Inside the UIA

More reports of possible divisions between SCIRI and Jaafari’s Dawa party, and the greater game with Iran

Ibrahim al-Jaafari

The Shiite United Iraqi Alliance is often viewed as a united block of Islamist, but the fact is there are serious divisions within the party. The four large blocks, Hakim’s SCIRI (Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq) party, Jaafari’s Dawa party, al-Jabiri’s Fadhila party, and Sadr’s faction do not always agree on the future course of their party and Iraq.

On March 2, MEMRI’s Dr. Nimrod Raphaeli looked at “The Difficulties of Forming the New Government in Iraq”, and provided details on the divisions between the individual parties that make up the UIA, as well as background information on the Kurdish, Sunni and secular Shiite parties. Dr. Raphaeli notes “Al-Sadr has two potent opponents – the Kurds and Abd al-Aziz al-Hakim, the leader of SCIRI. If these two political groups should join forces with Allawi and the Sunnis, an entirely new political situation could emerge.”

There is further ancillary evidence of a split in the UIA between SCIRI and the Sadr/Dawa alliance. Reuters notes “Publicly, SCIRI officials say they continue to back Jaafari…” and SCIRI’s Hakim “has publicly criticized what he has called U.S. interference and specifically Khalilzad’s role in Iraq, where political leaders see him as a key player in negotiations… But there are indications Shi’ite rivals are ready to try to drop Jaafari to break the impasse. Iraqi political sources have also said Washington does not want Jaafari to continue.”

Abd al-Aziz al-Hakim

On March 13, Ali at A Free Iraqi provided an account of the divisions between Hakim and Sadr, based on reports in the Arab media. Ali’s report of Sadr threatening Hakim and members of the UIA meshes with Dr. Raphaeli’s statement that Sadr threatened to incite a civil war if Jaafari was not selected as Prime Minister.

She’at [Shiite] sources confirmed to Al-Watan that “Al-Hakeem complained to Sistani that he’s being under pressure from Iran and has been receiving threats from the Sadr trend of inciting chaos and violence in case Ja’fari was replaced by Adil Abdil Mehdi” Clarifying that “Sadr made direct threats through a phone call to Al-Hakeem that he would kill all women members in the UIA and leaders in the SCIRI if Abdil Mehdi replaced Ja’fari”. According to the same sources “Iran replaced it’s strategic alliance with Al-Hakeem by one with Sadr who visited it last month” Announcing “His militias’ readiness to defend Iran in case it was attacked by the US” and pointed out that ” His supporters started intimidating acts against the British forces in Basra provoked by the Revolutionary Guard intelligence stationed in the city who finance and supervise those militias”.

Muqtada al-Sadr

In a conversation with Peter Paraschos, an analyst based in Washington, DC, he noted Iran’s desire to maintain a united UIA and highlighted the strategy unfolding on the poltical front:

On the 24th, Khalilzad essentially read the Iranians the Riot Act, highlighting their support of the Mehdi Army and Ansar Al Sunnah. Brilliant. That ought to cause further dissension within the UIA, but so far, no outright schism. Iran is probably working overtime behind the scenes to keep the Shiite bloc united. And the Shiites themselves are probably scared that any show of disunity could really hurt them at the hands of their traditional oppressors. From Tehran’s perspective, if the UIA comes unglued, and a true national unity government forms, then Iran’s golden opportunity to assert its control over the Iraqi government will have passed.

Sadr, and by default Iran’s influence in Iraq, is now being targeted for. Again, the strike against Sadr’s militia in Hayy Ur should be viewed as an opening act to defang the militias, cleave off support of Sadr’s faction within the UIA, and check Iran’s influence within Iraq.

Mr. Paraschos’ statements, combined with the reports from Ali, Reuters and Dr. Raphaeli, also puts Hakim’s public support of Sadr in context, as well as the virtual silence of SCIRI and Fadhila on the attack on Sadr’s Mahdi Army. Silence is not support. Fence-sitting is an age old political posture, particularly in the Middle East and in Iraq, where Saddam had a way of making examples of those who boldly took a position. Some members of the UIA are now waiting for the strong horse to emerge.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.


  • patrick neid says:

    the beauty of raids such as these and the stories and explanations that follow tell the intelligence folks all they need to know. most of the time its just business as usual but occasionally you hit the mother lode. i think the best is still to come as the excuses pour in.

