Tehran Times | Mohammad Jafari: Millions of Iraqi people, who gathered in Baghdad on Friday, urged the U.S. troops to leave their homeland otherwise they will face another Vietnam war, the managing director of Al Nakhil News Agency says.
“Over 2 and a half millions of Iraqis from all walks of the life, including Shiites, Sunnis, Kurds, Christians, who have gathered in Al Tahrir Square in Baghdad, have unitedly urged the U.S. troops to leave their land,” Mohammad Ali al-Hakim told Tehran Times on Friday afternoon.
He further said, “This is not an ordinary gathering. The entire popular forces, within the framework of the Resistance Front, including Hashd al-Shaabi, Kataeb Al Hezbollah, Saraya Al Islam, Al Fatah Coalition, Sadr Movement, Bebelion Christian Movement, Al Nojaba Movement, the Parliamentary Al Saeroun Coalition and so many other political factions along with Grand Religious Leaders (Marjaeiyat) have participated in the demonstration against the U.S. presence in Iraq.”
Al-Hakim went on to say, “The gathering is a real referendum which has nothing to demand but expulsion of U.S. troops and closure of the U.S. bases in Iraq.”
“The Iraqi parliament drafted a resolution on expulsion of U.S. troops from the country a couple of weeks ago. People here are shouting their expulsion, so, they must leave our country otherwise we will make Iraq into a new Vietnam for them,” Al-Hakim underscored.
“Since 1920 popular demonstration against the British occupiers, Iraq has not witnessed such a great gathering,” al-Hakim said, advising the U.S. to take the demonstration serious.
Assassination of General Soleimani awakens Iraq
The Al Nakhil manager added U.S. President Donald Trump made a “childish mistake” by ordering the assassination of General Soleimani, the commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Quds Force, and Mahdi Al Muhandes, the deputy commander of Hashd al-Shaabi, in an air raid in Baghdad on January 3.
“Now martyrs Soleimani and Al Muhandes are more dangerous for the U.S. troops than prior to their assassination.”
U.S. violates Iraq’s sovereignty by assassinating official guest of Baghdad
Al-Hakim blasted the U.S. for staging military operation inside Iraq to assassinate General Soleimani who was on an official visit to Baghdad, adding that the move was in violation of the country’s sovereignty as well as international law.
The U.S. troops assassinated two military commanders, who had fought and rooted out Daesh terrorists, he said, adding it caused Iraqis to realize that Washington is the enemy of those who did not allow Daesh to rule over their country.
Trump’s policy in Iraq serves only Israel’s interests in region
Al-Hakim pointed to the outcomes of Trump’s military operations in Iraq and Syria and said, “Undoubtedly, the U.S. tries to stay in the region, including in Iraq, because they have to protect their allies in Tel Aviv. The U.S. operation against the Resistance Front is completely to the benefit of the Zionist regime of Israel.”
Iraq is not afraid of U.S. sanctions
“These people that have gathered in Baghdad and are chanting slogans against the U.S. troops, are not afraid of Washington’s threats of imposing sanctions. We are a country with very good international relations. Our economy is not restricted to deal with the U.S. We have very powerful trade partners across the world which can be replaced by the U.S,” Al-Hakim added.
U.S. will understand only language of force
Al-Hakim further said, “In my idea, the U.S. will not withdraw its forces from Iraq via dialogue. If you come and see their embassy in Iraq covering an area 80 times bigger than a football stadium with more than 26 towers and around 21,000 of staff, you will realize that they have not brought this huge number of people and facilities to leave them simply. They have long term plans in the region. They want to control all the regional nations from their largest embassy worldwide in Baghdad. They have 11 bases in Iraq. They want to remain in the nearest possible distance to Iran.”
He added that dialogue is not sufficient to force Washington forces to leave Iraq.
“Within the next few months, we will see new developments in Iraq which will accelerate pullout of U.S. forces,” he predicted.
Iran saves Iraq from Daesh, U.S. denies dispatching arms
Al-Hakim added, “Based on an agreement between Washington and Baghdad over military cooperation inked in 2007, Iraq called on the U.S. to fulfill its undertakings under the agreement to arm the Iraqi army to counter Daesh which had occupied the city of Mosul in 2014 but the Pentagon replied that they can send the requested arms in 2020. Shortly after, the Resistance Front in Iraq called on General Soleimani and told the whole story. In the shortest time possible, may be 4-5 hours, several Iranian military planes carrying arms and ammunitions landed in Baghdad airport. The weapons were enough to repel attacks from Daesh terrorists. If there was not Soleimani there was no Iraq now.”
Iran missile attack on U.S. forces a historic turning point
Al-Hakim also pointed to Iran’s missile attack on Ein Al Assad military base in western Iraq, used by the U.S. forces, on January 8, saying, “The missile attack was a destructive blow on the hegemonic power. It was a crushing response to the occupiers’ operation in assassination of anti-terrorist commanders in Iraq. The White House found out that they can’t do whatever they want without any reaction. The missile attack ruined the U.S. undefeatable image in front of regional people.”
Nothing will appease us but expulsion of U.S. troops from region
The senior journalist reiterated that the Resistance Front in Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Gaza, Palestine, Yemen and wherever people are angry about presence and meddling of the U.S. military in the region will continue the path of resistance until they manage to force the U.S. air, ground and naval forces to go back home.