US Suspected of Role behind Raiding Hezbollah Brigades Headquarters in Baghdad
By Staff, Agencies
The headquarters of Iraqi anti-terror group within the Popular Mobilization Units [PMU], better known as Hashd al-Sha’abi, came under attack in Baghdad, raising suspicions about the US role in Iraq.
More than a dozen members of the Hezbollah Brigades [Kata’ib Hezbollah] were reportedly detained during the raid in southern Baghdad in the early hours of Friday. Initial reports said several commanders of the anti-US group, which is integrated into Iraq's security forces, were among those arrested.
Their fate remains unclear, with some unnamed officials saying they are in the custody of Iraqi security services, but according to PMU sources, all those detained have been handed over to US forces.
An Iraqi official initially told Reuters that at least three of the group's detained commanders had been transferred over to the US military.
A number of local media outlets also reported that American forces were involved in the raid.
One tweet by a PMU member said that Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi had apologized to the anti-terror group's head Hadi al-Ameri over the incident.
Back on April 6, a member of the Iraqi parliament's security and defense committee warned against the ulterior motives behind the redeployment of US troops to various military sites across the Arab country, saying Washington was drawing up plans to target PMU commanders.
On March 27, the New York Times newspaper reported that the Pentagon had ordered a secret directive, which called on US military commanders to prepare a campaign against the Hezbollah Brigades, which is part of the PMU.
But the top US commander in Iraq had warned that such a campaign could be bloody and counterproductive.
Lieutenant General Robert P. White wrote in a blunt memo that a new military campaign would also require that thousands more American troops be sent to Iraq.
PMU fighters have played a major role in the liberation of areas held by Daesh [the Arabic acronym for Takfiri ‘ISIS/ISIL’ group] terrorists ever since the group launched an offensive in the country, overrunning vast swathes in lightning attacks.
In November 2016, the Iraqi parliament voted to integrate the PMU, which was formed shortly after the emergence of Daesh in Iraq in 2014, into the country’s military.
The popular group, however, is a thorn in the side of the United States which is widely believed to be managing an array of terrorist groups, including Daesh, to advance its ‘Israel’-centric agenda in the region.