Iraqi forces accompanied by US military personnel conduct raid that leads to over a dozen arrests; Among those detained, one is said to be a high-ranking member of the IRGC; The purpose of the raid was preemptive in nature.

Late Thursday evening, a US-Iraqi coalition team conducted a raid that targeted the Iranian-backed Kataib Hezbollah group. The event took place in southern Baghdad and led to over a dozen arrests, one of whom is said to be a senior official of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

Not only was the raid preemptive in regards to future attacks on US personnel, but this same group is believed to be responsible for several attacks in recent weeks, firing rockets at US military bases.

Iraqi security forces are also said to have retrieved a minimum of 10 rockets. One source stated that this terror group was planning additional attacks on the Green Zone, as well as the Baghdad International Airport. Both of these locations are where US troops reside.

There was no shortage of controversy over the recent election of Iraq’s new prime minister, Mustafa al-Kadhimi. Perhaps now, we’re seeing the tip of the iceberg as to why this was the case. Under past Iraqi administrations, something like this never would have taken place, but al-Kadhimi, unlike those before him, is an advocate of US military personnel.

Iraq, much like Lebanon, has strong Iranian influence in their government. This is part of the reason he received such strong pushback as he moved into power. Iran no longer has the same leverage in Iraq with al-Kadhimi at the helm.