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Defense Secretary Claims US Occupation Force In Iraq Has “Right of Self-Defense”

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Defense Secretary Claims US Occupation Force In Iraq Has "Right of Self-Defense"

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On December 16th, US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said that it expected Iraq to defend the US troops positioned there, otherwise the US had a right to “self-defense.”

In a media availability event, Mark Esper said that the US and Iraq had a very good relationship, but the increase in attacks on US bases in Iraq was concerning.

“Well, I did speak with the Iraqi prime minister. We had a very good conversation.

Of course, I’d — I’d like to speak first about the partnership between our two countries, the progress we’re making and the fact that we — what we want is a — a strong and independent Iraq and (inaudible) Iraq’s sovereignty.

That said, I — I noted my concern about the uptick in — in attacks on the bases in Iraq, where U.S. troops, materially may be, and that we were — we — we have a right of self-defense. That we would ask our Iraqi partners to take proactive actions, if you will, to get that under control because it’s not good for anybody.”

When asked who could be behind these attacks, he said that his belief was that it was Iran.

“Well, my suspicion would be that Iran is behind these attacks, much like they’re behind a lot of malign behavior throughout the region, but it’s hard to pin down. So again, we need their help in terms of getting the security situation under control and stabilized, but we also still retain our right of self-defense (inaudible).”

The US defense secretary made the allegations after he spoke with Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi amid protests in the country.

The Iraqi premier has previously called for efforts to “prevent an escalation that will threaten all parties.”

On December 13th, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also blamed Iran for the recent attacks that target bases with US troops in them.

“We must… use this opportunity to remind Iran’s leaders that any attacks by them, or their proxies of any identity, that harm Americans, our allies or our interests will be answered with a decisive US response,” Pompeo said in a statement.

“Iran must respect the sovereignty of its neighbors and immediately cease its provision of lethal aid and support to third parties in Iraq and throughout the region,” he said.

Two rocket attacks on December 9th targeted a compound near Baghdad International Airport, which houses US troops, only wounding Iraqi soldiers in the process.

Every other attack prior to this one, also blamed on Iran or Iranian-backed militias resulted in no injuries or victims whatsoever.

Gen. Mark Milley, the Joint Chiefs chairman also warned Iran against carrying out any more attacks.

“We are in a period of heightened risk with respect to Iran,”  Milley said. But the top American commander explained that “restraint in this particular situation is an appropriate response.”

“The ball is in the Iranian court,” Milley said. How they respond and the size and scope of that response will determine a U.S. answer, he explained.

All of these accusations, as usual are accompanied by no evidence to even suggest that Iran carried out any of the attacks, and Iran has denied that it did.

It is also noteworthy to repeat that none of the attacks ever injured a single person, with the exception of the last one, near the Baghdad International Airport, which only hurt Iraqis and no US personnel was hurt.

The US, backed by Britain, invaded Iraq in 2003 under the pretext that the former regime of Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction. No such weapons were ever found in the country. The invasion has led to years of insecurity and the rise of militant groups.

Regardless, the US feels at home and it has the right of “self-defense” if the local population doesn’t accept their presence. Even the Iraqi government has repeatedly called for the US to withdraw forces from the country.


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Saigon moment coming soon.

Peter Jennings

Or a Alamo.
At some point the Iraqi admin will get pissed at talking to deaf ears. Both Iraq and Iran have an axe to grind so i am surprised that an Iraqi/Iranian/Syrian alliance to secure their countries from US/nato/isreal hasn’t already happened.

Jens Holm

Too many seemes to forget, what happend after Alamo.

Jens Holm

Iraq could need that much rain now and then.

Hasbara Hunter



Tommy Jensen

I refuse to apologize. No more apologizes!


Or Iraq can send you home :P


In body bags hopefully.


US is in full spectrum hubris and hypocrisy, it invaded Iraq on totally fabricated WMD lies for its Zionist masters, killed over a million civilians, including half a million children by sanctions and use of banned DUI, cluster and phosphorus ammunition, instigated a brutal occupation and organized oil theft to fund Wahhabi terrorism and creating Daesh, impoverishing the people of Iraq and is illegally occupying a tormented country and now does not want the Iraqis to resist. This is truly in the insane category.


They only have “right” to pay 300 billion for destruction for Syria and lost Syrian lives and go home immediately after they apologize first.

Jens Holm

Write a science fiction about it. The tittle could be “Assad in Gulag”.


Well West did try to put “Assad in Gulag” or chop his head off by using terrorists and how did all that work out for you?
EU is getting their terrorists back and they are not happy.

Jens Holm

No West didnt do as I would prefare. There was a military escalation as well as Your “West” is not correct.

Again and again its ignored who is who. Kuwait, Bahreain, Turkey, UAE, Saudis are not West.

As written before we do have obligations taking our parts of terrorists back to court here. But those only are a few % in the whole picture and we deny to take the ones not even having our citicenship. We only can see they are a product of the muslim mismangement even its true, those also dont represent many.

