The Baghdadi Scam – OpEd


The Democrats and corporate media don’t really oppose what Donald Trump is doing in Syria or anywhere else.

Donald Trump says that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was killed by the United States military. Baghdadi was the founder of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), which is also known as ISIS and Daesh. The name is less important than the fact that ISIL carried out a reign of terror against the people of Iraq and Syria. They did so with the blessing and connivance of the United States government, which used Baghdadi and his ilk to continue a 40-year long practice of using jihadists proxies against secular states in the region.

The announcement of Baghdadi’s death is problematic for several reasons. For one thing, he was said to have been killed on several other occasions. No one knows if he died when Trump said he did, died sooner, or is still alive somewhere. Secondly, in his usual way of undermining establishment protocol Trump publicly thanked Turkey and Russia for assisting. In an odd twist that could only happen in the Trump administration, the Russian defense ministry denied any participation  in the action or any knowledge of it having taken place at all. 

The corporate media, Democrats and Republicans all joined in celebrating Baghdadi’s reported demise. Even those who count how often Trump tells lies suddenly expressed complete confidence in the version of events. Once again we see the embrace of Trump by the so-called resistance if he adheres to imperialist orthodoxy.  The same man who they claim to want to impeach suddenly gets praise as he did when he launched an attack on Syria in 2017. The man mocked as a buffoon can be seen as “presidential” if he kills or even claims to kill people in a far away land.

The tale of an assassination should not be accepted without question. The U.S. claimed that Baghdadi’s body was identified with the help of a DNA sample  provided by an informant who secured a pair of his underwear. The imperialists’ ability to spin tall tales has definitely diminished over time.

The story of Kurds, Turks and ISIL in Syria is complicated but the root cause of all the twists and turns is an old and very simple story. The United States under president Barack Obama used ISIL and al-Qaeda terrorists in an attempt to overthrow the Syrian government. The project was a completely bipartisan affair, with the supposed political rivals in the republican and democratic parties on board with using Baghdadi and his forces for their own purposes.

Trump may be telling the truth when he says he wants to bring troops home from Syria, but the task is more complicated than the sub par president can muster.He is left with trying to mimic Barack Obama, and claiming that the purported Baghdadi assassination is of greater import than Obama rubbing out Osama bin Laden.

Trump has been quite consistent in one way. From the days of his presidential campaign he determined the value of any action through the lense of “taking the oil.” He says out loud what other imperialists try to hide behind talk of humanitarian intervention. Now Syria is his target but his detractors rarely care about the blatant theft of other country’s resources. Usually they turn up their noses because of Trump’s lack of finesse. They don’t really oppose what his administration is doing in Syria or anywhere else.

The Trump team excels only in their level of ludicrous scheming. Iranian oil tankers are mysteriously bombed, a coup is attempted in Venezuela that looks more like a badly managed film shoot, and drones are sent over the Persian gulf in hopes that a shoot down will be a casus belli. Now a man who is seldom mentioned any longer because he may already be dead is said to have been assassinated at an opportune moment.

The corporate media and Democrats are after Trump, not because they want to remove him from office but because they hope the impeachment process is a tool for his defeat. The last thing they want to do is mobilize their voters with policies that would appeal to them. Dragging Trump through the mud of his own making because of an ill considered phone call to Ukraine is their preferred method of returning to the White House.

In the end it doesn’t matter if Baghdadi is dead or when or how he died. The regime change plot failed, other nations like Russia, Iran and Syrian itself are in control of events. Americans may snicker when Trump pays homage to an army dog that he says helped to track Baghdadi but they should remember that Bush and Obama and now Trump are responsible for far greater suffering.

Margaret Kimberley

Margaret Kimberley's is the author of Prejudential: Black America and the Presidents. Her work can also be found at and on Twitter @freedomrideblog. Ms. Kimberley can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)"

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *