The murder of Baghdadi and Washington’s crisis in the Middle East

28 October 2019

Donald Trump’s Sunday morning speech announcing the targeted assassination of Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) leader Abu Baker al-Baghdadi was another degrading spectacle expressing the criminalization of the US government and the terminal crisis of American democracy.
Trump reveled in what he described as the “ruthless,” “vicious” and “violent” killing of the ISIS leader, claiming that he died like a “coward” and a “dog.”
Describing Baghdadi and his followers as both “losers” and “savage monsters,” Trump asserted that, as a result of the US special operations raid into Syria, “the world is a safer place.”
This is, of course, all nonsense. The strategic value of Baghdadi’s death is negligible. By all accounts, he was by the time of his killing a sick man who had been badly wounded in a 2017 air strike, forced into hiding and playing little role in the operations of ISIS. All that will come from his assassination and from Trump’s thuggish and provocative rhetoric is another wave of terrorist violence.

Baghdadi Evaded “2 Or 3” American Raids Before “Critical Tip” Led To His Downfall

Little over one month after US newspapers published reports about a new audio message and image of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the semi-mythical terrorist kingpin, who has reportedly been killed several times in the past, allegedly detonated a suicide vest during a raid by American special forces. The explosion killed him, and several of his children, according to the official account of the confrontation, and a DNA test was promptly conducted on location to ascertain it was indeed Baghdadi who was killed, the perplexing narrative goes.
However it happened, the killing of Baghdadi was a major PR win for Trump (who has been touting the fact that ISIS has been “99%” eliminated for months).  But according to Bloomberg, it almost didn’t happen. Baghdadi had previously evaded several American attacks in the weeks prior to his death, and there were some doubts about whether this critical tip was still good.
The CIA first started receiving “surprising” information about Baghdadi’s general location over the summer. According to the tips, he was hiding in a village deep inside a part of northwestern Syria controlled by rival fundamentalist groups. Per the NYT, Syrian and Iraqi Kurds were tremendously helpful in providing this information. But the final tip that helped inspire the raid came after the arrest and interrogation of one of Baghdadi’s wives and a courier, the NYT reported.

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We are clearly in for some very nasty trouble in the Middle East!