- On January 5th, Iraq voted to seek immediate US disengagement rather than the lesser option of seeking a timetable for withdrawal.
- On January 6th, US command sent a memo agreeing to the pullout outlining the immediate withdrawal logistics. One may surmise POTUS was on board with this approach in keeping with his general wish to pull back from the theater. Congress voted to withdraw troops from Iraq in 2007.
- Later in the day on January 6th, John Bolton, an oil hawk and no fan of US disengagement, announced he is willing to testify in the impeachment trial and will comply with any lawful subpoena.
- Meanwhile, Iraq asked for clarification on some parts of the memo. US Command made revisions and sent a revised version in two languages.
- (January 7th, surmised) POTUS likely conferred with Bolton, they reach an accord on the substance of his testimony, and the Pentagon is informed that the withdrawal is off. Quid pro quo.
- US command in the theater walks back the memo and official state outlets like the New York Times call it a simple mistake, like hitting a SEND key on an internal draft. This official explanation is at odds with the timeline.
- US forces start pouring into Iraq to reinforce bases there. Attention is withdrawn from Iran for the moment and focused instead on defending the US positions in Iraq. The outcome is just as Bolton would have wanted as a quid and POTUS would not have initially wanted, but a quo is a quo.
“…experts say the timing and scale of the attacks suggest that the Russians could be searching for potentially embarrassing material on the Bidens — the same kind of information that Mr. Trump wanted from Ukraine when he pressed for an investigation of the Bidens and Burisma, setting off a chain of events that led to his impeachment.”
|Joker and Parnas|
After texting about the ambassador, Hyde gave Parnas detailed updates that suggested he was watching her. In one text, Hyde wrote: “She’s talked to three people. Her phone is off. Her computer is off.” He said she was under heavy security and “we have a person inside.”