Hamudi: Iraqi Spies to be Placed in Embassies Abroad
AIPAC Boos Pelosi on Iraq Withdrawal
Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi got booed at the conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee when she called for a US withdrawal from Iraq.
I don’t have a link for it, but some journalists maintained that the audience at AIPAC was also cool to Vice President Richard Bruce Cheney’s hawkish pronouncements.
Update: The articles noting coolness to Cheney’s more hawkish pronouncements on Iraq are here and also here.
The CNN correspondent did not see it that way.
The Iraqi government is trying to expel nearly 4000 Iranian terrorist cultists, members of the People’s Mojahedin (MEK). The Bush administration is using them the same way Saddam did, to spy on and make trouble for Iran, and has coddled them even though the State Department lists them as a terrorist organization. The MEK is highly disciplined and fairly wealthy and has corrupted a number of members of the US Congress.
In Iraq, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki visited the Sunni Arab stronghold of Ramadi. Although the US press is describing Ramadi as pacified, I fear they are being overly optimistic. Al-Maliki flew there in a US military helicopter, and US troops stationed near there had imposed a curfew on the city that forbade citizens to circulate in the streets, just the day before. I.e. this photo-op visit is bogus and can only take place because the US military is managing it so as to produce an image of pacification.
There was recently a big demonstration in Ramadi against the US military for holding a local woman as a detainee. On March 4, I reported, “Huge Bomb at Ramadi Kills 12, Wounds 22.” On February 27, I wrote: “In Ramadi, a major Sunni Arab city west of Baghdad, a suicide bomber used ambulance to attack a police station, killing 14 and wounding 10. Al-Hayat reports in Arabic that the Sunni imam of the Mu’awiya Mosque in Ramadi was killed on Monday, as part of an ongoing conflict between tribal forces and “al-Qaeda” (Salafi Jihadis) in al-Anbar.’ Etc., etc. The guerrillas who planned these operations out have not turned over a new leaf all of a sudden.
The US press is so busy looking for signs of improvement that they have already forgotten about the slaughter of hundreds of Shiite pilgrims just last week, and are interpreting the relative calm of Sunday and Monday as some sort of turning point. Unlikely.
In fact on Wednesday it was reported that police had found 17 bodies in the streets of Baghdad. A judge was assassinated in broad daylight. Guerrillas fired katyushas at the posh Karrada district. Militiamen shot 4 men at a Sunni mosque in the southern Risala district. In the northern city of Mosul, police found 4 bodies. There were scattered bombings and assassinations elsewhere in the country.
Al-Zaman reports in Arabic that Iraqi parliamentarian Humam Hamudi said yesterday in London that the Iraqi government planned to put intelligence officers into its embassies abroad to gather information on networks that were recruiting volunteers to go fight jihad in Iraq.
Another MP, Sami al-Askari, said that parliamentary immunity would soon be stripped from a number of deputies in the national legislature, so that they could be investigated for ties to death squad activity. He said that this is at the request of PM Nuri al-Maliki.
Earlier this month, Iran had seemed to be willing to extend for another year permission to one million Afghan refugees to remain in that country. Now, al-Zaman is reporting in Arabic that Iran is thinking of expelling them, as a way of putting pressure on the Afghanistan government (and perhaps on the Bush administration?) Hawks in Washington most often forget how helpful Iran was to the US in Afghanistan, and do not realize how much mischief Iran could make there if pressed too hard.