Iraqis cannot suggest ties with Israel

Iraqis who took part in a meeting that reportedly suggested ties between Israel

The uproar is not surprising. It is part of posturing in Baghdad against Israel. Underpinning the reaction is not Iraq’s bureaucracy or even average Iraqis, but rather the hand of Iran and its militias in Iraq who want to use the country as a platform for attacks on the Jewish state, the US, and others.

It is important to understand the background here. Iraq has attempted in the past to posture as being at the forefront of anti-Israel struggles in the region. Under Saddam Hussein’s regime, the country led regional rhetoric against Israel, even firing Scud missiles at it during the Gulf War. The missiles were the last gasps of a failing regime that had already exhausted itself invading Kuwait and threatening Saudi Arabia, provoking a large US-led coalition that ejected Saddam from Kuwait and led Iraq to ruin.

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