The Washington Post tells us two things about Iran today, one that we knew and one that we didn’t. First, the obvious: “Tehran’s Influence Grows as Iraqis See Advantages.” Second, the secret: “Troops Authorize to Kill Iranian Operatives in Iraq.” It appears, startlingly, that the US raid of an Iranian consulate and the arrest of six Iranians in northern Iraq a few weeks back was no exception. Indeed, since last summer the Administration has adopted what the Post, in a matter of understatement, called a “more confrontational approach.”
On CNN on Wednesday, Wolf Blitzer asked Dick Cheney: “How worried are you of this nightmare scenario — that the US is building up this Shiite-dominated Iraqi government with an enormous amount of military equipment, sophisticated training, and then, in the end, they’re going to turn against the United States?”
Cheney replied, “Wolf, that’s not going to happen.”
But CNN correspondent Brian Todd reported a day later, “Several military and political analysts say it very well could.” He then added: “Still, one former American military adviser says if US forces don’t train the Iraqis, someone else will, namely, Iran.”
Either the new Iraqi army, dominated by Shia and Kurds, aligns with Iran. Or the new Iraqi army is trained by Iran. Whichever way you look at it, Iran wins.