  • Matthew says:

    With all due respect to the British forces, their kid-glove handling of Basra (a Sadr base of support with authoritarian control of the general population) has really been a disaster that might cost American lives down the road especially if there is a tussle between American and Iranian forces.

  • Lisa says:

    Patrick you spelled intelligent wrong.
    Sadr is the fattest Iraqi I have seen! Wonder why? Could it be he has become fat on the spoils of killing innocents? UUHMMM I wonder!
    Well, you know what they say “The bigger they are, the harder they fall.” We’ll see him fall.

  • anna says:

    Well many of the “realists” warned of the splitting within various groups and potentially violent conflict. The Shia consist of several ambitious groups and often these divide under pressure.
    There does seem unity in the attempt to subdue us. I thibnk our current ambassador is the best we;ve had and wish he and Zinni had been in 3 years ago. But competence is not something they expect or like from us, so the pressure is on. The government of Baghdad’s threat to stop cooperation, the calls for our ambassadirs resignation. Tey know that once subjected to mild difficulties this administration tends to crumble. So they need to get us back in line with their interests. Or force humiliation.
    Since we’ve cut off new foreign aid now that control shifted to State, provincial teams and methods used successfully in Vietnam, but thus no longer benefits Rumsfeld’s cronies we have less to offer them. I expect the 20 billion of their money we spent is going to be an issue soon, since the corruptiondwarfs that of the food for oil program the UN will probably be gleeful.
    We shall see how we play the growing chaos, but I would not be confident. The Shiites have grudges froim 1991 and elsewhere, I expect they will get us to give in, then humiliate us as we also struggle to defend the Sunni. If we go too far in this direction they may bring in Iranian forces.

  • MG says:

    The British forces may have an “economy of force” mission.
    Their domestic politics limit their military’s aggressiveness. Too many casualties, and the Brits
    pull out. So… keep them there for intel gathering. Eventually, the Iraqi Army (and US forces) will be able to take care of the Sadrists.
    Or… the Iranians will reduce / remove their support for Sadr, and it won’t be necessary to take out Sadr militias in combat operations.
    My opinion, etc.

  • Levi says:

    Now that the Sunni insurgency has been suppressed, it’s time to clean out the last impediment to a stable, US-allied Iraq — namely the Iranian-allied Shia militia. The US-Iraqi Army “mosque” action _follows_ the mortar attack on al-Sadr’s _home_ that same morning. Could the message be any clearer?
    Have we arrived at end-game in Iraq? In time to wheel around on Iran?

  • JAF says:

    I wouldn’t say that the Sunni insurgency is entirely suppressed.

  • TallDave says:

    Interestingly, some of “his” militia apparently took a potshot at him with a mortar yesterday.
    I get the feeling Sadr is now riding the tiger, and can’t get off of these militias without being eaten by them.

  • TallDave says:

    Oh, and it bears repeating: the Iraqi people are going to demand these militias be dismantled. No one likes the current chaos.

  • Lisa says:

    These killings that we keep hearing about…you know the bodies that they keep finding in the morning, is anyone “seeing” these murders happen?
    I see that there were 3 large kidnappings of Iraqi citizens. This is not good… What is the purpose of this? Is this the only way they think they can win by slaughtering their own people? Does anyone have any idea who is behind these acts? How do you fight such a being that would go against his own religious beliefs and God by committing murder?

  • Lisa says:

    Another interesting quote to ponder…
    John Stuart Mill:
    War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature, and has no chance of being free unless made or kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.

  • hamidreza says:

    Lisa: Patrick you spelled intelligent wrong.
    Lisa, first off, Patrick is correct in his usage of the term “intelligence folks”. This refers to the people in the army or the government, that deal with intelligence, and not combat.
    Second off, nitpicking on language oriented faults such as words, typos, improper usage, incorrect grammar, etc. just serves to distract people from dealing with meaning, depth, and structure. It is a hindrance to discourse …
    These killings that we keep hearing about…you know the bodies that they keep finding in the morning, is anyone “seeing” these murders happen?
    Please go to this blog, and click on the video. It clearly shows black-clad Sadr Mahdi Islamic fascist goons executing a Sunni cleric in cold blood and dragging his body through the streets with a lot of fervor and joy, while children play around.
    I am sorry that you wish to see more of this happen when you demand “US get out – Iraq should be left to Iraqis themselves”.

