An Iraqi court recently ruled that Ali Musa Daqduq, a Lebanese Hezbollah terrorist accused of helping to coordinate the 2007 abduction and murder of five American soldiers in Karbala, Iraq, should be released due to "lack of evidence.
The decision comes only months after the Office of Military Commissions started filing charges of murder, terrorism and espionage against Daqduq, marking the Hezbollah terrorist as the first potential defendant without connections to al-Qaeda or the Taliban to be tried before an American military commission.
The Iraqi courts decision, however, comes as little surprise to the many American intelligence officials and lawmakers who expressed grave concern in December 2011 when, as the remaining American troops exited from Iraq, Daqduq was the last of 1,000 US detainees handed over to the Iraqi government.
That concern was pointedly expressed by Republican Senator Saxby Chambliss, vice chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, who said, "Given Iraqs history of releasing detainees, I expect it is only a matter of time before this terrorist (Daqduq) will be back on the battlefield.
Those suspicions were heavily fueled by the Iraqi governments stated promise that Daqduq would only be prosecuted on the single charge of illegalentry into Iraq with a forged passport, a charge which carried a maximum sentence of five years.
However, the Obama administration insisted that it had been assured by the Iraqi government that Daqduq "would be tried for his crimes, criminality which included murder and terrorism.
Unfortunately, that assurance proved rather shaky in that it rested on an Iraqi promise that an investigative judge would consider the American allegations, a promise that apparently never materialized. As one intelligence officer said, "This is one of many things we just dropped, adding that Daqduq "will go back to the Iranian terror machine.
Daqduqs participation in the Iranian terror machine had begun in 2005 when, as one of Hezbollahs most experienced covert operatives, he was sentto Iraq to help the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps al-Quds Force (IRGC-QF) arm and train Iraqi Shiites to fight American and coalition forces.
At that time, the IRGC-QF was spending upwards of $3 million every month in an attempt to replicate the Hezbollah militia model by using its terrorist proxy to train small groups of Iraqi Shiites in what were termed "Special Groups. (...)(...more)