech said that PKK would not be tolerated if continued to use
2012 Maliki called Turkey a hostile country
2013 Provincial elections held in 12 of Iraq’s 18 provinces No voting in KRG or
            Ninewa, Kirkuk and Anbar
2014 Anbar Ops Command announced offensive to retake Fallujah while Anbar
            council said no op started
2015 IS held ceremony where Ramadi sheikhs gave it baya
2015 80 Anbar sheikhs called on Abadi to provide more military aid and called
            on Hashd to help fight in province

Thursday, April 19, 2018

PM Abadi’s Nasr List Opens National Campaign With Candidates In Kurdistan

Part of Prime Minister Haidar Abadi’s election campaign is hinged upon being a nationalist leader who represents all of Iraq. As part of that stance his Nasr list has opened offices in Kurdistan and plans on running candidates there.

This Day In Iraqi History – Apr 19

1916 German commander of the Ottoman forces in Mesopotamia Gen Goltz
            died of typhoid
1920 Start of San Remo meeting with Britain France Italy and Japan Decided on split
            up of Ottoman Empire and creation of Iraq
1922 Colonial Sec Churchill said King Feisal’s demand that mandate be dropped from        Iraq impossible under League of Nations that created mandate
(Musings On Iraq article on Churchill’s views on Mesopotamia)
1941 British 20th Inf Brigade finishes its landing in Basra and 7 planes flown into
            Habaniya airbase
1969 Iraq expelled Shiites claiming they were Iranians Backed Iran dissident groups
            Claimed Khuzistan due to Shah voiding 1937 Shatt al-Arab Treaty
1981 Revolutionary Command Council member Tariq Aziz said he hoped for better
            relations with US but skeptical it would happen
1983 Baath meeting in Amara over army desertions in southern Iraq Came up with
            military operation to arrest them
1990 White House rejected limiting high-tech exports to Iraq that could be used for
1990 Saddam met with Yasser Arafat and discussed retaliatory attacks upon Israel and
            US if Iraq was attacked
(Musings On Iraq article on Saddam’s motivation for threatening Israel before the Kuwait invasion)
2002 UK intel report Iraq not seen as a threat in Middle East except by Kuwait
2003 Protest in Baghdad’s Adhamiya against U.S. occupation
2003 Gen Mattis said that U.S. didn’t have enough troops to secure Iraq
2003 Turkey threatened to send troops if Kurds took over Kirkuk
2004 Marines and Fallujah leaders worked out deal for insurgents to turn over heavy
2005 Report US intel discussed what torture techniques they could use on Iraqi
            prisoners in Aug 03 including electrocution
2006 NGO Survey found 19,548 kidnappings from Jan to April 2006
2006 KRG parliament proposed creating Natural Resource Ministry to run region’s
            oil industry
2007 ISI announced that Abu Ayub al-Masri was War Minister
2008 Sadr said he would continue to fight US and Maliki until stopped operations
            against his group
2008 ISF took Sadr stronghold in Hayaniya, Basra Fighting in Nasiriya as well
2008 Al Qaeda’s Muhajir called on Sunni Iraqis to unite behind ISI
2010 State of Law called for revote after lost to Iraqiya Charged fraud but no
irregularities found
2011 Protest in Diwaniya over better work conditions broken up by police
2011 Sulaymaniya govt banned all demonstrations in city after protests broken up
            day before
2012 Anbar councilman said province would move towards federal region
2012 ISI set off car bombs in Baghdad Kirkuk Samarra Baquba, Dibis 35 killed
            more than 100 wounded
2012 After meeting Pres Barzani Turkish officials accused Maliki of spreading
2013 Checkpoint outside Hawija protest site attacked 1 soldier killed Led to stand
            off between 2 sides
2013 Hawija site was run by Naqshibandi that wanted to provoke confrontation with
            ISF to push demonstrators towards violence
2014 Head of Ninewa Operations Command accused of extorting money and arresting
            people for ransom
2014 Protest in Baghdad and other provinces for reform

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Ziad Qatan, Allawi Govt Defense Official Wanted For Corruption Extradited By Jordan

On April 15, 2018, a former Defense Ministry official under Prime Minister Iyad Allawi was extradited by Jordan. In September 2017, a Jordanian court approved Ziad Qatan’s deportation to Iraq, and he was arrested in January 2018. He finally arrived in Baghdad in April to coincide with the 6th ministerial conference of the Arab Network for the Promotion of Integrity and Combating Corruption. Premier Haidar Abadi’s office trumpeted his detention as a sign that the government was following through with its promise to fight corruption. That is a main part of the PM’s re-election campaign. Ziad Qatan is accused of stealing up to $800 million during the Allawi period.

