British officials gave warning yesterday that America's commander in Iraq will declare that Iran is waging war against the US-backed Baghdad government.His evidence:
A strong statement from General David Petraeus about Iran's intervention in Iraq could set the stage for a US attack on Iranian military facilities, according to a Whitehall assessment. In closely watched testimony in Washington next week, Gen Petraeus will state that the Iranian threat has risen as Tehran has supplied and directed attacks by militia fighters against the Iraqi state and its US allies.
The outbreak of Iraq's worst violence in 18 months last week with fighting in Basra and the daily bombardment of the Green Zone diplomatic enclave, demonstrated that although the Sunni Muslim insurgency is dramatically diminished, Shia forces remain in a strong position to destabilise the country.
"Petraeus is going to go very hard on Iran as the source of attacks on the American effort in Iraq," a British official said. "Iran is waging a war in Iraq. The idea that America can't fight a war on two fronts is wrong, there can be airstrikes and other moves," he said.
"Petraeus has put emphasis on America having to fight the battle on behalf of Iraq. In his report he can frame it in terms of our soldiers killed and diplomats dead in attacks on the Green Zone."
In remarks interpreted as signalling a change in his approach to Iran, Gen Petraeus last week hit out at the Iranian leadership. "The rockets that were launched at the Green Zone were Iranian-provided, Iranian-made rockets," he said. "All of this in complete violation of promises made by President Ahmadinejad and the other most senior Iranian leaders to their Iraqi counterparts."Funny, but I remember reading that while it was alleged they were Iranian munitions early in the fighting, further analysis indicated that they were not Iranian. Rather they were a mixed bag of Katyusha rockets (Soviet pre-WWII-designed weapon) and generic mortars bought on the black market and scavenged from the hundreds of munitions bunkers left unguarded in our poorly planned war and occupation.
I also remember all the lies the have come out of the mouth Petraeus. Lies about the worthiness of the Iraqi combat brigades when he was in charge of training them. Lies about the effectiveness of the surge. Really, just about everything.