An Iraq at Peace with Its Neighbors

Well it was before. Now the Turks are bombing the north again (whether actually killing PKK members or not is in dispute) and war with Iran looms. Andrew Cockburn reports in Counter Punch Bush’s new “finding” authorizing more covert support for anti-Iranian and anti-Syrian terrorist groups like the MEK, Jundullah and – irony anyone? – the PKK-allied Pejak.

The Sunday Times says the military is renewing plans for strikes at Quds Force targets in Iran, a further irony since the Quds Force is the father organization of the Badr Corps (AKA: Bush’s “Iraqi Army”).

And Secretary Rice has laid down the gauntlet, accusing Iran of everything under the Sun.

Any strikes against Iran seem almost certain to escalate into full scale war in southern Iraq, Iran’s nuclear facilities and who-knows-what else.

One notable portion of Cockburn’s article:

Interestingly, despite the bellicose complaints, Petraeus has made little effort to seal the Iran-Iraq border, and in any case two thirds of U.S. casualties still come from Sunni insurgents. “The Shia account for less than one third,” a recently returned member of the command staff in Baghdad familiar with the relevant intelligence told me, “but if you want a war you have to sell it.”

Cross-posted at Stress.

Author: Scott Horton

Scott Horton is editorial director of, director of the Libertarian Institute, host of Antiwar Radio on Pacifica, 90.7 FM KPFK in Los Angeles, California and podcasts the Scott Horton Show from He’s the author of the 2017 book, Fool’s Errand: Time to End the War in Afghanistan and editor of The Great Ron Paul: The Scott Horton Show Interviews 2004–2019. He’s conducted more than 5,000 interviews since 2003. Scott lives in Austin, Texas with his wife, investigative reporter Larisa Alexandrovna Horton. He is a fan of, but no relation to the lawyer from Harper’s. Scott’s Twitter, YouTube, Patreon.

22 thoughts on “An Iraq at Peace with Its Neighbors”

  1. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are both part of the neo-con plan to destroy Iran. I honestly don’t understand how people don’t see it. We now have them surrounded and will attack if not in the next year at least in ten. This is their agenda and if we the people don’t act soon there will be no stopping them. Wake up people! Get out and protest do anything and everything in your power to stop this evil before it’s too late. May God have mercy on our poor sorry souls if we don’t. It could well lead to the end of the world as we know it.


    1. Protest?……… Protest what?
      There is nothing to protest yet. And if you want Americans to protest this war or any war they already are. Websites like this one will be the down fall of “the world as we know it” as you put it. Its already begun.. And we wonder why moral is so low in the troop units over seas. No one held a gun to those men and women’s head to force them into the military.
      They wanted to serve a country that they loved and respected. They were sent into the war zone… They didnt just say “hey lets go bomb some people”. They followed orders given to them by a higher command. They do a job just as all of us do, only the jobs they do dont have the option of just up and saying i quit. Nor would they because a true soldier.. a true warrior that believes in something so strong will never quit. To them life is not that simple. WAR.. is not simple!
      We can sit and bitch and grip all we want.. The fact still remains that those men and women serving this country are still over there. They still need our support. What if we had no military and our country had no means of defending itself? No one gives thought to that…because no one cares, all seem to just be in love with his or her own voices.
      Well guess what?..Im a soldier serving in this war right now. And yes by all means i want to go home. But i cant do that.. Not yet!! If we quit now you can take my words to the bank…9/11 will be a small amount of blood shed on American soil and will be replaced with and amount far greater than our human minds could ever imagine.
      Im damn proud to call myself and AMERICAN and proud of the country i call HOME!

      —————————– LET ME DO MY JOB

      1. I’m sorry to hear that your brainwashing has gone so deep. I served in combat twice (11B) and so I do know what it’s like. You may wake up some day as I have and realize that you are being lied to. The wars are not making us safer, far from it. Making more and more enemies is not a prescription for peace. it will only lead to further terror, both here and overseas. As for why we should protest, it’s so that people like you can come home and to help ensure that no more lives are lost for lies and oil and Isreal etc.

