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article imageOp-Ed: Unidentified air attack on PMF base in Syria blamed on Israel

By Ken Hanly     Sep 9, 2019 in World
Airstrikes have been launched against a base that belongs to Iraq's Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), a Shi'ite militia that is part of the Iraqi military. The attack is said to have killed several people.
The base known as the Imam Ali compound is in Abu Kamai a Syrian border town.
The Popular Mobilization Forces
Wikipedia describes the PMF as follows: "The Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), also known as the People's Mobilization Committee (PMC) and the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) (Arabic: الحشد الشعبي‎ al-Hashd ash-Shaʿabi),[20] is an Iraqi state-sponsored umbrella organization composed of some 40 militias that are mostly Shia Muslim groups, but also including Sunni Muslim, Christian, and Yazidi individuals as well.[21][22] The popular mobilization units have fought in nearly every major battle against ISIL.[23] It has been called the new Iraqi Republican Guard after it was fully reorganized in early 2018 by its then-Commander in Chief Haider al-Abadi. Former Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi issued "regulations to adapt the situation of the Popular Mobilization fighters," giving them ranks and salaries equivalent to other branches of the Iraqi military.[3]"
PMF have been subject to earlier attacks on its bases.
Iraqis have blamed the attacks on the US and Israel. The US has denied any responsibility and has even confirmed that Israel was responsible for at least one attack. No doubt it was responsible for others as well. The Military times reports: "Israel was responsible for the bombing of an Iranian weapons depot in Iraq last month, U.S. officials have confirmed, an attack that would mark a significant escalation in Israel’s years-long campaign against Iranian military entrenchment across the region." Israel seems to be committed to attack what it regards as Iranian proxies wherever they be as it has launched attacks on Syria, Lebanon, and Iraq. Israel claims the attacks are in defense of Israel.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights claimed that the attacks were carried out by unidentified warplanes but there is speculation that the attack was carried out by Israel. This would be consistent with Israeli claims that the base is Iranian even though the PMF fighters are with the Iraqi government. Some Iraqi militia members still insist that the US also is responsible for the attacks. No doubt such groups would like to take out revenge on the US bases that are present in Iraq.
Iraqi parliament may be pressured to expel US troops
Perhaps the Iraqi government will be pressured to pass a motion to expel US troops. A similar vote was to be taken late last December: "Iraqi lawmakers have demanded US forces leave the country in the wake of a surprise visit by Donald Trump, which politicians denounced as arrogant and a violation of Iraqi sovereignty." Apparently it was never passed or there was no vote. In May of this year there was to be another vote but again there has been no followup news. What the Iraqi parliament actually does is beneath the radar of MSM and also Google's search engine it would seem. On May 19 it was reported: "On Saturday, Iraq will be voting on a bill that would aim to expel all foreign troops from Iraqi soil, and singles out US troops in particular as needing to leave. The bill is endorsed by Iraq’s top two Shi’ite blocs, and is expected to pass fairly easily. "
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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