Top 5 Signs the US is de facto allied with Iran versus ISIL

By Juan Cole

1. Karen DeYoung points out that the siege of the Iraqi Shiite town of Amerli could not have been broken without the help of Shiite militiamen from the Badr Corps, the Salaam Brigades (Mahdi Army) and the extremist Asa’ib Ahl al-Haqq. The US essentially provided them close air support against the Salafi Jihadi “Islamic State” group.

2. US air strikes on ISIL in Iraq have alternated with Iranian air strikes on ISIL positions. It seems likely to me that the two air forces are coordinating in at least a minimal way, otherwise there would be a danger of them hitting each other rather than ISIL.

3. Qasem Sulaimani, the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ “Jersualem Brigade” or special forces, was at the Amerli front coordinating with Shiite forces– US air strikes in support of the Amerli campaign were in part helping the IRGC!

4. Iran was the first country to send extra arms to Iraqi Kurdistan after the fall of Mosul. Iran is close to the Kurds, and the efforts of the US to arm and protect from air Iraqi Kurdistan are simply a continuation of US policies in previous decades. The Kurds thus are being supported by both the US and Iran, which makes the two de facto allies.

5. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, is alleged to have just authorized Iranian forces to coordinate with American ones. The denials from other Iranian politicians are likely merely camouflage for a policy that would dismay Iran hardliners.


related video:

CCTV America: “Major strategic goals for Iran and US relations”

7 Responses

  1. William Hart

    – as Russia goes backward in time and strategy. What are implications for Iran/Russian relations and the Syrian pivot?

    • Russia and Iran both fear Sunni extremist movements. Russia wants its naval base in Syria preserved. So Russia seems to be slowly getting the US to move its way despite its misdeeds further west.

  2. This may be the future of American power in the world. Aligning clandestinely with anyone, friend or foe, whose interests coincide with ours at the moment. A vast improvement over the George W days of “bomb and invade”, but rather dangerous in a democracy that requires transparency and open discussion in order to function freely as originally intended.

  3. Previous support from Iran (e.g.: against the Taliban) didn’t keep our warmongers from attacking it when prompted by the tail that wags the American dog. Undoubtedly, the Iranians will have no illusions about this latest “partnership.”

  4. Somewhere Otto von Bismarck is very happy. But I’m very happy right here. The problem with doing it covertly is that it avoids confronting the American people about the reality that Iran (and Russia, and China) has a sphere of influence that is about as legally legitimate as the Monroe Doctrine. The road out of Iraq and Afghanistan is to accept that those states will do what we claim to want to do out of their logical self-interest.

  5. I’m still curious about any Saudi Arabia connections. ISIS are salafists, or wahabi, and Saudi Arabia has openly supported wahabism for years.
    So 2 things.
    This makes the theory that Saudi Arabia attacked the Muslim Brotherhood because they’re islamists false,
    and what are the connections between Saudi Arabian elite and ISIS.

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