We hear again and again from Washington that we have turned a corner in Iraq and are on the path to victory. If so, it is a strange victory. Shiite religious parties that are Iran's closest allies in the Middle East control Iraq's central government and the country's oil-rich south.
First, the statement is untrue. Iran's closest allies in the Middle East are Hezbollah and Syria. Second, while the statement has a hint of truth to it (i.e., some members of the Iraqi government are aligned with Iran), it ignores that many members of the Iraqi government view Iran as a existential threat to the Iraqi state. Third and finally, even if it were completely true, so what. Iraq is a democracy, and democratic nations are free to choose who they want to align with. America can handle Iran regardless of whether Iraq aligns with it or not.