Foreign Policy Blogs

Iraq

Signs of Reconstruction in Iraq Continue with the Rebuilding of the Golden Dome Mosque

February, 2006: Shi’a Iraqis sift through the rubble of the al-Askariyya, or Golden Dome Mosque in Samarra, Iraq in order to find remnants of their religious texts.  The city lies in rubble from the supposed al-Qaeda bombing (although no one actually claimed responsibility for the attack).  One of the most internationally important Shi’a mosques is […]

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Friend or Foe? Oil Companies strike deals with Iraq

The latest news involving Iraqi reconstruction revolves around just one word: oil.  (Reported on Informed Comment) Both UK newspapers, The Independent and The Guardian, published stories today about recent foreign oil company deals with Iraq.  The articles discuss the new contracts negotiated by Exxon Mobil, Total, Shell and BP (amongst others) for “repair and technical support.”  The contracts […]

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McCain attacked for saying US troop withdrawal from Iraq "Not important"

McCain attacked for saying US troop withdrawal from Iraq "Not important"

  John McCain's Interview on NBC's The Today Show (YouTube excerpt) If you’ve had any contact with the media this week, I’m sure you haven't been able to escape comments made about John McCain's interview on NBC's The Today Show.  As I’m sure you all can tell by now, I have no plan on voting republican in the next […]

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US v. Iran: Round 347

The biggest news story at the beginning of the week involving Iraq is that of Iraqi-Iranian talks over the weekend.  BBC reported that Nuri al-Maliki (Iraqi PM) discussed security issues with Iranian President, Ahmadinejad.  This included Iraqi desire to stop Iranian backing for Iraqi Shi’a groups and Iran's concern over Iraq's constant chaos.  Also on […]

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A Lucrative War?

It seems that talk of Blackwater and other mercenary organizations in Iraq has subsided over the past year (while searching the New York Times, the most recent articles I found on the subject were Mike Nizza's “The Lede” blogs from 2007).  At least that's what has happened in the US; abroad it's a different story.  The […]

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Editorial round-up plus our very own news anchors

Here's an interesting op-ed by Fouad Ajami in today's Wall Street Journal. An ardent supporter of the Iraq war since the beginning, Ajami harshly criticizes Scott McClellan's accusations towards the Bush administration. He also says, “With the luxury of hindsight, the critics of the war now depict the arguments made for it as a case […]

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Australian troops leave Iraq

Australian soldiers are leaving Iraq as of Sunday, June 1, which fulfills the election promises of the current government. This comes on the heels of an interesting article in The Times last week, where Australian soldiers said they were ‘ashamed’ at their lack of frontline role in both Afghanistan and Iraq. The article comes from […]

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Al-Qaeda being defeated?

According to the latest statements by CIA director Michael Hayden in today's Washington Post, Al-Qaeda's influence and popularity is on the downturn. He says that they do not have the influence that they once had, and that the Iraq invasion providing a platform for increasing their popularity has degraded considerably. Although this blog focuses solely […]

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The Price of the Surge by Steven Simon

A recent article by Steven Simon in the Foreign Affairs journal is quite an interesting read. It can be read here at RealClearPolitics. The main points of the article are as follows: There should be a distinction made between the Iraqi Sunni insurgents who are nationalists and Al-Qaeda members who poured in from foreign countries […]

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British troops in Basra for the long term

After General Petraeus’ meeting at 10 Downing Street with Defense Secretary Des Browne and Sir Jock Stirrup (defense chief of staff), the general agreement was that the 4,000 strong British troop contingent would remain stationed outside of Basra for the time being. When asked about a specific time range the General replied, “The answer right […]

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Good morning, Baghdad

Iraq awoke to a statement by the Multi National Forces that Al-Qaeda in Iraq is planning more and more suicide and car bombings, specifically stolen ambulances. The one district that is specifically mentioned is the Karakh district of Baghdad. The US military has announced that it has intelligence to this effect. This is the day […]

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Over 1,300 dismissed in Basra, NSA Hadley condemns Iran.

The New York Times has a great piece on the dismissal of 1,300 soldiers and policemen in the wake of the Basra offensive. Stephen Farrell writes that there have been revelations “more than 1,000 members of the security forces had laid down their weapons during the fight“. There were a multitude of reasons behind the […]

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Iraq Town Hall: Are we winning?

[kml_flashembed movie=”http://video.google.com/googleplayer.swf?docid=-296515809464153035″ width=”400″ height=”326″ wmode=”transparent” /] The video I’m posting is of the Iraq Town Hall that was put on by the Foreign Policy Association, last week in New York City. The panelists are Dr. Fred Kagan, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute specializing in defense issues and the US military. He is […]

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Continuing Battle for the South: Basra

According to several media reports, the battle of Basra is NOT going well. Just a few hours ago, militants blew up a crude oil pipeline. An act of retaliation, this is part of a tenacious fight that the Sadrists are putting up in the south of the country. The Iraqi and US forces have a […]

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Basra's continuing deterioration, Part II

In Part One, I discussed the likelihood of the British contingent staying on in Basra past their pull-out dates because of continuing instability in the province and city. The big parties that are fighting for dominance are the Fadhila party (a smaller Shi’ite party), the Sadrists, and the followers of the Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council […]

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