        I know it’s hard to want to believe that your sacrifice is actually harming America but some day you will understand and then instead of being pissed off at me you will come to realize that it’s the politicians who got you and us into this mess, not the people like me who want it to end and not escelate that you should be angry with. Again I am sorry you have fallen for the Orwellian War is Peace crap but that’s what it is. War does not bring peace or prosperity it only brings death and destruction you of all people should know this. You and your fellow soldiers are simply cannon fodder for the elite state power mad. The sooner you all come home the better, both for you, the people of the United States and the rest of the world.

        I also understand your frustration at being stuck doing the worst possible job on earth while everyone at home goes on living life like normal. I felt the same rage that many soldiers do. Here you are fighting for your life and (so you believe at the time) your country and all the lame ass civilians are sitting home living it up without a care in the world. They keep partying and getting married and worrying about simple things like what car to buy or how to finance a new home. Well guess what life goes on without you, dead or alive, at war or at home. What you need to come to grips with are the facts not what you have had beaten into your brain. The facts are that all wars are wars of choice. You choose to fight and our government decided where you go. You will wake up some day to the facts that are there for you to see or you won’t, it’s your choice. I chose to wake up and get out, I felt that was the best decision for me and my family and the people of our country. You may never come to that decision but it is yours to make. Go do some actuall research about the origins of these wars as you will at least be making a truly informed decision. Don’t trust the main stream media or your chain of command or even your friends or familly or me for that matter. Do your own homework, make up your own mind, don’t just take it for granted that you are being told the truth.


      2. Protest what, you ask? Protest quite specifically this absolutely mindless disquisition of yours, this paen to just about every cliche ever uttered when people in the military are caught up with a need to justify the unjustifiable and to rationalize their own involvement with it. You speak of the motivation of those who serve voluntarily out of their love of country, when in as many cases the service is motivated by a desire for some kind of employment and the opportunities afforded by a federally financed education. You speak of the need for support when instead of considering your future thoughtfully when doing so might have been genuinely beneficial, you placed yourself in the hands of a madman and now struggle to make sense of it all. That in my mind, sir, isn’t patriotism, its just rank stupidity.

        There are many of us here who would like to see you extricated from your dilema and very quickly, son. And I suspect that there’s likely a very good reason that you may have chosen as a place to express yourself. When you’re home and safe from the insanity with which you’re involved at the moment, there will be a time for reflection and, hopefully, some thorough-going soul searching. Its then that you’ll likely come to know the meaning of the word, “crisis”, and require support of a kind that all the yahooing in the world will never provide.

        1. You refer to me a “son’ and “sir”… While in fact i am a female soldier.
          I am and officer and i am called “ma’am”.
          It just proves my point that soldiers are stereo-typed. Only an man can be a true soldier? Only and man can stand for a country in which he serves? Only a man is mental strong enough to defend his nation? ——— I think not ! And i know for fact that the female soldiers fight with more heart and more compassion for a country we love and respect than any man you will come across. We will not go away, We will not be silenced by web sites like this.
          You are right though… You have been given the freedom of speech by the blood, sweat and tears of many soldiers and we vow to never let you forget it.
          For everytime our military is called out by hate comments or disrespect we will come back stronger than ever. The military is your government! So continue on in your lives filled with bubble gum and roses while we keep it all stable and in tacted for you.

        2. It’s a little funny how you don’t wish to be steriotyped but at the same time allude to your belief that “female soldiers fight with more heart and more compassion for a country we love and respect than any man you will come across”. Sorry but that is a load of you know what. As for calling you Ma’am your mistaken on two fronts. As an officer you can be addressed as Sir whether your male or female. Furthermore, as a civilian you should adress me as Sir and I am allowed to address you anyway I wish.

          Again I am also saddened by your total lack of knowledge. If you believe that this current war has anything to do with “freedom of speech” you show yourself to be ignorant of the facts as they are. As for your belief that “The military is your government” what an absolutely sorry thought. The Government is supposed to be for the people, of the people and by the people not for the Mlitary, of the Military, and by the Military. You Sir are part of the problem not part of the solution. If your a typical example of today’s modern military I am doubly glad I got out when I did.

          You have obviusly forgotten the lessons you where supposed to have been taught as far back as Basic training. YOU are supposed to treat civilians with respect and dignity regardless of how they have treated or addressed you. Furthermore, If you are who you say you are why not post your actual name, rank, and unit. Somehow from your comments I think I was a little gullible to have believed that you are actually serving. Given your unprofessional comments I doubt if you are on the up and up.


