Iraq: The U.S. Surge

IRAQ: A Tenuous &#39Peace&#39 in Al-Anbar

A semblance of calm belies an undercurrent of violence, detentions and fear across Iraq’s volatile al-Anbar province.

IRAQ: Detentions Escalate in Diwaniyah

Detentions have become commonplace in Iraq, but now more than ever before people are being detained after being accused of membership in "militias supported by Iran."

Q&A: ‘U.S. Politics Turning Communities Against Each Other’

"As long as the U.S. troops stay in Iraq there will be violence," warns Gilbert Achcar, professor of development studies and international relations at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies.

IRAQ: Executions Not Leading to Reconciliation

The executions of former regime officials are creating greater division, rather than reconciliation, among Iraqis.

IRAQ: Infighting Increases Instability

Increasing conflict and finger pointing between leading Shi'ite political blocs are heightening instability in war-torn Iraq.

IRAQ: Toward National Reconciliation or a Warlord State?

While the vast majority of analysts here agree that sectarian violence in Iraq has declined sharply from pre-"surge" levels one year ago, a major debate has broken out as to whether the achievement of the Surge's strategic objective - national reconciliation - is closer or more distant than ever.

US-IRAQ: What Does the ‘Good News’ Really Mean?

More than seven weeks ago, U.S. media attention on Iraq peaked as Gen. David Petraeus and Ambassador to Iraq Ray Crocker delivered their much anticipated evaluation of the George W. Bush administration's "surge strategy" before Congress.

IRAQ: Where Better Security Brings No Reassurance

The much touted "surge" of U.S. troops in Baquba has caused more problems than it has solved, residents say.

POLITICS-US: Cheney Raises the Rhetoric Against Iran

In the harshest speech against Iran given by a top George W. Bush administration official to date, Vice President Dick Cheney Sunday warned the Islamic Republic of "serious consequences" if it did not freeze its nuclear programme and accused it of "direct involvement in the killings of Americans".

US-IRAQ: Unable to Defeat Mahdi Army, U.S. Hopes to Divide It

Although the U.S. military command's frequent assertions that the primary threat to U.S. forces in Iraq comes from Iranian meddling, its real problem is that Shiite cleric Moqtada al Sadr's Mahdi army is determined to end the occupation and is simply too big and too well entrenched to be weakened by military force.

POLITICS-US: Far Right Sells Iraq War to "Values Voters"

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, then U.S. President Richard Nixon appealed to the country's "Silent Majority" to oppose growing anti-Vietnam War sentiment in the United States.

POLITICS-US/IRAQ: Sheikh&#39s Killing a Blow to Bush

In what was at least a symbolic blow to George W. Bush, a prominent Iraqi tribal sheikh and self-styled leader of the "Sunni Awakening" movement against al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) was assassinated just hours before the U.S. president was to make his latest appeal for public support for his Iraq strategy.

IRAQ: No Refuge Within or Outside the Country

U.S. occupation authorities and successive U.S.-backed Iraqi governments have done little to stem the flow of Iraqis fleeing their war-torn country since the beginning of the occupation.

President Bush meets with Gen. Petraeus at the White House in January. Credit: White House photo/Eric Draper

POLITICS-US/IRAQ: No Exit

After two days of Congressional testimony by Washington's top two officials in Iraq, prospects for a substantial withdrawal of U.S. military forces there before the end of President George W. Bush's tenure at the White House look as remote as ever.

U.S.-IRAQ: Fallon Derided Petraeus, Opposed the Surge

In sharp contrast to the lionisation of Gen. David Petraeus by members of the U.S. Congress during his testimony this week, Petraeus's superior, Admiral William Fallon, chief of the Central Command (CENTCOM), derided Petraeus as a sycophant during their first meeting in Baghdad last March, according to Pentagon sources familiar with reports of the meeting.

POLITICS-US: Neocons Put on a Surge-Stravaganza

With U.S. General David Petraeus's eagerly anticipated final report on Iraq due on Sep. 15, supporters of the troop surge are busily trying to set the stage for the report that they believe will refute their opponents.

POLITICS-US: Grim GAO Iraq Report Belies Official Optimism

As the U.S. Congress prepares for a critical September assessment of progress in Iraq, a draft of an upcoming report by Congress's nonpartisan investigative arm states that Iraq has met only three of 18 congressionally mandated benchmarks for progress, in contrast to an earlier White House report which claimed "satisfactory" progress on eight of the benchmarks.

POLITICS-US/IRAQ: Still No Light at Tunnel&#39s End

While there have been some improvements in Iraq's security situation over the past seven months, the level of overall violence remains "high" with only modest improvements possible over the next six to 12 months, according to a new study by the U.S. intelligence community released here Thursday.

U.S. President George W. Bush speaks the VFW on Aug. 22, 2007. Credit: White House

POLITICS-US: Bush Campaigns to Sustain Military "Surge"

Opening a new campaign to sustain his "surge" strategy in Iraq, President George W. Bush Wednesday compared Washington's ongoing struggle there to both World War II and the Vietnam War where, he said, Washington's withdrawal led to disaster for "millions of innocent citizens."

Iraqi special operations forces, advised by U.S. Special Forces, conduct a combat operation in Baghdad, Aug. 14, 2007. Credit: U.S. Navy

POLITICS-US: High-Level Support Ebbs for Surge

Washington's policy makers are growing dissatisfied with the George W. Bush administration's troop surge in Iraq and a majority agrees that the world is becoming more dangerous for the United States, according to a poll released Monday.

POLITICS-US: Anbar "Turnaround" Undercuts War Rationale

In hailing what he has called an "almost breathtaking" turnaround in Anbar Province that has weakened al Qaeda as a triumph for his new military strategy in Iraq, Gen. David Petraeus has put a favourable spin on a development which actually challenges the central rationale for continued U.S. military occupation of Iraq.

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