This Day In Iraqi History – Apr 18

1919 France and England signed Long-Berenger oil deal France got 20% of Iraqi
            oil via Turkish Petroleum Company
1919 France agreed to help build oil pipeline from Iraq to Mediterranean
1941 Britain landed 20th Infantry Brigade in Basra in response to PM Gaylani and Golden
            Square officers coup
1941 British battalion from India completed deployment to Shaiba air base in Basra
1941 PM Gaylani asked Italian Amb if Axis would give Iraq military aid against
            British and Axis air power 1st time Iraq asked for military intervention from Axis
1980 Iran said Baath at war with Islam and called on Iraqi army and people to
            overthrow Saddam
1984 Iraq escalated its attacks on tankers heading for Iran
1988 Iraq recaptured Fao Peninsula, Basra using chemical weapons
1991 Report 500-1,000 displaced Kurds were dying a day along Iraq-Turkey border
1991 Saddam agreed to UN setting up offices in Iraq to help displaced following
            Shiite and Kurdish uprisings
1991 Iraq provided first disarmament declaration to UN Was incomplete and hid
            lots of activities like nuke and WMD programs
1996 State Dept official Deutsch went to Kurdistan to try to broker ceasefire in
            PUK-KDP civil war
2002 CIA report said Iraq might have been able to make chemical weapons since
2003 Sadrists held demonstration in Sadr City to condemn U.S. and western culture
2003 Some American officials worried that Iraq had sent its WMD to other countries
            That’s why wasn’t found
2003 INC head Chalabi said he expected an interim govt to be formed soon to run most
            duties in Iraq
2003 Rumsfeld said it would take time to find Iraq’s WMD
2003 Arabs that were expelled from Daquq Kirkuk by Kurds tried to retake town but
            driven off by Kurds
2004 Bremer admitted that Iraqi forces would not be able to deal with insurgency
            on their own when sovereignty returned in June 05
2004 Spain’s new PM Zapatero announced he would withdraw 1300 troops from Iraq
2004 British report said Coalition troops and Iraqi police would soon restore law and
            order in Iraq
2006 Report CPA plan to disarm and integrate militias never funded and followed
            through with
2007 Baghdad bombings killed almost 200
2008 50 soldiers fled their posts in Sadr City rather than fight Mahdi Army
2008 Sadrist said Mahdi Army might disarm if Badr Brigade did the same
2008 Al Qaeda’s Zawahiri speech said US had been defeated in Iraq
2008 Shiekh Abu Risha complained that authorities were trying to stop his organizing
            for 09 provincial elections by shutting down offices
2008 Suicide truck bomb hit funeral for Sahwa members killing 50 in Baghdad
2009 US and British officials went to Jordan to talk with ex-Gen Hamdani to
            talk about reconciliation with former regime members
2010 U.S. and Iraqi forces killed ISI leaders Abu Masri and Abu Omar al-Baghdadi
            near Tikrit
(Musings On Iraq interview with Naval War College’s Prof Whiteside on who Abu Omar al-Baghdadi was)
2011 Parliament repealed Article 136(b) that allowed ministers to stop corruption
2011 Anbar anti-terror police arrested 12 officers involved with insurgents Some were
            working with Syrian intelligence
2011 Protest in Mosul Baghdad other areas calling for better services Some said
            Maliki should step down
2011 Kurdish security forces moved to evict protesters from Sulaymaniya Police
            fired into crowd wounding 6, 1 died, another 90 hurt by beatings
2011 Kurdish court sentenced spokesman for Sulaymaniya protests to one month
            in jail for defaming a KRG MP
2011 Were first protests in Irbil Were beaten by police 22 wounded
2012 Oil Min Shahristani said Exxon would not start working in KRG until Baghdad
            approved contract Exxon went ahead anyway
2014 ISIS commander killed fighting Ansar al-Sunna in Rashad, Kirkuk
2014 Anbar council asked if ISF were competent enough to retake Fallujah
2014 Former Diyala governor and Mutahidun MP said militias were trying to take over
Mukhisa and force people out of town
2014 Maliki gave speech in Babil calling for majority govt after elections
2015 Khorasani Brigade pledged allegiance to Ayatollah Khamenei and said it
            followed valayat al-faqih Same time said didn’t take orders from Iran
2015 Govt claimed it fully controlled Baiji Refinery but IS still held sizeable amount
            of complex

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Security In Iraq, Apr 8-14, 2018

After a major dip in violence in the first week of April the Islamic State was back to work from April 8-14, 2018. Incidents were back to what they have been for most of the year. There was also on going fighting between Turkey and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in northern Kurdistan.

