The plot was believed to be as follows: Washington wanted to keep long-term US military presence in Iraq but the popular opinion in Iraq militated against it, which ultimately left the Barack Obama administration no choice but to comply with the Status of Forces Agreement [SOFA] and to withdraw all the troops by the stipulated deadline of December 2011.
By Gareth Porter
WASHINGTON - United States Defense Secretary Leon Panetta's suggestion that the end of the US troop presence in Iraq was part of a US military success story ignores the fact that the George W Bush administration and the US military had planned to maintain a semi-permanent military presence in Iraq.
The real story behind the US withdrawal is how a clever strategy of deception and diplomacy adopted by Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki in cooperation with Iran outmaneuvered Bush and the US military leadership and got the US to sign the US-Iraq withdrawal agreement....
A central element of the Maliki-Iran strategy was the common interest that Maliki, Iran and anti-American Shi'ite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr shared in ending the US occupation, despite their differences over other issues....
Maliki needed Muqtada's support, which was initially based on Maliki's commitment to obtain a time schedule for the US troops' withdrawal from Iraq.
In early June 2006, a draft national reconciliation plan that circulated among Iraqi political groups included agreement on "a time schedule to pull out the troops from Iraq" along with the build-up of Iraqi military forces. But after a quick trip to Baghdad, Bush rejected the idea of a withdrawal timetable.
Maliki's national security adviser Mowaffak al-Rubaie revealed in a Washington Post op-ed that Maliki wanted foreign troops reduced by more than 30,000 to under 100,000 by the end of 2006 and withdrawal of "most of the remaining troops" by end of the 2007.
When the full text of the reconciliation plan was published on June 25, 2006, however, the commitment to a withdrawal timetable was missing....
In June 2007, senior Bush administration officials began leaking to reporters plans for maintaining what The New York Times described as "a near-permanent presence" in Iraq, which would involve control of four major bases....
Maliki immediately sent Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari to Washington to dangle the bait of an agreement on troops before then-vice president/assassin in Chief Dick Cheney...., the head of the most infamous White House Murder INc, in the Levant since January 24th 2002....
As recounted in Linda Robinson's Tell Me How This Ends, Zebari urged Cheney to begin negotiating the US military presence in order to reduce the odds of an abrupt withdrawal that would play into the hands of the Iranians....
In a meeting with then secretary of state Condoleezza Rice in September 2007, Rubaie said Maliki wanted a "Status of Forces Agreement" (SOFA) that would allow US forces to remain but would "eliminate the irritants that are apparent violations of Iraqi sovereignty", according Bob Woodward's The War Within.
Maliki's national security adviser was also seeking to protect the Mahdi Army from US military plans to target it for major attacks. Meeting Bush's coordinator for the Iraq War, Douglas Lute, Rubaie said it was better for Iraqi security forces to take on Muqtada's militias than for US Special Forces to do so.
He explained to the Baker-Hamilton Commission that Muqtada's use of military force was not a problem for Maliki, because Muqtada was still part of the government.
Publicly, the Maliki government continued to assure the Bush administration it could count on a long-term military presence. Asked by NBC's Richard Engel on January 24, 2008, if the agreement would provide long-term US bases in Iraq, Zebari said, "This is an agreement of enduring military support. The soldiers are going to have to stay someplace. They can't stay in the air."
Confident that it was going to get a South Korea-style SOFA, the Bush administration gave the Iraqi government a draft on March 7, 2008 that provided for no limit on the number of US troops or the duration of their presence. Nor did it give Iraq any control over US military operations.
But Maliki had a surprise in store for Washington.
A series of dramatic moves by Maliki and Iran over the next few months showed that there had been an explicit understanding between the two governments to prevent the US military from launching major operations against the Mahdi Army and to reach an agreement with Muqtada on ending the Mahdi Army's role in return for assurances that Maliki would demand the complete withdrawal of US forces.