  • hamidreza says:

    I am not sure how planned the Hayy Ur assault was. If it were an opening of a front on Sadr and his militia, then it would have been executed under better controlled conditions. There would have been better recognition of the risk of negative propaganda.
    Apparently the Islamists dragged the dead bodies from the militia station to the mosque next door, and made it appear that the assualt happened in the mosque on ordinary worshippers. They may even have shot and bombed their own mosque – something that they have done repeatedly in the past to garner sympathy. For example, it is pretty well accepted that the assassination of Baqir al-Hakim, founder of SCIRI in 2003, in front of his mosque with over 100 Shiite worshippers dead, was the job of Sadr or Iranian hardliners.
    The US is going after some of these Shiite death squads in order to play fair with the Sunnis. It is unclear if this was the opening of a new front, in the manner that it was executed. Al-Qaeda still poses too much of a threat to destabilize Iraq. It would be interesting to see what the Sunni party’s reaction would be to this raid. Will they push the US version or the Sadr version of the events, or remain silent?

  • Inside the UIA

    Courtesy of The Fourth Rail:
    More reports of possible divisions between SCIRI and Jaafari’s Dawa party, and the greater game with Iran
    The Shiite United Iraqi Alliance is often viewed as a united block of Islamist, but the fact is there are se…

  • Lisa says:

    Calm down there Hamidreza and think before you throw around words so casually…
    First of all, I spell things wrong all the time…and I was wrong to correct him especially since it appears that I was wrong!
    Secondly, I never said That I Demand the US get out. Those are your words. I said that THE IRAQI people have to form the way their government is run. Now on that subject, I realize that these people have NO Idea what it is like to live in a free society therefore making it rather a tough job for them to fight for one. I realize there are terrible people trying to stop any kind of progress toward a free Iraq. Hence our American Armed Forces and billions of American dollars are there to aid the Iraqi people.
    Thirdly, I take great offense to your suggestion that I DESIRE WANT or WISH in any way, shape or form that I WANT TO SEE MORE OF THIS HAPPEN as you state ” I am sorry that you wish to see more of this happen when you demand “US get out – Iraq should be left to Iraqis themselves”.
    Finally, what country are you from? Inquiring minds would like to know.
    Be nice, all you had to say was that I was incorrect instead of throwing around HATEFUL, HATEFUL words!

  • Lisa says:

    Patrick, I am sorry if I offended you.
    I was wrong.

  • hamidreza says:

    I guess I did come out a bit too strongly there … You are so ambiguous in the way you explain things, that it can be interpreted in many ways. As a Muslim from the Middle East, it appears to me a bit of “Ketmaan”. To me, the comments appear to advocate an abandonment of Iraqis to the wolves. It is difficult to be on a discussion board and not create misimpressions, if one does not talk straight and open. But I agree – my reaction was too personal. Here I repeat what I had to say earlier in another thread:
    Lisa writes: “The Iraqis have to really desire freedom…we can’t actually “give” them freedom. It is their choice.
    The implications of this is that if they are left to their own, they will install misogynistic, repressive, and absolutist Shariah law, and one man dictatorship for life, not only on the few Islamist fanatics, but on the whole country and many generations to come. The implications of this is that dissidents to clerical rule will be assassinated and eliminated for the next 50 years, while we watch and scratch our heads. The implications of this is that a radical anti-west regime will emerge that will spend billions of dollars that you pay for the gasoline you consume, at $65 a barrel instead of $3 a barrel, which will then be used to fund the Islamicization of North America and Europe.
    Lisa, have you ever seen a bunch of raggedly and rebelious children and teenagers go and organize their own school, set up their own curriculum, and bring in their own teachers, and then attend the classes?
    Whenever you think children should be organizing their own schooling system, free of outside adult help, then I will agree with you.

  • hamidreza says:

    Lisa says: I said that THE IRAQI people have to form the way their government is run.
    You see dear Lisa, this can be interpretted in multiple ways.
    Are you saying that a democratic constitution does NOT apply to Iraqis? That if they decide to abandon human rights and minority rights, then so be it? And it is not the business of the world community as to what constitutional system the Iraqis adopt, as long as they adopt it themselves and others are excluded?
    Are you saying that if they wish to institute Shariah law and rule of the mob, that they should be free to do that, and Shariah law is equivalent to modern democratic law?
    Are you saying that they should be confined to a liberal democratic constitution, but the US should not interfere with its implementation. What about elections getting rigged – does the US or UN have a right to monitor and interfere in that?
    Having so little to evaluate this statement, would you not say that it is not unreasonable to interpret it in a negative way: it’s more important for the Iraqis to arrive at their own system, no matter how anti-humane it may be, than it is to have a decent state. Sort of like “the means justifies the end”.

