Even President Bush Got Involved Trying to Stop Obama's Pro-Iran Tilt

Obama isn't just selling out Israel to Iran. He's also selling out the Sunnis in Iraq to Iran.


It's becoming increasingly obvious that Obama has sold out American foreign policy to Iran. What happened in Yemen hasn't changed that. And former American allies are getting increasingly desperate to be heard.

The Shia-controlled Baghdad government has ensured that weapons are funneled to Iraq’s Shia militias, many of which are under the sway of Iran and are cleansing Sunni influence in areas of eastern Iraq. The result is that, in Anbar, the Islamic State has gotten stronger, while the tribes remain weak.

The Anbar delegation that arrived in Washington on January 18 hoped to reverse this policy, arguing that the United States should bypass the Baghdad government in arming the tribes against ISIL as they had once done against al Qaeda. Doing so, they believed, would spark an Anbar “Re-Awakening.”

They arrived confident that they would be heard; after all, the Obama administration had made the fight against the Islamic State a priority and Allen had promised during meetings with Sunni tribesmen in October in Amman, Jordan, to pass their request for arms on to the Pentagon.

But as their meetings in Washington went on, their hopes started to fade.

Biden surprised the delegation on the afternoon of January 22 by dropping in on their White House meeting with Phil Gordon, the administration’s coordinator for the Middle East, North Africa and the Gulf Region. The voluble Biden was at his best, smiling broadly and accompanying his handshake with his patented shoulder grip. Biden reassured the delegation that Abadi’s government was working hard to restructure Iraq’s military, and he urged them to cooperate with him.

Despite the administration’s vow to defeat ISIL, the United States places a greater priority on its nuclear negotiations with Iran, and the administration was leery of upsetting the Shiite Iranian leadership by arming the Sunni Anbar tribes. In effect, Anbar’s leaders believe, the U.S. refusal to arm Anbar’s tribes directly means turning a blind eye to Tehran’s growing influence in Iraq and Iran’s policy of arming of Iraq’s Shia militias.

As one Anbar leader said: “The truth is that our Ministry of Defense is owned lock, stock and barrel by Tehran—and Joe Biden knows it. So he smiled, patted us on the back, and sent us on our way.”

“Our country is being turned over to the Iranians,” he said, as Abu Risha sat, in silent agreement, “and the Americans are looking the other way.”

Somewhere along the way former President Bush got involved.

But then, on the morning of January 31, the sheik received his unexpected telephone call from Bush. “I hadn’t expected to hear from the former president,” Abu Risha told me the afternoon after the phone call, “but we had a very detailed discussion. I told him what we needed, that this was a crisis.

He listened closely to what I had to say and he agreed—more people needed to hear our message.”

The sheik then recounted to me Bush’s September 2007 visit to Anbar, when the then-president met with his brother, Sheik Abdul Sattar, whose leadership had sparked the Anbar Awakening that had united the Anbar tribes in their victorious fight against al Qaeda in 2006 and early 2007.

Abdul Sattar paid a heavy price for the meeting: Just 10 days after seeing Bush, al Qaeda planted a bomb in his car, and he was killed in the explosion.

Bush remembered this in his conversation with the sheik. “The president hadn’t forgotten my brother’s sacrifice,” Abu Risha told me.

The result of these exchanges—the Bush telephone call and the meetings with Petraeus, McCain and Graham—seemed to confirm for Abu Risha that while the administration was committed to defeating the Islamic State, its opposition to arming the tribes by bypassing the Abadi government reflected its fears that to do so would offend Tehran—and endanger the P5+1 talks on Iran’s nuclear program.

Obama isn't just selling out Israel to Iran. He's also selling out the Sunnis in Iraq to Iran.