The Secret of Iraq’s Renaissance? The Multi-Confessional PMU Militias Backed by Iran

On a sandstorm-swept morning in Baghdad earlier last week, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the legendary deputy leader of Hashd al-Shaabi, a.k.a. People Mobilization Units (PMUs) and the actual mastermind of numerous ground battles against ISIS/Daesh, met a small number of independent foreign journalists and analysts. This was a game-changing moment in more ways than one. It …

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Saudi Crown Prince Poised to Take Over As King

The Saudi “anti-corruption” crackdown led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), which initially netted 11 princes and a few dozen ministers and former ministers, has caught up with hundreds of businessmen, who are being detained in the luxurious Ritz Carlton and other hotels in Riyadh. The Wall Street Journal reports the Crown Prince is …

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The Inside Story of the Saudi Night of Long Knives

The House of Saud’s King Salman devises an high-powered “anti-corruption” commission and appoints his son, Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman, a.k.a. MBS, as chairman. Right on cue, the commission detains 11 House of Saud princes, four current ministers and dozens of former princes/cabinet secretaries – all charged with corruption. Hefty bank accounts are frozen, private …

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How North Korea is Freaking Out the US Establishment

The 19th Party Congress has made it very clear that “socialism with Chinese characteristics” – as codified by President Xi Jinping – is China’s road map ahead. Not only the strategy graphically eschews those much-lauded “Western values”; it will, in Xi’s own words, offer “a new option for other countries and nations who want to …

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Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan is seen with his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani during a joint news conference in Tehran, Iran, on October 4, 2017. Photo: Murat Cetinmuhurdar / Presidential Palace/ Handout via Reuters

Iraqi Kurdistan The Fly to Regional Spiders Turkey, Iraq, Iran

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan just visited Tehran and met with President Hassan Rouhani and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. That’s a major geopolitical move by any standards. Iran and Turkey are both part of the Astana negotiations aimed at effecting closure in Syria. Both are regarded by Beijing as key nodes in its Belt and …

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