  • Michael says:

    We all agree, people must desire freedom. But they proved it 3 times in elections, up to 11 million voted in conditions of death threats and fear. They turned out better than Americans. That is a disgrace to us, not them. My worst fear was a possible flat tire, or waiting in a line.
    Having been in countries like Belarus, gives one a small glimpse of what’s happening in Iraq. Intimidation rachets up and you’re in contact with a corrupt society, run by tyrants and you realize – my God, what is going on here? And you ask the very same questions – why put up with this? Well, one reason is life itself. Fear of losing family is stronger, not our own lives.
    People in Belarus want freedom too. Wanting it enough to die for it though? Waiting at bus stops in Vitebsk while Belarus soldiers(nervous kids to me) stood around with their fingers on the trigger of AK-47s gave me pause. As someone born into a free society I was astounded at what I saw. And my exasperation clearly showed on my face. People looked at the ground as in humble servitude. I could not understand when my friend told me to stop looking at the soldier. Heck, I wanted to talk to him! It was 1998 before the Beast that is Lukashenko broke the laws, formed his own parliament, extended elections rules for purpose of keeping himself in office. It burned me at the time and I felt genuine pain for Belarussians. But for the first time I truly experienced a small taste of Thugocracy.
    I fully understood why Mothers and wives did not ask their husbands and sons to rebel. They knew the consequences, the prison, the missing persons never to return. Now, 8 years on and look at what is happening in Belarus today? People hopitalized by brutality of Lukashenko’s police and army. Hundreds taken away and many families still do not know when they will be free or where their children are as it is mainly “youth” that is rising up to the dictator. This has been going on since 1998 and the people are rising up even more now. The brutality will increase in an attempt to quell freedoms call. So Lisa, do you send your son or daughter to the front line? Knowing they may be harmed, skulls broken, concusions, bones fractured, maybe even death? Or maybe you settle for living a little longer with the current situation and dire economics, hoping and praying for peaceful transition? Afterall, most live peacefully as long as they do not vote against the Dictator, at the point of a gun on every main street. They do have food and shelter, much like our ‘ghetto’, 5 or more sometimes crammed to a single room. Put yourself in their shoes, would you send your family out to protest? To run for office as opposition? Knowing they could disappear? We protest freely, knowing friends can bail us out easily with a lawyer to boot and rule of law to protect us. is a link that gives some details and links of Belarus.
    So, I can understand why Hamidreza as a Muslim who knows better than most of us I am sure about death squads, militias and fanatic zealots. I do not pretend to know his experience, but from his post, his concerns, he seems to understand that people cannot be free while Thugs rule and at times countries like ours, like Britain, Australia, Japan, many others must stand for these people until they can be trained, given confidence in self-rule.
    This takes time. It is not a movie for George “I’m so brave” Clooney to self-agrandise about himself over and over again as if he truly speaks for the people while posing for pictures.
    No, while Clooney makes 20 million a pop and critiques our leaders, he does nothing to stand for those in real trouble, a death struggle. And the sad truth is millions in our country listen to him and believe the schmuck’s diatribe.
    We are so fortunate here, truly blessed. I hate to think of what is going on in places like North Korea – with full lockdown of all free media. At least in Iraq we are getting multiple feeds so we know what thugs like Sadr are like and we can speak out against him – and we CAN DEMAND our media do the same. By writing CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX and others we can demand they print, film and speak about the attrocities of the enemy. And they can do this without putting down our own military. There is a good and evil here and we must remind our Media darlings of the truth as in, America is on the side of truth and freedom. We may not always get it right, mistakes are made, but the full balance is we’re fighting to free a people who have no experience and it will take time.
    Sadly, until North Korea falls, we will not know the size of death and destruction. It could be millions.
    Iraqi’s have proven they want freedom. Over 150,000 now are trained and fighting with their very lives, many have died fighting for freedom. America must stand firm by them to complete not just our mission, but to help young, intelligent Iraqi’s stand up to the Thugs and the Zealots like Sadr. Its a long, thankless job for the most part with many dull roles which go unreported every day by sometimes pebble-headed reporters who refuse to recognize this truly historic occassion. If we as Americans stand by our troops, we will win and Iraqi’s will be free, truly free.
    No one here wants retreat, nor will we as long as Bush is in office. We all want victory and our soldiers can easily deliver it. This little punch into Sadr’s gut was a message delivered to Sadr, Iran and even Syria and thugs in alliance.
    I agree we must do a much better job of filming and maintaining report space of all operations and we certainly should not allow rival gangs, thugs, or militias media to film and report propaganda. Our military should be ready to position support teams wiht Police taped off areas, and keep all militias and onlookers out as ambulances and investigators close off the areas. We should be filming and infiltrating and exposing any talks or meetings and crucial strikes so the other side cannot use it against us – and if at all possible, put it on nationwide TV if they catch someone like Sadr plotting death to other Iraqi’s. He is scum of the earth, no more religious than a walnut. He came in from Iran as their doberman. He did very well as he was invited to Syria. We should now know it is a well orchestrated event between all the parties that met in Syria. I can only hope we start taking them out one by one.
    Don’t get to caught up or upset over day-to-day events. There will be back and forth movement. As we determine who all the villains are on boths sides to a free Iraq. They know now we will use force. The state dept, our ambassador and military is making this clear now in recent statements.
    This is the same game played with Israel since 1948, 1967, 1973. When they could not win militarily, they attacked with suicide bombers, propaganda campaigns, misinformation.
    We know Iran, Syria, AQ, Sadr, could all be making deals on the side since they all at one time or another have in the past. In fact, we know there are players all over the Middle East, Russia, China, Bosnia, Somalia, Sudan. Each with their own reasons for trying to topple America’s effort at freedom and representative government for the people of Iraq. An unstable Iraq gives many nations reasons meddle. Russia expecially longs for us to fail. Iran and Syria doubly so.
    If I can figure this out as a layperson, so to can our military and intelligence services. Much is under the cover that we never hear or read. We are fighting a war on many fronts.
    The fact that some info came out about Russia helping Saddam is a signal. Expect more documents to turn up showing interesting facts in the future.
    I can only hope for one more front on the war to be opened – that of technology in alternative energy sources. We need to drain all these oil-beast of money as fast as we can. The faster we can introduce technology to rid ourselves of oil dependency also allows us to export and sell tech around the world. Its a no brainer. Less cash flow to the enemy, more to ourselves.

