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article imageOp-Ed: US confirms Israeli airstrikes caused mysterious Iraq explosions

By Ken Hanly     Aug 24, 2019 in World
US officials have finally confirmed that a series of mysterious explosions in Iraq were actually caused by Israeli airstrikes although some had already suspected this to be the case
JAP reports confirmation
The Associated Press (AP) account: "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. The confirmation comes as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is strongly hinting that his country is behind recent airstrikes that have hit bases and munitions depot belonging to Iran-backed paramilitary forces operating in Iraq."
Iran promises strong retaliation
The deputy head of Iraqi militias known as the Popular Mobilization Forces had earlier in the week openly accused Israeli drones of carrying out the attacks, but he ultimately blamed Washington. He threatened strong retaliation for any future attack.
Former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki also warned of a strong response should it be proven that Israel was responsible for the recent airstrikes.
Israel appears to be able to do whatever it likes even though its actions may often violate international law. Israel has often hit with airstrikes what it claims are Iranian or Hezbollah targets in Syria. Now it has attacked a sovereign country without provocation. Meanwhile the US is no doubt quite happy the attacks are happening. The US has nothing to say in condemnation. The Israelis claim the Iraqi Shiite militia are just Iranian proxies. No doubt the US feels the same way and appreciates the Israeli attacking them as proxies for US attacks!
Iraq has demanded that the US not make unauthorized flights
A recent article notes that the US would comply with the demand of the Iraqi PM: "The U.S.-led coalition against the Islamic State group in Iraq says it will comply with new orders issued by the country's prime minister regarding unauthorized flights in Iraqi airspace. In a statement Friday, it says that as guests of the Iraqi government, the coalition complies with all Iraqi laws and direction from the government." Since then the US has said that many of their missions would not apply.
Iraq may find it difficult to make a strong response
Iraq only has a marginal air defense system so they have little chance of shooting down an attacking plane or drone. Israeli planes are similar to US planes and so it would be dangerous to shoot at a plane whose identity is not known. It would seem that the US will still fly planes without authorization or knowledge of the Iraqi government.
Iraqi militias have taken a few shots at spy aircraft without result so far.
The Iraqi parliament in late December last year was to hold a vote on expelling the US: "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. Politicians from both blocs of Iraq’s divided parliament called for a vote to expel US troops and promised to schedule an extraordinary session to debate the matter." I can find no follow up reports that indicate whether the vote was even held or what the results are.
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
More about Israel Iraq relations, Israeli attack on Iraq, Iraq Shiite militias
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