Press TV has interviewed Kevin Barrett, editor of Veterans Today in Madison, about Iraqi forces encircling Fallujah as part of a massive military operation to liberate the city from the grip of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group.
A rough transcription of the interview appears below.
Press TV: As we can see the Iraqi special forces are on the move and so far being very successful in dealing with the situation on the outskirts of Fallujah. How significant in your perspective is it if the Iraqi forces are able to recapture Fallujah?
Barrett: Well it is very significant. We have had a lot of talk from the Americans who are still trying to occupy Iraq about how this threat from ISIL (Daesh) is a grave threat to civilization, the terrorists are everywhere, they may strike anywhere including in the United States, in Western Europe and so on. And yet the war against this group in Iraq and Syria has been one great deception. For more than two years, the United States has pretended to be at war with ISIL while secretly helping and supplying them and having actually organized them and probably created them out of nothing.
So this phony war on ISIL from the US side is contrasted to a very real war on ISIL from the side of the government of Iraq backed by Iran and Russia, the independent powers. And taking back Fallujah is symbolically very, very important. Of course Fallujah is an important city for many reasons, it is the city of mosques, it is the city that the United States razed to the ground in its invasion of Iraq and it has been the epicenter of terrorism.
So I think Iraq is looking towards a better future today. It looks like we are going to get Fallujah back and it will be incorporated into Iraq; Iraq’s territorial integrity will be maintained and this Oded Yinon Zionist plan to smash Iraq as well as Syria and other countries in the region into little pieces, balkanize along ethnic and sectarian lines in order to facilitate Israeli expansionism will not come to fruition.
Press TV: Well how do you see now the United States reacting to this if Fallujah is taken back and also we know that Washington wanted the Iraqi forces to deal with Mosul right now, they did not see Fallujah as a priority? What is going on in your perspective behind the scenes with Washington? What do they actually want to accomplish there in Iraq?
Barrett: Well there is a lot of double talk out of Washington and that is nothing new. On the one hand Washington pretends to be the most concerned country about Daesh, at existential war with the terrorists ever since the false flag catastrophe of September 11, 2011 but if we actually look at this back and forth between the US and the Iraqi government over how to go about fighting Daesh, what we find is a persistent pattern of deception on the part of the US. We find that the Iraqi government purchased fighter airplanes from the US that could have stopped Daesh in its tracks, that they could have been bombed before they even get started but the US refused to deliver those planes to the Iraqi government.
We also see the US persistently claiming to be calling for reform here and these various kinds of attacks on the Iraqi government for supposedly not governing well. And there may be some truth to the fact that the Iraqi government has made some mistakes; but the US rather than being a productive partner trying to give good strategic advice, it seems, has been actually undermining the Iraqi government. And that is why we have had the Iraqi government explicitly saying it does not want the help of the US in this fight against Daesh because it does not believe that it is sincere. And we have poll showing that the majority of Iraqis know that the US is behind Daesh.
So we cannot take anything we hear from the Americans at face value. If the Americans are saying do not take back Fallujah, if I were running Iraq, the first thing I would want to do is take back Fallujah.
Press TV: And of course that is what we are seeing at this point, the Iraqis heading to Fallujah. How do you see the near future in Iraq … as we see the Iraqi forces and the volunteer forces are on the move and appear to be effective? At the same time we have seen some political wrangling inside of Baghdad itself, [with] many saying that they are external forces trying to control the situation as the forces continue to be on the move internationally. The pressure, do you expect it to be increased in Iraq and by which entity?
Barrett: Well it is a very complex situation. We have all of these foreign countries defending their own interests and getting involved in Iraq and Syria. But I do think that in the big picture what we are seeing here is that since the Russian bombing … that Daesh has lost whatever kind of momentum it ever may have had, and additionally the Russians have made it harder for the Americans to pretend that they are actually legitimately fighting Daesh, the Russians have exposed this as a phony war, so the various kinds of pressures going on right now in Baghdad as this huge American embassy, this fortress that the Americans put up there and said they will never leave and hopefully will be leaving before too long inshallah (God willing), the Americans are concerned that their long-term strategy to control the region in partnership with the Israelis – or maybe I should say in subservience to the Israelis because this is all being done for Israeli interests more than for American interests – that it is coming to the point now where we are seeing an open conflict between the US which thinks it is still occupying and controlling Iraq and the Iraqi government and people.
So I do not see this going …, I do not think we are going to go back into a situation like after the US invasion where there was this huge numbers of American troops committing horrific atrocities and popular resistance, people building IEDs, anything like that, God willing it will not get that bad. But we are certainly seeing a divergence now between the Iraqi government and the Americans who are trying to essentially paralyze it and keep it from being effective, in service to the plan to destabilize the region.
So on one side we have the forces working for prosperity and stability, and that would be much of the Iraqi government, that would be Iran and Russia, and to some extent the government in Syria. On the other hand we have the forces of destabilization and it seems that these forces of destabilization right now are on the run. And let’s hope that they get swept up and we get some stability finally in this troubled region.
Dr. Kevin Barrett, a Ph.D. Arabist-Islamologist is one of America’s best-known critics of the War on Terror.
He also has appeared many times on Fox, CNN, PBS, and other broadcast outlets, and has inspired feature stories and op-eds in the New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, the Chicago Tribune, and other leading publications.
Dr. Barrett has taught at colleges and universities in San Francisco, Paris, and Wisconsin; where he ran for Congress in 2008. He currently works as a nonprofit organizer, author, and talk radio host.