3. Iraqi Insurgents Shift Onus of War to New Government

Iraq’s insurgent leaders were braced ready for momentous events n Baghdad this week.

They pulled off a series of coordinated bombings and mortar attacks on the day of Ghazi Yawar‘s unforeseen emergence as president on Tuesday, June 1 and the swearing in of the new government at coalition headquarters in Baghdad a few hours later.

But the timing was fortuitous. Their strikes were aimed at the anniversary celebrations at Jalal Talabani‘s Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) headquarters in Baghdad not far from the foreign ministry.

An attack the same day near the Baiji refinery center was the third in less than 24 hours against an oil target.

The strike in Tikrit was a routine operation by Saddam supporters.

All these attacks claimed 36 lives. But in a departure from past operations, there was no indication the guerrillas had access to prior or real-time intelligence on activities inside the US-led coalition Green Zone headquarters.

Conversely, the 11-page manifesto that the Baath party distributed across Iraq on May 27 was a study in detailed and accurate assessment.

According to a copy obtained by DEBKA-Net-Weekly, the document made three main points:

  1. Armed resistance, meaning the Baath Party, is the only alternative to the new presidency and interim government.

  2. The Baath-led resistance views the new presidency and provisional administration as even more deserving of violent aggression than the American occupiers. The focus of future attacks must therefore swing round to Iraqi targets even more than American ones.

  3. The Baath Party – not al Qaeda – bears the brunt and lead role in this guerrilla campaign.

The author of the manifesto contends that the US military campaign is guided by the rules of crisis management, while Baath fighters operate on the principles of crisis confrontation. Consequently, the Americans are governed by “target dates” while the Baath Party’s campaign is open-ended.

“Our supreme interest is to have guerrilla resistance perceived as a popular campaign, not party-related but open to outside groups as well,” the manifesto said. “This makes room for al Qaeda members, too.”

The document goes on to state that by its efforts to destroy Saddam’s power structure the United States created building blocks for the resistance movement.

The manifesto went on to list the movement’s most immediate targets as being:

  1. The president, presidency and members of the provisional government – even though Yawar’s assassination could place the Baath Party in direct conflict with the Shamar tribes through whose territory most of their weapons and fighters are smuggled in from Syria.
    Every Iraqi, whether Sunni, Kurd or Shiite, who is employed by the new administration.

  2. Iraqis who worked for the outgoing Governing Council, who will be attacked after they are no longer protected by bodyguards.

  3. All UN personnel engaged in Iraqi affairs who will be placed on a par with American targets.

  4. Local and foreign contractors cooperating with the new government.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email