Some seemes to forget we have our own problems too and partly semilar based on a kind of same problems. The difference might be we by human rights at least try to solve those problems and has made expensive tools for it. Another is we have made ourselves much more productive, so less becomes extremists and those has less backup.

So my wish also is protection both ways dividing by a wall, where we can solve ours and ME theirs.

I see Assad as well as Erdogan as incompetent to solve the vital problems, they have. Iran too. Afghanistan and Pakistan and HIndus in India now has given up any integration for muslims there even there are 180 mio. muslims.

Countries includes people and dont exclude millions. The same goes for Syria and several others. Some countries named above try to cover it too well by pumping oil and use that as camouflage.

I also see Yemen, Somalia, Eiopis, Eritrea, Sudan and several others havingthe same stop for devellopment problems. They are not able to create a living.

How comes about 40 million refugees are muslims and 10 millions are no muslims. If I say there are 7 billion human beings in the world and 1 billion are muslims the picture should be 7 million muslim in that bad situation.

The only solution for that should be important modifications in culture and religion. Actually the muslim eemigrants arriving here dont know Islam and never had been reading anything in the Holy Choran as well as other schrips.

When they arrive here they learn reading, writing and understanding danish – many especialy women cant even read their own languge – so “ITS WRITTEN” is a very bad joke.

But they then can read those important scripts in a modern and tradtionel version, where they even can read comments for different version made by danish muslims and scientists.

Especially girls and women then at least get the right at home, they have according to Islam and not old mens version mixted up with old crap from old culture.

Boys and men is same thing but in lower level. They are raised to respect the other gender better as well as the competition anong them becomes much´sober and a qulified powerplay amnong them instead of being infame.

We see the difference among muslims here, where many many follow the new Sunni as well as it goes. It make no sense to live as Sunni in Afghanistan, Somalia, Turkey or Syria, when the next generation and next has to be educated and make an income to a good life in the level we have and has worked so hard for.

So we can handle the ones, which understand that important part of Islam. Vomen can be all over and thats a good and practical thing. They also has the same right as men living as singles, divorsed and not depended by old mens(and womens) rule. Boys learn female teachers actually are the same and sometimes even better then men. They learn that Leaders of them often can be women, because they are better and selected as a choise not based on gender. They also learn its a no go men are paid with cars every time women just get a bunch ogf flowers or and old mobile phone.

We see the same around swimming. It makes no sense muslim men can be at the beaches having only small trousers on and demand Vomen should be dressed in black and hardly can make their feet wet.

Things like that takes generations, but for the mentioned countries above none has happend even fx Hafez and Bashir has been rulers 50 years.

We even see examples by socalled parlamentmembers about womens right, where they in Denmark would not even be proposed and PMs would go to jail right away for years.

Only SDFs has tryed important changes and everybody blames and attack THEM. I can omly see their try is much better then anything from Assads and the Johadists. A wall – Thank You.


Jens Holm we do not understand each other.


They have no proof of anything, only words. And for the record, there is no right to defense. You either can or cannot, you either do or do not. Where in God’s Holy Name are we getting this class of feckless, mouthy and managerial type of military leaders from, a comic book? Stop with the PR crap and either get ready to rumble or if it is too rough, get the hell out of there.

History will not treat these fellas kindly. They will be laughing uproariously for centuries over you guys.

Jens Holm

If You need a job, I can recommend You being a General or plummer for the enemies of mine.



Mehmet Aslanak

Self-defence to continue stealing Iraqi oil?
Just like Trump confessed that they are in Syria merely to steal oil.
Bolton is now proud of Iraqi invasion back in 2003 with fake WMD story.
But he’s sad that he couldn’t have achieved invasion of Iran with some fake gult attacks.

Jens Holm

There is no stealing. It buy and sale.

Tommy Jensen

Exactly what I have been saying for years. We have the right to defend innocent American civilians on our own American soil in Iraq.
Our Sergeant is speaking softly asking politely the Iraq regime to go and fight Iran to protect Americans, but if they don’t get it, we have a big stick for the aggression that Iran started………….…..LOL.


Your government is a corrupt animal a disgrace to humanity a shame which history will know eventually what your government made in other countries
Your government doesn’t have any remorse for human life. The filthy disgraceful and disgusting politicians in your country. Including the soldiers ho fight in their name.
Your government didn’t achieve peace nowhere In this world.
Your government has only stolen and killed people including 9/11 just for money and power

Jim Bim

The word stupidity comes not even close.

Azriel Herskowitz

He is right. US must be there to prevent the mullah regime from completely taking over the country!

Jens Holm

I dont see that anymore. Those Iraqians should be left alone and have that try.

