by Jason Ditz
Despite the Pentagon announcing their latest deployment of combat troops into Iraq in the context of an “invitation” by the Iraqi government, and insisting they had consultations, Iraqi PM Haider al-Abadi continues to insist the US deployment was neither discussed with the government nor welcome.
In his latest statement, made through his official Facebook page, Abadi reiterated that no foreign ground troops from any country had been requested by Iraq, and that any new deployment would be viewed as an “act of aggression.”
The US has been steadily increasing troop levels in Iraq and Syria, with Defense Secretary Ash Carter bragging the US now has “tens of thousands of personnel” in the region. The deployments have fueled growing objections from Shi’ite militias the government is depending on in the war.
The most recent announcement had several major militias threatening to shift their focus from fighting ISIS to fighting the growing US presence in Iraq, and this likely obliged Abadi to change his own talking points to keep on their good side.