The surprise announcement came from the State Department.
Do not travel to Iraq due to terrorism, kidnapping, and armed conflict.
U.S. citizens in Iraq are at high risk for violence and kidnapping. Numerous terrorist and insurgent groups are active in Iraq and regularly attack both Iraqi security forces and civilians. Anti-U.S. sectarian militias may also threaten U.S. citizens and Western companies throughout Iraq. Attacks by improvised explosive devices (IEDs) occur in many areas of the country, including Baghdad.
Per news sources, the United States told people to ‘bug out” of Iraq because of “specific and credible” intelligence that Iranian forces and/or their proxies were planning to target U.S. forces in locations including Iraq. That was behind the Pentagon recommending a carrier strike group be moved to the region, and Secretary Pompeo’s rush trip to Iraq last week.
Investigative Journalist and Iran expert Ken Timmerman gave insight into the source of the Iranian threats last week. Timmerman explained there was recent intelligence that Iran was planning “imminent” attacks on U.S. persons or U.S. assets in Iraq. The intelligence came from an Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) General in charge of information, who was fired by the supreme leader on April 19th and reacted to being fired by defecting to the west.
Iran Commentary, an online news portal that publishes information about Iran’s human rights abuses and illicit activity provided some of the details behind Timmerman’s Report. The defector, General Ali Nasir had a vicious argument with a superior officer, General Hossein Taeb. Nasari walked out of the meeting and left the country.