Iraq

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ISIS Used Chlorine Against Iraqi Cops: Report

Patients in Syria suffer after possible chemical weapon attack

(Newser) - On the heels of reports that ISIS militants are learning to fly fighter jets , Iraqi officials say the group has also used chemical weapons—specifically, chlorine gas. Eleven Iraqi police officers were hospitalized on Sept. 15 after being poisoned by the stuff, according to doctors, and the officers say ISIS... More »

4 Blackwater Guards Convicted in Deadly Iraq Shooting

Security contractors found guilty in infamous 2007 incident

(Newser) - Four former Blackwater security contractors were convicted today in federal court for a 2007 mass shooting in Baghdad that left Iraqi civilians dead, the AP reports. (Some accounts cite an original death toll of 14, but the BBC notes that an Iraqi investigation later raised the total to 17; about... More »

Chemical Weapons Found in Iraq Were Kept Secret

NYT : Troops who served in Iraq allege serious injuries, incompetence

(Newser) - US troops headed into Iraq more than a decade ago to hunt down weapons of mass destruction, but they found something else instead: massive numbers of chemical weapons, which injured soldiers and prompted a possible Pentagon cover-up, the New York Times reports. In a stunning narrative based on interviews and... More »

ISIS Takes Army Camp, Baghdad Bombings Kill 30

Islamic State closer to controlling Anbar province

(Newser) - Militants with the Islamic State group today captured a military training camp in western Iraq, inching closer to full control of the restive Anbar province, as a spate of deadly bombings shook Baghdad, hitting mostly Shiite neighborhoods and leaving at least 30 dead. The attacks, which came as Iraqi Shiites... More »

ISIS' New Weapon: Water

Insurgents commandeering precious commodity to strengthen position

(Newser) - Even when ISIS militants can't maintain control of Iraq's cities and villages, they have another weapon at their disposal: water. The insurgents are increasingly cutting off water to villagers, extorting local governments, and flooding homes, schools, and farms in an effort to gain the upper hand by usurping... More »

McCain Slaps Obama: We Predicted Rise of ISIS

'Of course' we are at war, says senator

(Newser) - In a 60 Minutes interview last night , President Obama asserted that the US had "underestimated" the looming threat posed by ISIS, but John McCain strongly disagrees. "We predicted what would happen if we didn't leave residual force [in Iraq]," McCain tells CNN . "His intelligence comments—... More »

Khorasan Is the Terror Group to Worry About

Officials point to danger at home from al-Qaeda cell

(Newser) - More than a third of the 22 US airstrikes in Syria weren't aimed at ISIS. Instead, they targeted a lesser-known al-Qaeda cell known as the Khorasan Group—an organization that some US officials see as a "more direct threat" to the West than ISIS, the New York Times ... More »

NY Man Was ISIS Recruiter: Federal Indictment

Mufid Elfgeeh also charged with plotting to kill US troops back from Iraq

(Newser) - A man from Rochester, NY, was indicted yesterday on charges of attempting to help three people (two of them FBI informants) travel to Syria to take up arms with ISIS, reports the LA Times . The Justice Department statement further alleges that Mufid Elfgeeh sent $600 to a potential recruit in... More »

US Strike Near Baghdad Marks New Phase in Fight

Strikes on ISIS were in direct support of Iraqi military

(Newser) - An American airstrike in Iraq yesterday was the 162nd since early August—but unlike the previous 161, this one took place near Baghdad and marked what Central Command calls the start of "our expanded efforts beyond protecting our own people and humanitarian missions," the Guardian reports. The strike... More »

How Obama's ISIS Speech Went Over

Mixed reaction to plan to 'degrade and ultimately destroy' terror group

(Newser) - President Obama laid the foundation last night for his strategy to "degrade and ultimately destroy" ISIS, citing possible expanded airstrikes from Iraq into Syria and explaining how these efforts would be different from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. "If you threaten America, you will find no safe... More »

Obama: I Won't Hesitate to Hit ISIS in Syria

President says US-led coalition will go after militants 'wherever they exist'

(Newser) - In a prime-time address tonight, President Obama laid out the US strategy to "degrade" and "destroy" ISIS, and he made clear that he's ready to expand US airstrikes from Iraq into Syria . The president says a US-led coalition will go after militants from the Islamic State "... More »

On Deck at NATO Summit: ISIS, Ukraine

World leaders will also discuss the current mission in Afghanistan

(Newser) - A NATO summit today in Wales originally meant to focus on the ongoing Ukraine crisis will shift gears to include high-level discussions on the American- and British-led push to address ISIS, reports the New York Times . President Obama and British PM David Cameron penned a joint letter in the Times ... More »

Obama Sends Hundreds More Troops to Baghdad

Embassy protection force brings troop levels over 1K

(Newser) - The US is adding 350 more troops to help protect the American Embassy in Baghdad and its support facilities in the Iraqi capital, raising the number of US forces in the country to over 1,000, officials say. President Obama approved the additional troops for protection of American personnel following... More »

Iraq Forces Break 2-Month ISIS Siege

Backed by US airstrikes, aid drops, town of Amerli back in Baghdad's hands

(Newser) - Iraqi security forces and Shiite militiamen have broken a two-month siege imposed by the Islamic State on the northern Shiite Turkmen town of Amerli, according to various officials. Army spokesman Lt. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi said today that forces "reached" the town; retired general and Amerli resident Khaled al-Amerli confirms... More »

Oil Tanker 'Vanishes' With $100M Cargo

Kurdish ship carries crude that may legally belong to Iraq

(Newser) - The US Coast Guard has lost track of a Kurdish tanker carrying $100 million in disputed oil off the coast of Texas, the Independent reports. Headed for Galveston, the United Kalavyrvta was anchored at least 60 miles off-shore when it vanished from radar screens. The ship's haul fell under... More »

British PM Raises UK Threat Level to 'Severe'

Government thinks attack by extremists is 'highly likely'

(Newser) - David Cameron changed the UK threat level from "substantial" to "severe"—its second-highest level—and outlined measures the British government is taking to combat terrorism at a press conference today in London, reports the BBC . On the heels of the execution of James Foley and other disturbing... More »

US Seeks Allies in ISIS Fight —but Not Assad

Obama may greenlight military action in Syria, expanded airstrikes in Iraq

(Newser) - After OKing airstrikes in Iraq and spy flights over Syria in an attempt to rein in ISIS, President Obama has started rallying international allies to expand efforts against the militant Sunni group—efforts that may include even more airstrikes in Iraq and possible military action in Syria, reports the New ... More »

Islamic State Says It Executed US Journalist

American James Foley is reportedly beheaded

(Newser) - The terror group known as the Islamic State, or ISIS, claims to have beheaded American photojournalist James Foley in retaliation for US airstrikes in Iraq, reports the Washington Post and NBC News . A graphic video purports to show Foley, 40, being executed after reciting a statement in which he refers... More »

US Hit 90 Targets in Mosul Dam Fight: Pentagon

President calls recapture of dam a 'major step forward'

(Newser) - President Obama hailed the recapture of Mosul dam today as a "major step forward" as a barrage of US airstrikes helped Kurdish and Iraqi forces score the biggest victory of its counteroffensive against the Islamic State militants. Obama also urged the badly fractured and largely dysfunctional Iraqi government to... More »

Pope Backs Action in Iraq, Wants UN OK

Pontiff says Islamic State militants must be stopped

(Newser) - Pope Francis, the guy probably least likely on the planet to come out in favor of military action, today did precisely that, telling reporters aboard his plane that he had no problem with the use of force to stop Islamic State militants in Iraq from slaughtering the Yazidi minority. "... More »

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