Suspicion that the US is collaborating with Daesh (also known as ISIL/The Islamic State), instead of fighting the military group, is spreading among Iraqis, primarily due to the country's minimalist approach toward the crisis.
To Americans, accusations that the US government is helping Daesh may seem ludicrous.
However, many Iraqi fighters and civilians claim they have seen evidence of collusion between the US and the notorious terrorist group citing, for instance, videos allegedly showing US helicopters airdropping weapons to the militants, The Washington Post reported.
The idea that the US is supporting Daesh is being persistently promoted via social media and voiced in parliament by Shiite politicians in Iraq, US military officials claim.
In one popular video, recently released on a Shiite militia group's Facebook page, a lawmaker with the country's biggest militia group, the Badr Organization, waves seemingly new US military MREs (meals ready to eat), allegedly found at a recently seized Daesh base in Baiji, saying it is proof that the US supports terrorists.
The US military's Baghdad-based spokesman Colonel Steve Warren said the charges are "beyond ridiculous."
Many accuse the US of "creating" the antagonist so that it could fight to restore its damaged image in the region, while others assume America wants to assert its control over Iraq and throughout the Middle East in order to control oil supplies.
These ideas are triggered by the ubiquitous belief that US should be doing more in the Middle East. This confusion of outcomes with intentions has resulted in the popularization of conspiracy theories. According to Warren,
The US military reported near-daily strikes in support of the offensive to recapture Baiji and continues to respond to requests for strikes in the vicinity on a regular basis.
However, the fighters there claim there were no strikes by the Americans at all and that the only air support they received was from the Iraqi air force.
Naseer Nouri, a spokesman for the Ministry of Defense who himself thinks the allegations are groundless, said America is "so slow", it doesn't surprise him that some Iraqis think they are supporting Daesh. "We don't believe the Americans support Daesh," He said.
"But it is true that most people are saying they do, and they are right to believe that the Americans should be doing much more than they are."