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Tag Archives: Iraq

Profiles of Leading Iranian-Backed Militias

Amir Toumaj, David Adesnik – FDD’s Iran Project Iran has built a network of Shiite militias, now fighting across the Middle East, whose fighters number in the tens of thousands. These militias include battle-hardened fighters as well as poorly trained recruits. They hail from countries across the Muslim world and have …

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Top adviser to Khamenei says Iran’s regional influence ‘inevitable’: Fars

The top adviser to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Thursday the country’s leadership had no intention of reining in its influence across the Middle East despite U.S. pressure to do so, the semi-official Fars news agency reported. U.S. President Donald Trump, who sees Iran as a rising …

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Iran Spends $16 Billion Annually to Support Terrorists and Rogue Regimes

David Adesnik – FDD “Leave Gaza, leave Lebanon, my life for Iran,” chanted a crowd of protesters at Tehran University. “Leave Syria, think of us!” demanded others. Iran does not disclose how much it spends supporting foreign “resistance” organizations and clients such as Bashar al-Assad, yet open-source reports suggest those efforts cost more than $16 billion …

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Iran May Double Down on Foreign Militias After Its ‘Victory’ Against the Islamic State

Farzin Nadimi – The Washington Institute On November 21, Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF), sent a letter to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei in which he declared victory over the Islamic State (IS) “caliphate” in Syria and Iraq. In his reply, Khamenei called …

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Iranian General Helped Iraqis Seize Kirkuk From U.S. Allies

by Ken Dilanian, Carol E. Lee and Vivian Salama (NBC News) A few days after the Trump administration announced a new, get-tough approach to Iran, one of that country’s top military commanders and the armed Shiite militias he supports played a key role in the seizure of an important Iraqi …

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Are Shia Dynamics in Iraq and Lebanon Turning Against Iran?

Hanin Ghaddar (The Washington Institute) Despite Hezbollah’s powerful influence over Lebanon, much of the country’s Shia community looks to the Iraqi holy city of Najaf for religious guidance and leadership. Although Najaf was never politically involved in Lebanon the way Iran is, the Shia institutions that call it home were …

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Under pressure to act against Kurds, Iraq has limited options

Ahmad Rasheed (Reuters) Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi faced calls on Tuesday to take measures ranging from an economic blockade to military action after Kurds voted in a referendum in support of independence. But he will need to proceed cautiously. Abadi has been trying to unite Iraq since he took …

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Tehran Seeks to Consolidate Power in Iraq in 2018

Michael Knights – The Cipher Brief Iran’s principal regional nemesis was removed when Saddam Hussein’s regime was overthrown by the United States in 2003. The new Iraq quickly fell under the leadership of powerful Shia Islamist parties, most of whom had sheltered in Iran to avoid Saddam’s persecution. One example is …

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Pro-Iranian Shiite factions lose popular support in Iraq

Ali Mamouri (Al Monitor) On Aug. 30, 308 Islamic State fighters along with 670 members of their families were allowed to evacuate from the Qalamoun area along the Lebanese-Syrian border to the town of Bou Kamal in Deir ez-Zor province near the Iraqi border. The operation was carried out using 16 buses and ambulances sent by …

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Reducing Iranian Influence in Iraq’s Security Forces

Michael Knights and Hamdi Malik (The Wahington Institute) On August 20, Iraq’s security forces began the battle for Tal Afar, a satellite city of Mosul still under Islamic State control. One of the most controversial aspects of the battle will be the role played by the predominantly Shia Popular Mobilization …

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