Pentagon orders preparations to destroy Kataeb Hezbollah in Iraq
Militiamen from the Iraqi Imam Ali Brigade take part in a military parade on August 8, 2015 in the city of Najaf. The group was one of many Popular Mobilization Forces militias. HAIDAR HAMDANI/AFP/GETTY IMAGES
Date: 2020-03-28 14:12
The US Department of Defense has ordered its military commanders in Iraq to prepare for potential operations to destroy the pro-Iranian Kataeb Hezbollah militia group, New York Times reported.
Unnamed sources who spoke to the NYT said top US commander in Iraq Lt. Gen. Robert P. White wrote a memo in which he advised the Pentagon against such plans, saying that it would divert resources from fighting ISIS and risk jeopardizing current deals with the Iraqi government that allow US troops to operate in the country.
The report about the supposed Pentagon orders comes more than a week after the US-led coalition said it would redeploy hundreds of troops in Iraq to new bases in the country or to bases in different countries, according to coalition and US officials, with one calling it a “historic” move.
Earlier this month, at least 18 Katyusha rockets were fired at a military camp Taji in Iraq, killing two American soldiers and a British soldier.
In January, a US drone strike in Baghdad killed top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani and the PMU militia’s deputy chief, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.