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Iran Hero of American 2003 Iraq War Not Villian

Editor’s Note: This paper is an exploration into the underlining facts of events in Iraq during 2003 to 2004, and it is built solely on the United States’ official document called The U.S. Army in the Iraq War, Volume 1 2003-2006. I have inserted the page number in brackets as a form of footnotes.

Editor’s Brief Bio: William Church has an intelligence background and worked for the United Nations Security Council Expert Panel in the Congo between 2004 and 2005 investigating war crimes in Rwanda and Eastern Congo.

It is the author’s position that a careful non-biased reading of the facts shows that Iran’s relationship with the Shi’a forces inside Iraq changed at the end of 2004 with increasing overt involvement in 2005 and beyond. Iran’s strategic shift was at the request of Shi’a forces because al Qaeda’s Zarqawi had a documented plan of genocide against the Shi’a, had implemented that plan and a full genocide was underway in 2004. The United States failed to intercede even though they had intercepted the official plan and knew Zarqawi’s intent.

Fact One: A careful reading of US government documents reveals personal testimony that describes the relationship of the Sunni and Shi’a populations prior to the US invasion and prior to Zarqawi. This supports the view that although there were tensions prior to the US invasion they did not extend to personal communal warfare and genocide.

Fact Two: The United States government documents show that it gave very little planning to what they referred to as Phase IV, after the toppling of government. The invasion put the United States in the position of the governing authority, and it failed at this most basic obligation. [248]

Fact Three: The United States, by its own analysis, failed to prevent the civil war/genocide and it was fully aware of the genocide effort. It willfully failed its primary obligation as a governing authority and therefore, and it is complicit in the genocide. [269]

Fact Four: As cited in the US government document, noted Iran expert Brian Fishman, described Iran’s position as one of reluctance regarding too direct interference in Iraq. It had a prior push and pull relationship with the Shi’a of Iraq and was sensitive to those geopolitical aspects. Prior to 2005, Iran’s strategy was to sit outside the borders of Iraq, watch events unfold, and provide any assistance to the dominate Shi’a groups, as long as it did not involve overt involvement. In addition, SCIRI, a leading Shi’a group in Iraq, fully supported by Iran, had a stated position prior to 2005 of not attacking coalition forces. [183]

Fact Five: In January 2004, the United States forces captured Zarqawi’s courier who had a document outlining his planned genocide. The letter made it clear Zarqawi planned the ethnic cleansing of Shi’a in Iraq. This constitutes the basis of a genocide charge along with the execution of this plan. [267]

Fact Six: Zarqawi conducted the following acts of ethnic cleansing with implied, through non action, approval of the United States forces:

December 2003 four attacks at Shi’a targets in Karbala.

January 2004 killing of 200 Shi’a Ashura pilgrims.

August 2004 Zarqawi took control of Fallujah and conducted the wholesale slaughter of Shi’a civilians. Prior to the presence of Zarqawi’s foreign al Qaeda fighters there was relative peace between the Sunni and Shi’a communities.

Personal testimony of Ali Hussein [345]. “I never had any trouble being a Shi’a in Fallujah during all my years there. But as the foreigners began to take over, we were pushed aside and threatened.”

Fact Six: In December 2004 in direct response to the uncontrolled ethnic cleansing of Iraqi Shi’a, Qais al Khazali (affiliated with the Sadr forces) requested Iran to make their Revolutionary Guard available to stop the ethnic cleansing. [391] Iran changed their non-overt involvement policy to stop the ethnic cleansing and started training Shi’a militia for self-defense against both Zarqawi and coalition forces.

Refuting additional charges against Iran. The United States has charged Iran with supplying IEDs to anti-coalition forces being responsible for the deaths of hundreds of US soldiers. A careful reading of the facts show that the US government failed to protect ammunition stockpiles of the Saddam regime once they became the ruling authority. The total of uncontrolled ordinance, much of it became IEDs, was over 600,000 tons. [202] The Sunni resistance forces between 2003 and 2004 were the first to use IED technology and they were not supported by Iran. After 2005, the United States government has implied Iranian involvement with advanced IED technology, but the core skills existed in the Saddam regime and prior to Iran’s overt involvement.


The above facts demonstrate the following:

The United States government failed its basic obligation to maintain order after the invasion when it became the ruling authority. This failure was willful with Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld being notified of the lack of manpower to secure Iraq and a request for additional troops to maintain order. Instead, Rumsfeld, with total disregard of international responsibility ordered the opposite, which was the reduction of soldiers to 100,000. This left the US commanders unable to maintain order. [208].

The United States, as the ruling authority, had full knowledge of the planned ethnic cleansing and failed to act even once it began. This failure makes the United States complicit in the ethnic cleansing.

Finally, Iran’s overt involvement only came after an official request by Shi’a forces in response to the on-going ethnic cleansing conducted by Zarqawi forces.


Iran should be considered the hero of the 2004 al Qaeda ethnic cleansing in Iraq for upholding the international genocide convention, which the United States failed to support in Iraq.



William Church

30 July 2019