Iran is forming new proxy forces to increase attacks on U.S in Iraq
While the Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi is getting ready for his first visit to the United States to meet with President Donald Trump, reports indicate increased Iran-backed militia attacks against American forces in Iraq.
According to France 24, as Tehran and Washington compete over influence in Iraq, the gap between Iran-backed forces in Iraq and the Prime Minister of this country who has good relations with the U.S is widening.
The main topic of conversation between Trump and Al-Kadhimi is supposed to be the issue of 5000 American soldiers currently stationed in Iraq.
Al-Kadhimi, who came to power in May of 2020, is facing some challenges from Iran backed Hashd Al-Shaabi militia.
Kadhimi removed these forces from their positions on the border where they were generating huge revenue by organizing smuggling networks and imposing taxes on traders.
Hashd Al-Shaabi, which received a severe blow after one of its leaders, Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis, was killed alongside Qasem Soleimani the head of Iran’s Quds Force, wants the American forces to leave Iraq.
Although the group has denied responsibility for the recent attacks on American forces in Iraq, the videos and comments made in social media indicate that the group is using other militia groups as a proxy for the attacks.
In the past two weeks, there have been 13 rocket and bombing attacks on American bases, American embassy, and Iraqi caravans providing logistical support for American forces. The attacks had very small impacts but served to show the strength of the group.