      3. Hopefully you surivive the war voodoo, but to the people making policy like Henry Kissinger “Military men are just dumb stupid animals to be used as pawns in foreign policy.”—Henry Kissinger, quoted in “Kiss the Boys Goodbye: How the United States Betrayed Its Own POW’s in Vietnam”

        Stop loss policies are not voluntary servitude, that is slavery. If Greenspan and McCain are right and “the war is about oil” the cost of the war is enough to subsidize oil at over $180 per barrel…there were many superior ways to get us energy than subsidizing oil at $180/ barrel. You are fighting for the military industrial complex…read about Marine General Smedley Butler , “War Is A Racket”. That man was a real warrior, you are under the misconception that a real warrior doesn’t use his head he just follows orders. It is understandable that you think this way(the empire has intentionally created your drone like attitude), but it is sheer folly and if you have children they will not be happy that you have taken up this sickness called state-worship.

        Sacrifice of your life to merely increase Haliburton contracts is NOT the highest ideal in a sane person’s mind. All of your hard work has only increased Al Quada recruiting, we are no safer than when you started…if you are guaranteeing attacks I believe they will come, but not without approval from our government just like the last ones…ever work with anthrax?

    2. My comment is about the US military and the war in Iraq.
      I support all of you in what you do for me and my family. I am a survivor of the attacks on the World Trade Center. I was a computer programmer, and worked in the north tower on the 36th floor that housed computer com links.
      And yes most will say my emotions are out of anger….THEY ARE!!
      Im sure you all have heard the stories.. heard the cries..saw all of the heartache. Unless you lived it will never know the level of fear and wondering if the end of your life has come. The terrorists that carried out these acts are people that were spawn from pure and complete evil. I search everyday for some sort of balance in this roller coaster ride we call life, but to have people bring forth such blood shed is something our human minds will never be able to understand.
      I am proud that our government and President acted swiftly as to what had happened. President Bush felt our pain and yes we wanted revenge. I still to this day hungery for revenge for the lives lost. I pray that will take this hunger from me but so far my pain remains.
      It maybe wrong of me and i maybe punished for such emotions but i gain comfort in the knowing that our military are in this war and fighting back on my behalf. They know i am not strong enough, so i am so thankful for such brave men and women who fight for me.
      And i know that our government and military will see to it that no one inside those towers that die will have died in vain.
      And if this statment cause people to hate me and how i feel then so be it. Im not ashamed of how i feel or my emotions on this subject.
      God bless our military and their families … and i thank each and everyone of you for stepping forward and doing a job that most can not.

      1. If you have the histroy you say you do you should redirect your anger where it belongs. Iraq did not attack us, we attacked them. You should be ashamed of your gloating in the deaths of innocent people who have done nothing to you or your friends and family. Having strong emotions that are so misdirected will bring you nothing in the long run but frustration. Do some research and you will quickly be able to understand that it is our government you should be angry with not the people of Iraq. Our government invited the attacks on 9/11 by their constant terror campaigns that have been directed against the Arab nations.

        Who would Jesus Bomb? You say God bless so I assume you are Christian, where does it say Bomb thy neighbor? I thought it was Love thy neighbor, silly me!


        1. I agree with Brad and call BS!

          Who attacked the World Trade Center(and the Pentagon) on 9/11/01 and for what reasons? We know they were Egyptians and Saudis. Why? Both countries are US supported dictatorships where Sharia Law is the law of the land. The locals are brutally suppressed and abused by the US supported regimes, the reasons for retaliation are endless. Go back even further to the 1980’s. Who was supporting Osama Bin Laden and who was bombing and shelling cities like Beirut in support of Israel at the same time? Both answers is the US. Muslims saw this as a dagger in one hand hidden behind the back and a false hand of friendship presented. They saw themselves as being used as cannon fodder in US Cold War geopolitics, this was one of the main reasons Bin Laden turned on the US. Nobody likes to be used and discarded. But remember, Bin Laden was a Saudi, and an enemy of Saddam Hussein’s non-fundamentalist Ba’ath government.