Brian Michael Bo Pedersen

When i was deployed to Iraq in 2006 – 2007 with the Royal Danish Army, we very quickly noticed the attitude towards US forces and us.
The US forces where arrogant, agressive, over-the-top and very controlling and dominating towards the Iraqi people and their forces.
And that was reflected in the way the Iraqis reacted to the US appearances and patrols.
As i saw it, the US invasion force was just reaping what they sow, nothing more, nothing less.

The Iraqi and Iranian(at the border checkpoints) attitude towards us, the Danes, was of course affected by us occyping there country illegally, but the ordinary Iraqi people just either waved or ignored us.
And our way of conducting our patrols and collecting intelligence mirrored that; show respect, gain respect.

If anyone is interested, i made a video about my experiences with the iraqi people.
The video is in Danish, so non-danish speaking persons most likely wont understand a word of it.
Not even Danes know how to properly speak Danish :-D

Jens Holm

The american forces are educated in military matters only but often repair things, the units can.

They are not educated for understanding civile matters and this was discount saving money being adding no “Afterwards plan” even that knowledge did exist.

One sensible solution could have been giving the Iraqian soldiers still orginized in smaller units money for repairing the many damages. Thats could have given hope for something better.

So many unimployed is a very good base for paid opposition with or without weapons. The same goes for fx Iraq. Before the fightings the unimployment was 50% for men and much higher for women. Poor people being left alone like that accept to be paid soldiers for almost any.

Brian Michael Bo Pedersen

Never give them money, give them materials.
No politicians want a digger or 50 tons of asphalt, but every politicians wants a 100.000.

Same attitude goes towards the “poor poor Africa” and every disaster area; NEVER give them money, give them materials.

I once knew a Danish contractor that sold his very lucrative business in Denmark to go to Africa to help them building their continent, within a month he regretted that decision:
Many Africans are the most greedy and stupid people he have ever met:
You are allowed to bulldoze other peoples home without notice, while they are at work, to put down a new road, if you know who to pay and how.
You can get a lot of job done with a handfull of laptops and cellphones.
The Africans driving the machines would work until they ran out of fuel, then they would stop and just sit there, literally.
They would never call office to get fuel or anything.
The contractor found abandonded machines scattered around the landscape, worth hundred of thousands USD, because the Africans just didn care.
When Africans got payed they would not work until they used it all, they did not understand the principle of a normal paycheck.

IP (Iraqi Police) and IS (Iraqi Security) was corrupt to the core, we literally NEVER turned our back to them.
When we were on operations, they had a calm sector to guard, with coalition forces guarding them.
Whenever we were on guard duty with them, they we literally standing infront of us, NOT behind us.
Why did we use them then? 100% a political decision.

With that being said, there were many very nice IP/IS that, under different circumstances, could be a friend for life, they were sick and tired of war, and just wanted to move on.
Some of the corrupt IS/IS were threatened to be corrupt, they knew that when they went to work, there family was “protected” by the precursor to ISIL, giving them no choice.

The most corrupt of them all was the staff and politicians forced in place by us, the invasion force.
You know, in the name of democracy and freedom.
The western understanding of freedom, is that freedom is that everyone is willing to do everything for money, that gives the one with the most money the most freedom.

Never give them money, give them materials.

Pave Way IV

“…The US forces where arrogant, agressive, over-the-top and very controlling and dominating towards the Iraqi people and their forces…”

Everyone always says that about American forces – everywhere. And they generally know the locals hate them for some reason (but can never figure out exactly why). This pisses them off because the locals are suppose to be grateful that we showed up and freedomized them. When those soldiers come back to the US, a lot of them become police and treat US citizens the exact same way.

I would absolutely be interested in your video. Iraq and Afghanistan are the most censored wars in US history – we heard nothing in the US besides the usual CENTCOM cheerleading and propaganda about what heros we were.

Put it up on YouTube. Their auto-translate and caption are horrible, but one can usually figure out enough bits and pieces to follow along. It helps if you put a detailed narrative in the text part or a description of segments in the explanation (where, who, etc.) and enable commenting.

Brian Michael Bo Pedersen

Thank you for the interest.
The video is already up there, and i will try to do what you recommend, thanks.

Brian Michael Bo Pedersen

Here is the link to the video, its in Danish and google translate may or may not mess things up.


Concrete Mike

Good on you to document your experiences.

I feel for the iraqi people though, did you notice alot of these recent protests happenned just after the iraqi parliament talked about american forces should leave.

Its highly suspicious that now the americans come out and say this.

Jens Holm

Its very easy. We were asked in and has given help for billions and maybee being paid a little in oil.

If our help cant be protected, we should leave or defend ourselves. I think we should go home from there. Morons – fx a Hasbara – shows it very well.

Shiits by Teheran takes most of it and Turks take the rest as well as all Sunnis will be killed apart from a little zoo here and there instead of Iraq being one big zoo as now.

Even ISIS sold oil to the west.


ISIS is the Western subcontractor (funded by the West).
So why not “selling oil to the West” also?

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