Qais Khazali, the leader of the Iraqi Shiite militia Asa'ib Ahl Al-Haq, said in an August 26, 2019 show on Al-Ahd TV (Iraq) that he believes neither the U.S. nor Iran genuinely want war, but that Israel wants war because it acts in accordance with ideologies and prophecies that have their roots in the Torah. He claimed that Israel wants war because it sees "Babylon" as its greatest enemy, and he said that there are people inside the American government who are advancing this cause. Khazali also said that the U.S. has been focusing its humanitarian aid to Iraq in the Al-Anbar province because it has a plan to cut Al-Anbar away from Iraq and use it to shelter Palestinian refugees. In addition, Khazali claimed that there is a plan for war to break out between Iran and the U.S. before the end of President Trump's first term, and he said that recent Israeli attacks against camps belonging to the Iraqi PMU and Federal Police have been the first steps in this war.
Following are excerpts:
Qais Khazali: We do not want war. War means damages, blood, and casualties. We lost dear people during the war against ISIS, which was forced upon us. The Islamic Republic says that it does not want war, and it means it. The U.S. does not want war, and I believe that its administration also means it. Who does want war? That is an important question. Whoever wants war should pay its price, and the questions must be directed at them. The Israeli entity, based on ideological and prophetic premises that are connected to what is in the Torah, is the one that wants war. We should pay attention to that and know all the details, because this entity, based on these prophecies, believes that its biggest threat is "Babylon." When they talk about Babylon, they use derogatory descriptions. Is there a will [for war]? Yes, there is. Are there people in the U.S. administration that are working towards it? Yes.
These people do not want Iraq to be stable and strong. They continue [to execute their plan], and we should warn people about it now. There is a real plan and real work being done to weaken Iraq politically and militarily. They strive to cut whole areas off from Iraq and to lease them for decades so that they can be used to absorb the Palestinian refugees.
Why has the U.S. become so humanitarian, and why does it look after the areas that were liberated [from ISIS] and spend money on them? Where is this money being spent? Has it been spent on Diyala? Has it been spent on Salah Al-Din? Has it been spent on Mosul? It has been spent on Al-Anbar. Because the American project – in the service of the Israeli entity – believes that Al-Anbar is a large and vast governorate, and that a large part of it can therefore be cut off.
Interviewer: Is the Asa'ib Ahl Al-Haq militia going to fight in Iran if war breaks out?
Qais Khazali: I think that the plan is for a war to break out before the end of Trump's first term. This is what we are trying to warn against, and we must be aware of it. As I see it, this war has already begun. The Israeli bombing of the military camps of the PMU and the Iraqi Federal Police is an actual step towards war.