IMIS…Wildcard in Iranian game in Iraq

Megahed al-Taey

Translated by Shaimaa Shedeed

Pro-Iran militias in Iraq can be found in in all Iraqi’s file where Tehran’s economic, political and military interests lie and even in the geographic files whether in the south, the center or the north of Iraq and the western borders. In fact, its attendance became like “tomatoes” that is used in all recipes and food tables. This is owing to the weapons’ dominance, weakness of law, non-observance of constitution, non-observance of judiciary, failure to eliminate terrorism factors and failure to provide real political solutions beside the military and security ones in addition to other reasons.

IMIS gained religious cover with fatwa related to establishment by the Sistani reference after it had gained military legitimacy through war against ISIS in parliament by passing law of “IMIS authority” despite objections and sectarian context. It also gained a political cover with elections and rigging and an economic cover in the economic offices after joining the trade chamber and participating in activities of scrap, oil and monuments smuggling and in the  investment market. Through policy of fait accompli that is contrary to the constitution and the Iraqi consensus in the parliament and street, many militias controlled the political and military arena and deployed on borders and Sunni cities taken back from the ISIS grip.

Actually, the IMIS penetrates southern and western Iraq sometimes under the claim of “Jihad” and sometimes under the claim of “preserving Iraq’s sovereignty” or “occupation resistance”. IMIS as an authority under the commander-in chief of the Armed Forces (Prime Minister) dissociates itself from many aggressive actions and practices, describing it as individual wrongdoing sometimes and alleging those who commit these deeds were impersonating the IMIS other times.

Some political representatives of the Shiite factions support the militias in order give the IMIS privileges of the “Counter-Terrorism Service” and to be deemed as a terrorism combater. Thus, the IMIS has been classified as an authority (fighting the terrorism) and has a budget independent from the Iraqi Defense Ministry although it is actually a part of it. Like any security system, it shall have been added to the army, the police or the counter-terrorism service but it opened offices in several Iraqi governorates taken back from the ISIS grip and established military headquarters out of city and outskirts. This is in addition to the headquarters of the Iraqi Army or Counter-Terrorism Service teams near the US military bases in some areas especially the north and the center of Iraq in Baghdad, Kirkuk, Saladin, Mosul, Diyala and Anbar.

Many privileges aforementioned are similar to privileges of “Counter-Terrorism Service” and even with one more privilege represented in the right to dominate a land because it has several and varied forces while the Counter-Terrorism is considered a brute force but can’t stay or dominate a gotten back land. Meanwhile, the IMIS is formed of militias made, financed, trained and supervised by Iran and its allies in Iraq, while the Counter-Terrorism Service is trained and supervised by the US in cooperation with the Iraqi government.

Counter Terrorism Service is the least sectarian system and the most professional in comparison to other systems. Unlike the IMIS, it has the least mistakes, not politicized and one of the strongest Iraqi systems that don’t move without a judiciary order or without any threat related to terrorism. As for the IMIS, there is a chaotic trait, sectarianism, politicization, relation with foreign forces and competition with the Iraqi will to respect the Iraqi sovereignty away from Iran.

There are fallacies and violations adopted by the IMIS and militias in the Iraqi arena urge some inquiries that can’t find satisfying answers. Dubbing the “IMIS” as a security system like the Counter-Terrorism Service includes oppression for the Counter Terrorism as the IMIS has barbaric groups of militias do nothing but chaotic bombardment and destruction. For example, counter-terrorism could get back the left coast of Mosul with few fatalities while the right coast that was taken back by the IMIS was exposed to massive destruction. On the other hand, neither the army nor the police nor the Counter Terrorism nominated themselves in the elections as political entities unlike the IMIS who nominated with some figures and blocks in Badr and Asaib groups and whose head  Faleh al-Fayyad unconstitutionally founded a political party and nominated in the elections. Moreover, under the claim of Iraqi sovereignty protection, some militias uphold the anti-US existence trend although the US forces is an alley to the Iraqi state and supports the Iraqi forces by a formal request from the Iraqi government. In fact, the IMIS works for the interest of Iran and pressures the US to decrease the US sanctions against Iran.

Finally, the violations committed by the militias can’t be compared to those of the Iraqi security systems. Actually, it is a wildcard responding to the Iranian orders and cares about the Iranian interests in Iraq. No stability can be reached without institutionalizing the militias after resolving and reorganizing it and prisoning the criminals affiliated to it. The militias’ mind with a sectarian trait can’t build a state or a society and can’t achieve security without proper bases under the state cover.





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