          Why did the US attack Bin Laden’s enemy? Is it not said that “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”? So why attack Hussein if he was an enemy of America’s enemy? It becomes clear the motives to attack Iraq were not to fight terrorism, they were based on Greed(for oil). Enough of bringing up 9/11 to wash the blood off America’s hands, Hitler also would bring up the Reichstag fire to whitewash his Wars of Aggression.

        2. As to voodoo.

          Nothing to protest yet? Should we wait until the first corpses are pulled from rubble of a school or a hospital in Iran destroyed by a US made RGM-109 Tomahawk missile?

          Violence begets more violence, violence does not solve violence. You cannot kill Iraqis and think you are damaging an organization created by Saudis and fighting “terrorism”.

          One does not protect one’s nation by destroying another without a (good) reason. That is not called protection, that is called AGGRESSION. Those who fight against Aggression are protecting themselves.

          “They wanted to serve a country that they loved and respected.” – Yeah, so did the Germans(and Italians etc), who joined the Wehrmacht, and killed 40 Million people in Europe. Jingoism can blind men(and women) to horrible acts of violence committed in the name of “defending the Fatherland”. “They followed orders given to them by a higher command” – Which was EXACTLY the excuse given by the Axis troops for butchering 40 Million people. “only the jobs they do dont have the option of just up and saying i quit” – of course they do, they can refuse an illegal order and are protected by the Geneva Conventions to do so.

          “What if we had no military and our country had no means of defending itself?” – The US no longer has a Military for Defense, something like the National Guard’s original idea. The US has Imperial Legions like the Roman Empire. The Imperial Legions have 700 Garrisons around the globe keeping the “barbarians” in check. The Middle East is America’s Gaul, and the Neocons running the US government think they are modern day Caesars.

          “will be replaced with and amount far greater than our human minds could ever imagine” – And the best way to avoid this is to leave Iraq now and provide reconstruction help without the 160,000 troops on the ground and beg for forgiveness. And don’t feed me that “Civil War” nonsense, Iraqis lived in relative peace until the US attacked them.

          “You refer to me a “son’ and “sir”… While in fact i am a female soldier.
          I am and officer and i am called “ma’am”” – I don’t care if you are the Queen of England. It is US civilians who US troops should be taking orders from not Government Bureaucrats who never served an hour in the Military but now act like Napoleon.

          “The military is your government!” – No that is what Fascist states are, the US is a “government of the people, by the people, and for the people”, unfortunately it becoming less true with each passing year.

  2. Well I personally think the sh*t will hit the fan in this country if we attack Iran. How many of he 68% who think invading Iraq was a mistake will support this? How many of the 71% who think Bush is doing a terrible job as president will support this? If these traitors think they can get away with this under the cover of their faux patriotism (for that’s the only way they can hope to keep a lid on the domestic backlash), I think they will be in for a very rude awakening.

    1. The people may be outraged by our launching a war on Iran – and this time I sense its almost certain that we will – but the “domestic backlash” you expect, if it even developes, will go nowhere. The American people have such naive trust in the system that they assume that simply voting for the major party out of power will bring change. I’m sure you’d agree that this is what happened in 2006 yet no meaningful change has occured, if anything things have gotten worse, which is precisely why were talking about this question here and now. Our political system acts like a gigantic sponge, soaking up outrage only to funnel it into an abyss. As it is presently constituted, American Democracy is a hideous distortion of what most imagine it to be. Almost everyone actually believes the franchise is meaningful when the whole weight of things is arranged in such a way as to deny the people their aspirations the very moment they express them.

      1. Spot on. War with Iran will be a rougher ride for the Bushit bunch than Iraq, but it will still rally the warmongers and those Americans who haven’t had an independent thought in decades, i.e., the majority.

        Sometimes little things are the most depressing. Sunday, NPR featured the return of a dead soldier to Wyoming. His mother said she didn’t blame anyone for her son’s death, except perhaps the suicide bomber. What is it with us, that we cannot even point a finger at those responsible for all this evil? That the more the Bushits take our money and children, the tighter we embrace them?