  • Lisa says:

    This is all I am saying nothing more nothing less.
    Our forefathers fought and died for our freedom…and it took years. It was a choice that Americans made to live free or die trying. This is what the Iraqis will have to do unfornately.
    And no I cannot imagine what it must be like for them.
    Here is what most people thought we were going to do: Topple Saddam and to help discourage the people from falling once again underneath the heavy rule of dictatorship and to provide military support and political education. They voted 3 times and are now in the process of sorting out their government, is that correct? If they succeed at establishing a government they are free but they will have to continue to fight and die to keep that freedom it appears.

  • Lisa says:

    Plus our leader has told us that we must fight this war to preserve our freedom. So we fight to preserve our freedom also.

  • Lisa says:

    You commented above:
    So Lisa, do you send your son or daughter to the front line? Knowing they may be harmed, skulls broken, concusions, bones fractured, maybe even death? Or maybe you settle for living a little longer with the current situation and dire economics, hoping and praying for peaceful transition? Afterall, most live peacefully as long as they do not vote against the Dictator, at the point of a gun on every main street. They do have food and shelter, much like our ‘ghetto’, 5 or more sometimes crammed to a single room. Put yourself in their shoes, would you send your family out to protest? To run for office as opposition? Knowing they could disappear? We protest freely, knowing friends can bail us out easily with a lawyer to boot and rule of law to protect us.
    We have sent America’s sons and daughters to the front line for the sake of others and to preserve freedom many, many times. American blood has stained many lands in the pursuit to free others and maintain our freedom.
    Would I willingly send MY daughter for any war- No! That is my maternal instinct to protect my child. However that would have to be her choice whether or not to fight, protest or run for an office when she reached adulthood.
    We have the right to protest freely because our forefathers fought and died for that right. Today our soldiers are fighting and dying on behalf of our freedom and the freedom of others. So don’t dismiss that as if we were just plopped down here in America with no cares, fears or worries…we are always fighting somewhere for some good cause but we are not God. We cannot fix everything. We don’t have super powers. We cannot see into the future. We don’t have a magic button to push and “poof” we know exactly what to do, when to do it or how. We hear day after day that we are the target of terrorists and that we could be attacked at any time. We are having to adjust to this threat while maintaining our freedoms here. We are learning just like we should be as to how we should go about fighting this war but we cannot do it alone.
    I realized from the time of “shock and awe” and seeing the aftermath with the Iraqi people going wild that these people were like children just released from a long period of being in a locked room. And I wondered aloud “What in the world are we going to do now?” And you know what? I still think we don’t know how to maneuver through this situation. We are learning as we go along.
    Plus on top of that all we have are still to this day pulling bodies from houses in New Orleans. We are still trying to repair our broken shorelines that were ravaged by hurricanes. We are putting out fires all over the place. We have people here struggling to eat because they live below the poverty line. We have people with no homes.
    We are fighting to keep this nation together as there are great divisions here.

