Badr Organization fighters pose with US M1 Abrams tank

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The green flag of the Badr militia can be seen flying on the Abrams tank in the background.

The Badr Organization, an Iranian-backed Shiite militia, has released new photographs showing it to be in possession of at least one US M1 Abrams tank. In both photos, the Badr flag can be seen flying on top of the tank.

The photos, which were shared with The Long War Journal by Twitter user @Green_Lemonnn, show at least one Abrams tank being touted reportedly in the Saqlawiyah area of Iraq’s Anbar province. Six Badr fighters and commanders posed with the tank in one photo. One fighter can be seen holding a US-supplied AT4 anti-tank rocket. The US began sending the rockets to Iraq in previous months to help the Iraqi military defeat armored Islamic State suicide assaults.

Badr is not the first Shiite militia to publicize its use of the M1 Abrams. The Hezbollah Brigades, a US-designated foreign terrorist organization, showed an Abrams, flying the Hezbollah Brigades flag, being transported by the group earlier this year. Additionally, the group has also recently published two videos from Anbar in which several US-made vehicles are seen being used by its forces. [See LWJ report, Video shows Hezbollah Brigades convoy transporting American M1 tank, and Threat Matrix report, Hezbollah Brigades flaunts US equipment in Anbar operation.]

The Badr Organization, formerly known as the Badr Brigade and Badr Corps, is led by Hadi al Ameri, Iraq’s Minister of Transportation. Ameri is closely tied to Iran and its Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, and to Qods Force commander Qassem Soleimani. During the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s, Badr fought on the side of the Iranians. Ameri is routinely photographed with Soleimani, and has been quoted as saying, “I love Qassem Suleimani! He is my dearest friend.”

The Badr Organization is part of the Popular Mobilization Committee, which is directed by Abu Mahdi al Muhandis, a US-listed Specially Designated Global Terrorist who is an adviser to Soleimani. Badr is one of several militias engaged in the fighting against the Islamic State.

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Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of The Long War Journal. Caleb Weiss is an intern at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a contributor to The Long War Journal.

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11 Comments

  • David Carrico says:

    I can see the Duffle Blog article now: Badr Brigade Armor soldiers bitching about how they with they’d gone infantry; all they get to do is use their tank for ECP.

    Seriously though, let’s see them operate it, maintain it, support it, and fight with it. Preferably against a HBCT. Or a Maverick.

  • shaneE says:

    Forget the American tank the guy standing on the tank has an American army issued shirt haha

  • Paul says:

    We should abandon the concept of a cohesive Iraqi state, there is so much bad blood between the Shia, Sunni, and the Kurds they will never agree to be governed, as a nation, out of Bagdad. A loose confederation is the best we can hope for an is our national security interest.. We need the defeat of Islamic radicals such as IS. Our focus in Iraq should be in two areas, supporting any available Sunni tribes still capable of fighting and support of the Kurds. The Shia, or at least the Shia government in Bagdad has sold their souls to Iran, so screw them.

  • GOLD 06 says:

    what i see is a typical tanker….out of uniform in the motor pool and on the weight control program! too easy!

  • George Padar says:

    So much for Foreign Military Assistance to a government whose troops bug out when the shooting starts leaving sophisticated weapons for our real and potential adversaries. Why are we doing this to ourselves? Give these countries defective or dangerous equipment that can be remotely detonated by the U.S. if it falls into the wrong hands!

  • mike merlo says:

    these ‘Tankers’ are Iranian

  • An Unhappy Camper says:

    One of the things I have noticed in watching other video’s a lot of surplus equipment US equipment, Humvees, M113 APC’s, MRAPS. Have been given not just to Iraq but to the Baltics. A lot of this stuff just isn’t needed, and is being replaced anyway. The good news these are more then likely M1A1’s. The bad news is Iran will have some insight into the Armor fire control, and the electronics, which is way more advanced then anything they have. As David C has pointed out lets see how many are still running a year from now.

  • Stavy says:

    This is so infuriating to see our potential rivals getting our tax payer paid for military equipment. We cant trust anyone in that whole theater and should stop funding our enemies on BOTH SIDES. The friend of my friend is my ENEMY! Iran is not and never will be a friend to the US! If Iran is threatened by ISIS then they should fund their own war. This makes no sense!

  • Frank says:

    The people really happy to see ISIS running the Abrams is General Dynamics Senior Management — “We’ll keep making (selling) you more!”

  • Eideard says:

    Keep stroking yourselves, folks, about the native tech superiority of Americans. I visited aboard several nuclear subs BITD, American and Iranian, and if anything, the Iranians came up to spec more often than our seagoing cowboys.

    Replacing engraved control knobs with billiard balls stolen from clubs in Dunoon, for example, was common practice on the US subs.

    • Yellow Devil says:

      Cool story bro. I love the outlandish claim at the end, it took the story from implausible to satirical.

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