  3. For God’s sake are you crazy to Follow warmongering policies of Bush . He is the main barrier for the friendly relationships between the nations in the middleeast his administration is now supporting a terrorist group with a scandalized bloody history of killing many peoples in iran and iraq i mean MEK terrorist group which Mr. Bush is up to apply them for what they are trained for “Assassination”. So you are no better Mr. bush than these terrorists.You are of the same stuff . Shame on you.

  4. The key to understanding the insanity of America’s foreign policy in the Mid East is to recognize that the policy is driven by Israeli interests. Not oil interests, Israeli interests. Every labeled “terrorist organization” (Hamas, Hezbollah, etc) is a group of freedom fighters opposed to Zionistic expansion. If oil was the driving force, I don’t think we would care a lick about Lebanon or Syria. These are nations that have had territory stolen from them by Israel and they are our enemies because they are not content to let Israel keep the stolen lands. I think also that the biggest political secret in America is that many intelligent Americans resent Israeli control over us. Israel has overplayed their hand and when this resentment sees the light of day, a lot of anger over the the loss of American blood, treasure and reputation will be rightfully vented at Zionism.

  5. @voodoo south,

    I used to like you and like you I volunteered for the first Gulf war.

    “The fact still remains that those men and women serving this country are still over there. They still need our support.”

    You have my support in the fullest, to get you out of Iraq ASAP. If I had had my way you and your buddies never would have been sent to Iraq the first place. One day you’ll realize as I did that you were lied to about this stupid war for Israel and the transnational oil companies just like I was lied to in 1990. When that day comes you will be as pissed off as I was when I found out about April Glaspie relaying a message from the first Bush administration stating that Iraq and Kuwait’s border disagreement was none of our concern.

    I can say this. Back in 1990 I never believe it was about Kuwaite freedom despite Bush senior’s lies, but really about oil for the US economy.

  6. I’m amazed to hear people saying that being a soldier at war is like “doing a job, as all of us do”…No! being a soldier and killing people is not “a job”, and certainly not a “usual job”!
    I know two kind of people being paid for killing people, murderers and mercenaries. I hope the huge majority of US soldiers at war won’t recognize itself in one kind or the other!

    Words are importants! You’re fighting a war because the ennemy is threatening you. Back in 2003, there were no threat from Iraq, and the US administration invented some in order to sell the war. If, more than five years after and one million of dead people, millions of wounded or displaced, you can feel some anger from Iraq and arab world, it does not seem that strange! And the US still are the main offender.

    9/11 was a job done by saudis, and despite the lack of inquiry results (sorry, I believe in justice and inquiries, and don’t believe Bush’s lies anymore), seem to have been decided by a saudi. No afghans attacked the US, and the whole afghan population was eager to see the destruction of the taleban regime before 2001. But they don’t ask for bombing, they asked for the end of support to this regime, by both the Pakistan and its allies, that is to say US and saudis! Up until july 2001, the taleban had a bureau in New York, and Leila Helms, niece of former CIA boss, was their PR agent!

    Today, in a desperate move, the US administration would like to bomb Iran…Why? Where is the threat? How would the US decide if Iran has the right to have nuclear reactors? International treaties? But, then, why should Israel could have nuclear power against the same treaties?

  7. Edit:

    “@voodoo south,

    I used to like you and like you I volunteered for the first Gulf war.”

    This should be read as “I used to be like you and like you…”

    Sorry for not properly proofreading this. Other than that, best of luck to you and your buddies.

  8. I’m optimistic that the worst kind of blowback to PKK sponsorship will be Turkish sponsorship of Turkmen “freedom fighters” seeking to end the tyranny of the US and its Shia collaborators. And we won’t have a 2 front war in Iraq with Turkish Mechanized Forces battling US Marines and Army forces in house to house fighting in Mosul while Shia Militias encircle British and US forces in the South with Mortars raining down on their bases like a sequel to Dien Bien Phu, all this while Iranian Missiles turn the Green Zone into the far side of the Moon. Nope I don’t think it will happen.

    1. At some point, Turkey’s blood will boil. They give the US Air Bases, Ports, and Fuel pipelines, and what do they get in return? US Sponsorship of anti-Turkish terrorists. That is a US government kick in the groin after Turkey extends a hand of friendship. You can only take so many kicks before you start extending loaded guns instead of hands of friendship. Some Turkish Generals may even try to get revenge by attacking US forces, and many Turks would support them.

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