This Day In Iraqi History – Apr 17

1916 British took Beit Asia from Ottomans and pushed Turks out of Edheim
            River in Diyala
1921 UK High Comm in Iraq Sir Cox exiled Sayid Talib to Ceylon because he aspired
            to be king and opposed Feisal for position
1941 PM Gaylani asked Germany for military aid in case of war with British
1941 British naval convoy moved towards Shatt al-Arab waterway in Basra
1941 British battalion from India started arriving at Shaiba air base in Basra
1963 Iraq made initial agreement for union with Egypt
1966 Abd Rahman Arif elected president to replace his brother who died in
            helicopter crash
1983 Iran’s Op Wa al-Fajr to cut Basra-Baghdad road in Maysan failed
1983 Saddam invited Ayatollah Khomeini to Baghdad for Islamic conference to try to
            end Iran-Iraq War
1991 British intel report said Iraq had around 600 ballistic missiles left after Gulf
1991 US forces began moving into Kurdistan to set up camps for displaced
1991 Germany agreed to $262 mil in humanitarian aid to Kurds
1993 During military operation against Kurds Iraqi army arrested 7,000 people
            including members of Kurdistan parliament
2001 US Dept of Energy report said didn’t have enough info to tell whether Iraq had
            restarted its nuclear program
2003 Chief UN inspector Blix cited Iraqi scientist who said Iraq had no WMD
2003 CENTCOM head Gen Abizaid said no organized military left
            in Iraq Plan was for Iraqi military to impose order after invasion
2003 CENCTOM head Gen Abizaid suggested US create 3 divisions of interim
            Iraqi army from soldiers and opposition groups
2003 US officials said 3 new Iraqi divisions needed to be formed to protect country
            after US invasion
2003 US signed deal with Bechtel to repair Iraq’s electrical grid after instead of before
2003 ORHA head Garner got into argument with Gen Franks who didn’t want Garner
            going to Baghdad Garner said vacuum in country
2003 US forces called for people to return to work in Kirkuk City after days of unrest
            after city taken during invasion
2003 US forces captured Saddam’s half brother Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti
2004 3,000 police abandoned posts during insurgent and Sadrist uprisings
2006 Ret Gen Newbold former Director of Ops at Joint Chiefs wrote Time OpEd saying
            Iraq war unnecessary
2007 Islamic Army complained ISI was trying to take over Diyala by threats and
2007 ISI head Abu Omar Baghdadi issued message calling for unity amongst
            insurgents Said ISI would remain despite any criticism
2008 Govt said it would recruit local Shiites from Sadr City and Shula into security
            forces to try to break hold of Mahdi Army
2008 Army officer complained many of his commanders were pro-Sadr and would
            give info to Mahdi Army
2008 Sadrist spokesman said Mahdi Army wouldn’t disarm unless top clerics told
            them to
2008 Badr’s Hadi Ameri said that only Al Qaeda and Mahdi Army were fighting govt
2011 Ninewa Gov Nujafi joined anti-govt protests in Mosul and broke curfew imposed
            by Ninewa Ops Command to try to stop demonstration
2011 Around 90 injured in clashes between Kurdish security forces and protesters
            in Sulaymaniya 7 shot
2011 Sadrist MP said ISF was capable of defending country without US help and
            blamed US for all of Iraq’s problems
2012 Sadrists accused Sate of Law of trying to cancel elections so it could stay in power
            Said was why Election Comm head was arrested
2012 Maliki’s adviser on Kurdish Affairs Adel Barwari removed from post
2012 Maliki accused Kurds of smuggling oil to Iran
2013 KRG said it was ready to export oil to Turkey directly when it finished its
2014 IS attacked Al Qaeda saying that it was no longer leader of jihad
2014 Insurgents blew up pipeline in Baiji leading to large oil spill contaminating
            water all the way to Baghdad
2014 KDP and Gorran said they had agreement to form new government in KRG
2015 Police and councilman in Ramadi said IS had almost taken center of city IS began
            attacking Ramadi city center Albu Alwan sheikh said city could fall any time
2016 Sadrists restarted protests in Baghdad demanding new cabinet to be voted on