In mid-March 2007, Maliki ignored pressure from a personal visit by Cheney to cooperate in taking down the Mahdi Army and instead abruptly vetoed US military plans for a major operation against the Mahdi Army in Basra. Maliki ordered an Iraqi army assault on the dug-in Sadrist forces.
Predictably, the operation ran into trouble, and within days, Iraqi officials had asked General Suleimani to intervene and negotiate a ceasefire with Muqtada, who agreed, although his troops were far from defeated.
A few weeks later, Maliki again prevented the United States from launching its biggest campaign yet against the Mahdi Army in Sadr City. And again, Suleimani was brought in to work out a deal with Sadr allowing government troops to patrol in the former Mahdi Army stronghold.
There was subtext to Suleimani's interventions. Just as Suleimani was negotiating the Basra ceasefire with Muqtada, a website associated with former Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps commander Mohsen Rezai said Iran opposed actions by "hardline clans" that "only weaken the government and people of Iraq and give a pretext to its occupiers".
In the days that followed that agreement, Iranian state news media portrayed the Iraqi crackdown in Basra as being against illegal and "criminal" forces.
The timing of each political diplomatic move by Maliki appears to have been determined in discussions between Maliki and top Iranian officials.
Just two days after returning from a visit to Tehran in June 2008, Maliki complained publicly about US demands for indefinite access to military bases, control of Iraqi airspace and immunity from prosecution for US troops and private contractors.
In July, he revealed that his government was demanding the complete withdrawal of US troops on a timetable.
The Bush administration was in a state of shock. From July to October, it pretended that it could simply refuse to accept the withdrawal demand, while trying vainly to pressure Maliki to back down....
In the end, however, Bush administration officials realized that Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, who was then far ahead of Republican John McCain in polls, would accept the same or an even faster timetable for withdrawal. In October, Bush decided to sign the draft agreement pledging withdrawal of all US troops by the end of 2011.
The ambitious plans of the US military to use Iraq to dominate the Middle East militarily and politically had been foiled by the very regime the United States had installed, and the officials behind the US scheme, had been clueless about what was happening until it was too late....LOL
In the fighting in Syria, you hear a lot about the city of Aleppo. Aleppo is the heart of what is referred to in the Bible (and historically) as Aram, which is where Aramaic is from - the language Mel Gibson chose for his movie about Jesus. Meshech is identified as a son of Aram. However, during the Ottoman empire, Aram became part of the empire.
When the Bible predicts the final attack on Israel, who is it that it says is doing the attacking:
Ezekiel 39: 1-2
“Son of man, prophesy against Gog and say: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: I am against you, Gog, chief prince of Meshek and Tubal. I will turn you around and drag you along. I will bring you from the far north and send you against the mountains of Israel.
A closer study of these names reveals that Meschech and Tubal are the ancient Moschi/Mushki and Tubalu/Tibareni peoples who dwelled in the area around, primarily south of, the Black and Caspian Seas in Ezekiel’s day. These nations today are in the modern country of Turkey, possibly parts of southern Russia and northern Iran....
...Meschek was located near what was known as Phrygia, in central and western Asia Minor, while Tubal was located in eastern Asia Minor. So with Meshek and Tubal, we are dealing with portions of modern Turkey.
Official policy of the Turkish State:
"My vision is a world without borders"
"all weapons will be removed".....
This is an offensive video. The reason is I'm presenting it is 1) we know that Christian beliefs affect politics and this video is one of the first examples of Christian reaction to Turkish policy and 2) I can't find a lesser offensive source for the same information. (sorry!)
And now I'm reposting this because it is so bizarre:
So would Christians and Israelis who read Ezekiel support Turkish control of Syria? It doesn't appear that they would. My belief is that the actors pushing for the fall of Assad are seeking the Turkish-Islamic Union led by Turkey and funded by Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the UAE. The fall of Assad is essential to the fulfillment of the Turkish state policy. However, Ezekiel is in both the Christian Old Testament and the Torah...and it would predict that the fall of Assad is necessary for the creation of "Gog, chief prince of Meshek and Tubal".
Whether world leaders are affected by this information, LOL....?