by Jim Lobe
Unsurprisingly, the same people who loudly championed the 2003 invasion of Iraq are clearly at it again, although this time they want not only to see US troops fighting in Iraq, but also in Syria.
Even while they insist that they don’t want a “new American ground war” in [...]
by Wayne White
American political and media commentary on ISIS (which calls itself the Islamic State) since the beheading of James Foley has been flush with exaggeration and skewed focus. Identifying Foley’s murderer is desirable but far less important than tackling ISIS proper and its leadership. Unfortunately, many ISIS cadres have done [...]
James A. Russell
The predictions of doom in the Middle East that are dominating thinking in the foreign policy commentariat of Washington and other capitals over the spread of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) could use a little perspective.
An unlikely source of insight transpired the other day when [...]
The Underrated Saudi Connection
by Patrick Cockburn
[This essay is excerpted from the first chapter of Patrick Cockburn’s new book, The Jihadis Return: ISIS and the New Sunni Uprising, with special thanks to his publisher, OR Books. The first section is a new introduction written for TomDispatch.]
There are extraordinary elements in the present [...]
by James A. Russell
The apparent beheading of American journalist James Foley adds a particularly gruesome and tragic twist to the sports event-like reporting of our attempts to thwart the advances of the Islamic State in Iraq over the last week. Foley’s execution will only ensure that the “what to do about [...]
by Shireen T. Hunter
Nouri al-Maliki is no longer Iraq’s prime minister, but his departure does not mean that Iraq’s problems will be resolved easily or soon. A basic change must first occur in Iraq’s domestic politics, the power struggles within its different ethnic and sectarian components, and the behavior of regional and international actors [...]
by Julien Barnes-Dacey
The designation of Haider al-Abadi as the new prime minister of Iraq is a significant step toward opposing the Islamic State if his premiership can be secured and fulfils the potential to create an urgently needed cross-sectarian coalition against the jihadist group.
However, a fundamental ingredient is still missing in [...]
by Paul Pillar
Much current debate in the United States about foreign policy can be boiled down—at the risk of the sort of oversimplification that too often characterizes the debate itself—to the following. On one side are calls for the United States to do more (exactly what it is supposed to do more of often [...]
by Wayne White
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki resorted to a bare-knuckle power play on Aug. 10 in a frantic attempt to forestall his unfolding political defeat. Leaders recognizing the importance of a fresh new government appeared to overwhelm him. With a new premier in the saddle, peeling Sunni Arabs away from [...]
by Wayne White
An old military dictum still applies: no determined enemy can be stopped by air power alone. Much will depend on whether the Kurdish Peshmerga militia proves willing to make a stand against the forces of the Islamic State (formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant). [...]
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