For many years, Democratic Party members have dreamt of “bringing down” President Trump. They probably never thought the Iraqi government could pull off what Clinton and Mueller couldn’t. Kurdistan 24, a news outlet in the Iraqi city of Erbil, reported on Thursday the highest court in Iraq issued an arrest order for Trump.
The head of the council, Faiq Zidan, announced that Trump will be arrested for his “crime” of killing the “leaders of triumph.” The former head of the Iranian-backed Kitaib Hezbollah militia in Iraq, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, was shown behind him as he made the comments.
According to the Iraqi Media Network, Zidan warned that legal action would not be held back.
On January 3, 2020, US drones struck Baghdad, killing Soleimani and Muhandis. After Iranian-backed militia supporters stormed the US Embassy in Baghdad a few days earlier, and after US military personnel in Iraq had been attacked in 2019, Trump authorized the strike.
Before Soleiman’s death, American intelligence agencies determined that General Soleimani had approved an assault on the United States embassy in Iraq and that he was also plotting strikes on American military men in the Middle East.
Zidan and Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani were among the Iraqi authorities who attended the memorial service for Soleimani and Muhandis. According to Rudaw, a Kurdish Iraqi news site, Sudani stated their lives “must not go in vain.”
Because of Trump’s drone strike on Soleimani, Iran’s Islamist dictatorship launched a barrage of missiles toward an American airfield, further escalating regional tensions.
In 2021, the Supreme Judicial Council of Iraq issued an arrest warrant for Trump for the Soleimani murder. On Thursday, Zidan made some statements, but it was unclear if he was reiterating the 2021 warrant or threatening additional legal action. When Al-Monitor asked Zidan for clarification, he did not provide it immediately.
There’s no way the government of Iraq could ever arrange for the extradition of a former American president. If he were tried in Iraq’s prestigious legal system, Trump might be sentenced to death for his role in the Soleimani operation.
This ridiculous arrest warrant poses a threat to the independence of the United States. The Associated Press reported in 2021 that Iraq had issued the same arrest order during Trump’s presidency.
Even if the 2003 attack that toppled Saddam Hussein’s regime was a mistake, a sitting or former president of the United States is not on a comparable footing with a one-dimensional tyrant like Hussein.
The odds of any American administration giving over any previous president to another country are, roughly speaking, zero, even in the severely split political landscape of the United States today.
Iraq’s continued existence as an independent nation is in jeopardy without continued American backing. Iraq would rather be friends with Iran’s Islamist and belligerent leadership than with the United States.
So long as the United States is willing to seek a new partnership with an independent Kurdistan, which longs for liberation from Iraq’s terrible sectarianism, that’s great.