Jun 29 2006
Iraqi and US forces have been battling Shiite Militias, militias which have been staffed by Iranians clearly working to destabilize the Iraq democratically elected government.
Iraqi and U.S. troops battled Shi’ite militiamen in a village northeast of Baghdad on Thursday, and witnesses and police said U.S. helicopters bombed orchards to flush out gunmen hiding in the palm groves.
Iraqi security officials said Iranian fighters had been captured in the fighting, in which the commander of an Iraqi quick reaction force and two soldiers were shot dead by a sniper. They did not say how the Iranians had been identified.
This is very important news if true. It will be hard evidence of Iranians trying to destabilize Iraq, and could be seen as an act of war against Iraq. And Iraqi Shiites will lose a lot of credibility in being associated with Iranian efforts to break apart the fledgling government. If I was the Kurds, I would be having some serious discussions with the Sunnis about now.
Addendum:It seems the attack is quite timely with this report out only hours ago concerning Iranian Intelligence Agents in the same region:
Agents of Iranâ€™s Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) are fomenting unrest in Iraqâ€™s southern city of Basra, the Iraqi daily az-Zaman reported on Thursday.
Az-Zaman quoted Iraqi counter-intelligence sources as saying that fighters were being trained in Lebanon under MOIS supervision and sent via the Iranian border to infiltrate Basra.
Some of the fighters were being incorporated into the al-Hussein Battalion which has been responsible for numerous targeted killings and assassinations in Basra.
The daily quoted the sources as saying that the MOIS was the most powerful and influential intelligence service that had infiltrated Basra and several other key Iraqi cities including the holy cities of Najaf and Karbala.