25 May 2017
English Arabic
ERBIL, Iraq — As Iraq comes closer to ejecting the Islamic State from its last major stronghold in the country, the question is no longer whether it can succeed. The question is whether it will all have to be done again someday. Even a complete military victory over the Sunni extremists in Mosul will not change the reality that there is still no political agreement in place, or even basic trust, that could reconcile Iraq’s Sunni Arab minority with the…
These days, Gen. David Petraeus is far from the battlefield. Petraeus, who retired in 2011, works in New York as a partner at the private equity firm KKR and is chairman of the KKR Global Institute. In his spare time, the retired four-star general is a professor at the City University of New York and the University of Southern California and a senior fellow at Harvard. But his mind is never far from the global issues that confront the United…
U.S.-trained and armed Iraqi military units, the key to the American strategy against ISIS, are under investigation for committing some of the same atrocities as the terror group, American and Iraqi officials told ABC News. Some Iraqi units have already been cut off from U.S. assistance over "credible" human rights violations, according to a senior military official on the Pentagon's Joint Staff. The investigation, being conducted by the Iraqi government, was launched after officials were confronted with numerous allegations of…
BRUSSELS, Aug. 17 (UPI) -- Preparations for the battle of Mosul are well underway. Mosul is Iraq's second-largest city with a population of around 2 million. It has been held by the Islamic State, also known as Daesh, since 2014 and is hailed by the terrorist group as the capital of its self-proclaimed caliphate. Now Iraqi forces, backed by U.S.-coalition airstrikes and with technical support from 500 American troops, have recaptured four villages on the outskirts of Mosul -- Tal…
Iran-backed Shiite fighters in Iraq now number up to 100,000 fighters, the first-known estimate of their size, according to the US military. It was earlier reported that Iran’s Syria-based commander is preparing to retake the Iraqis city of Mosul. In what appears to be a deepening role played by Iran in the fight against Islamic State (IS, ISIS/formerly ISIL), the forces’ estimates range anywhere from 80,000 up to 100,000, according to spokesman Colonel Chris Garver, who confirmed the figure to…

Secret Prisons in Iraq from Najaf to Diyala Tuesday, 09 August 2016 14:46

London – Secret Prisons in Iraq have always been an issue of debate especially after the 2003 change when the Baathist party toppled down with the regime that had been ruling for 35 years. U.S. top officials, including Iraq’s first governor Paul Bremer, admitted their failure in finding a suitable substitute to the former Iraqi opposition leaders. Amid the American failure that formed an authority built on ethnic and sectarian divisions, it seems as though Iran is the party to…
If Mosul were to fall tomorrow it would be a blow - but not a fatal blow - for ISIL. The liberation of Mosul is in the early days of execution, but as the central government in Baghdad and policymakers in the US will soon find out, liberating the city and kicking out ISIL (also known as ISIS) will be the easy part. The real challenge will be finding a political settlement that allows the local Sunni inhabitants to address…
Two years after the Sinjar massacre, the young activist says "the entire world remains silent" In April this year, I had the honor of writing a piece on Nadia Murad for the TIME 100 list of the most influential people of the year. Nadia is a member of the ethnic Kurdish minority Yazidi people, one of thousands who was brutally enslaved by ISIS in Iraq, who now bravely travels the world to raise awareness of the genocide. After writing about…
Now that Iraqi forces, with the support of the international coalition, are gearing up to recapture Mosul — ISIS’s last major stronghold in Iraq — the question that looms high is what will be the fate of the Iraqi Sunni community following ISIS’s inevitable defeat? I maintain that unless the political discussion begins now between the Shiite-dominated Iraqi government and the Sunnis (under the auspices of the US) to determine the fate of the Sunni community, defeating ISIS alone will not end the ongoing…
If the next president decides that a relatively peaceful, prosperous and democratic Iraq is important, then there are two critical lessons to be gained from the Obama presidency. First, even after the defeat of the Islamic State group, peace will be fragile in Iraq. The country will require strong diplomatic and financial support. Therefore, if the next president bows to domestic political pressure and abandons Iraq again, the situation will rapidly deteriorate. Second, the best efforts of the U.S. government…
Baghdad – The controversial “popular mobilization” militias would soon become a military body that would be equal to Iraq’s official forces in terms of capacity and arming, following the footsteps of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), which was formed in a similar manner. An official document signed by Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar Al-Abadi revealed the planned process of converting the militias to a military party equal to counter-terrorism apparatus, including a number of units and fighters subject to direct approval…

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