Small Wars Journal

Iran Intel Leak: 700 Documents Show How Iran Outplayed the US in Iraq

Iran Intel Leak: 700 Documents Show How Iran Outplayed the US in Iraq by Seth J. Frantzman – Jerusalem Post

US policy has been a mix of guns and butter in Iraq since the invasion of 2003: offering military training and arms and trying to butter up some officials that Washington thought would be its champions in Baghdad. But at every turn an Iranian octopus was lurking, outplaying the ham-handed American attempts to exert influence in Baghdad, even maneuvering Iranian-backed candidates into office with US backing, tricking Washington to make the US think it had “won.” Meanwhile Iran played the long game. New leaked Iranian documents appear to show how Iran did it.

Today the US is still training some Iraqis but it is heading for some kind of an exit eventually. The US wants to shore up the Peshmerga in the Kurdistan Regional Government and also leave a more competent layer of Iraqi security forces, with good units like the Counter-Terrorism Service, to keep ISIS and other groups in check. But America understands that in the long-term, whatever comes out of Iraq will largely be either by Iranian design or in reaction to Iran; the US simply cannot decide thousands of miles away in DC…

Read on.