  • tblubrd says:

    When I read these comments, what jumps out at me is how similar they are. I think Lisa, Michael, and Hamidreza are all saying pretty much the same thing – and I think they’re right.
    1) Iraq has to form it’s own government – and like Bill noted, that process will get interesting sooner than later. And you all agree to that model.
    2) There is still plenty of violence in Iraq – but Iraqi’s want it to end. Doesn’t matter what we think of it or whether we need to abandon ship, the Iraqi’s want it to end. Hopefully we have enough spine to stay there to help them. Leaving would be a huge and catastophic mistake.
    3) Judging by Lisa and Michael’s comments, I think we can all agree with Hamidreza that George Clooney is a jerk (I feel that Bill thinks so too?). Note that Clooney is critical of the Bush Admin so much that insulting them is expected of him – someone whose last name is mostly “Looney”.
    You folks are an interesting read – thanks to you all and thanks Bill, again, for having such an interesting site.

  • TallDave says:

    These problems are small, relative to what we’ve already overcome. Remember Fallujah?
    The road ahead in Iraq is clear. Now it’s just a question of whether we have the will to walk it.
    That is to say, there are no more major contingencies or failure points ahead (like the first elections in Iraq, establishing an interim gov’t, creating and ratifying a constitution, removing Saddam, taking Fallujah, etc). Between the liberalizing, inclusive processes of democracy and the superior firepower/training of the IA/Coalition, the problems will be inexorably ground into insignificance from both sides.
    It’s fairly amazing that so few people seem to understand this; I can only attribute it to the near-total lack of perspective in reporting (for instance, the MSM carried virtually nothing about the extinction of no-go areas that occurred in 2005, esp. along the river ratlines, which was probably the most critical non-political development in the country and the war in that year). Of course, later on it will all have been obvious and inevitable.

  • Lisa says:

    Tall Dave,
    It has been told to me that most of our patriots died with our grandparents generation…
    I don’t know how true that is.
    As far a mass media lack of perspective, here is what most Americans see and feel:
    They are informed of very, very little about what is going in Iraq, just little spots here and there. You might say well there are these blogs and so forth but most people get in the internet to play games, email and bid on stuff on Ebay. I think the public should be informed of the good, bad and the ugly through via the ole’ boob tube also!
    Plus, once the public feel it has been lied to more than once they tune out anything that refers to help further the cause of war. The trust is gone as far they can see.
    Also, there is more than a gulf between Iraq and America. There is so many differences between the two that it further makes it difficult for people to maintain their resolve to see this through.
    And there are many who still remember Vietnam and fear the same in this situation.
    Moreover people feel as if they have no voice with the current administration.
    Now the reason that we are still there is because the American people realize the repercussions of leaving…repercussions on the Iraqi people and upon our society.
    Notwithstanding what I just stated does not mean that this war was and is not worth waging, it just means the public relations for it have not been exactly the best.
    Since I have been on here, on Bill’s blog, I have changed my opinion on some things about this war. It has given me a perspective on the war that I would not have if were not for seeing Bill on CNN. I had already been researching and reading but I feel that there is a certain passion and reason that goes on here that helps me understand this war…so if someone comments here with things that make you angry because they don’t see it the same way as you do, try to answer with kindness and understanding so that they may see your perspective on things…
    Hey, what happened to our Middle Eastern guy??


Islamic state



Al shabaab

Boko Haram