2014 June 15 Sunday
The Corrupt Iraqi Officer Corps Abandoned Their Soldiers

Fascinating article by McClatchy reporters about the performance of the Iraqi Army in Mosul. All the generals and colonels fled and left their lower ranks behind in Mosel. Read the whole thing.

Nasseriís anger was fresh, and he couldnít help but compare the performance of the Iraqi officers with that of the U.S. military leaders who trained him and the U.S. forces he fought alongside as part of a quick-response team in the insurgent flashpoint of Fallujah years ago. His account, detailed but impossible to independently confirm, painted a picture of a corrupt military leadership that shook down soldiers for cash, kept nonexistent service members on the payroll, and showed up to standard only on the rare occasion Baghdad sends an inspector.

This deserting soldier tells a very interesting tale of what he saw and heard. Kurdish intelligence apparently knew this invasion was about to happen. They were ready to grab some more territory of their own when it did.

ISIS did not have to be great fighters. They were only up against the corrupt and not terribly motivated Iraqi Army. Will Shiite militias do better against ISIS? I think so.

Hey, the Persians want to be our allies. Iran wants to join America in an alliance against terrorist groups. What a guy.

Iran would be willing to overlook contentious relations with the United States and work together in providing assistance in Iraq ó if Washington vows to fight "terrorist groups in Iraq and elsewhere," Iranian President Hassan Rouhani pledged Saturday.

Ian Black in The Guardian: Iran and US face common foe in effort to stop Isis fighters in Iraq. Is it against US interests for a fundamentalist Sunni regime to be created from territory carved out of parts of Syria and Iraq? That might even be a solution. Let the other groups in Syria form another country or two. Then let the Kurds officially become a nation (they are one de facto anyway) and then southern Iraq will be a Shia Arab land.

I agree with Kurdish deputy prime minister Qubad Talabani: Iraq has already broken apart.

What are the odds that the Shia militias will recapture the Sunni Arab area of Iraq? Will they be that motivated? If they don't gear up for a big fight and reconquer the north then effectively ISIS has already accomplished their objective: creation of a new state that includes part of Syria.

What are you betting? Does Iraq stay broken up into 3 pieces? I'm guessing Yes.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2014 June 15 07:29 PM 

AMac said at June 15, 2014 9:27 PM:

ISIS has captured the largest oil refinery in Iraq, at Bayji, intact. It will be impossible for the Iraqi government to retake it, except as a smoldering ruin.

Iraq runs on oil revenues. The rump central government (in whatever form it survives) is about to experience severe, permanent, intractable budget shortfalls.

I believe that ISIS similarly captured electrical generating facilities, again intact. Also key parts of the water supply infrastructure for Baghdad. (I'm unsure of the details.) This means that Baghdad has water and power at ISIS' sufferance.

The Salafist jihadis of ISIS acquired the makings of a viable state last week, it seems to me.

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