State Dept Official: Iran Remains a ‘Significant’ Threat in Iraq

Officials emphasize the threat posed to US bases in Iraq

In comments to reporters on Thursday, Assistant Secretary of State David Schenker reiterated concerns about Iran attacking US interests in Iraq, saying the administration continues to view them as a “significant” threat.

This was the first official comment out of the State Department since President Trump claimed last week that Iran was plotting a sneak attack, and threatened to make them pay a “very heavy price.” Like Trump, Schenker provided no evidence or details.

This is all built around reports that the US is planning an attack on Iraqi militias they’ve accused of being aligned with Iran. The allegations of an attack seem to be meant to bolster the case for a US preemptive strike.

The occasional stray rocket fire against US interests in Iraq are being blamed uniformly by officials on these militias, and the reality is that even if Iran doesn’t do anything itself, the simple actions of Iraqi factions will be enough for the US to keep talking about a “threat” posed.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.