6 Items

Sunni Guard in Mosul


Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Affairs

Land Grabs in Iraq

| Apr. 10, 2017

"With the fall of the Islamic State (also known as ISIS) seemingly imminent, nearly every Iraqi political group and its associated militia have been rushing to take control of the newly liberated territories in the governorates of Anbar, Diyala, Kirkuk, Nineveh, and Salahadin."

Iraqi Special Operations Forces in Mosul

Creative Commons

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Affairs

The New ISIS Insurgency: What Jihadists Do After Losing Territory

| Jan. 09, 2017

"In addition to militants, ISIS insurgency cells depend on nearby civilian populations, some of which side heavily with the fighters. That, the small size and mobility of the insurgent groups, and the expansiveness of the territory make it difficult for security forces to pinpoint insurgents' whereabouts. In turn, the forces have had to rely on civilian intelligence. But many locals aren’t talking—at least to anyone allied with Baghdad. Although weapons and ammunition still come from ISIS-held areas in Mosul and Hawija, local civilians provide much of the food, information, and anonymity."

Smoke rises from burning oil fields in Qayara, some 50 kilometers south of Mosul, Iraq, Oct. 31, 2016. For 2 weeks, Iraqi forces and their Kurdish allies, Sunni tribesmen, & Shiite militias have been converging on Mosul from multiple directions.


Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Affairs

Iraq After ISIS: Why More Fighting May Be In Store

| November 3, 2016

"...[S]o long as Iraq's central government lacks the power to enforce order on its own, the country will be prime territory for nonstate armed groups. That is troubling, since the more armed groups appear in Iraq, the harder it will be to bring the country’s competing factions to the table to reach political solutions to their problems."

Iraq's elite counterterrorism forces raise an Iraqi flag after retaking Bartella, outside Mosul, Iraq, Oct. 21, 2016.


Analysis & Opinions - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

What ISIS Can Teach Policymakers

| October 21, 2016

"Compared to other terrorist groups and even legitimate governments around the world, ISIS has done fairly well with security policies in the area (at least better than the Baghdad government). However, that is not the case when it comes to other public concerns."

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Affairs

The Downfall of ISIS: Why Foreign Fighters Have Become a Liability

| September 16, 2016

"ISIS leaders have stabilized the situation in Iraq by completely removing foreign fighters from administrative and political positions and relegating these fighters to IT-related intelligence work, IED factories, and technical tasks. In some areas, foreign fighters are even housed in rural villages to keep their interactions with locals to a minimum. In response, disenfranchised foreign fighters have resorted to small acts of sabotage."