Sunni tribal disagreements over the role of the Popular Mobilization Forces—which have so far prevented developing a broader security strategy against the Islamic State—might change in the aftermath of Ramadi.
The Iraqi government’s military stumbles gave Iran-aligned militias a chance to push back, but for now Prime Minister Abadi holds on.
Amid the fight against the Islamic State, Iraq is witnessing another struggle for power between Abadi’s nationalist Shia factions and Iranian-backed militias.
If Iraqi parties cannot agree on a unified vision for the National Guard, options will remain limited for the U.S.-led coalition against the Islamic State.
In the Middle East, producers are facing different effects of the recent drop in oil prices. Four oil experts explore the impact of falling prices on the economies of key regional producers.
Although Kobani has spurred a KRG-PYD strategic rapprochement, Kurdish unity across borders remains elusive.
Plans to build a national guard force risk widening sectarian divisions in Iraq and pushing more Sunnis toward the Islamic State.
Although the Islamic State gained access to significant resources in Syria and Iraq, budgetary constraints will hinder the group’s expansionist aims.
Jordan’s attempt to prioritize Syrian and Iraqis refugees leaves its other asylum seekers underserved.
Prospects for an independent Kurdish state are hampered by security challenges, internal competition, and insufficient international support.
As Iraq’s central government struggles against ISIS, the Kurds quietly take another step towards independence.
Maliki’s alienation of Sunni actors is at the heart of ISIS’s success in Iraq.
Despite recent success in Mosul, ISIS is still trying to solidify its fragile gains in Anbar province, particularly following heavy losses in Syria.
Fears stemming from the radicalization of Iraq’s Sunni population could propel Maliki into an unpopular third term.
Due to divisions within Iraq’s Shia establishment, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is losing the allies he would need to achieve re-election in 2014.
Iraq’s new Theater Festival signals an end to Baghdad’s cultural isolation, despite security and censorship hurdles that remain from the past few decades.
Between the division of Baghdad by blast walls and the isolation of the Green Zone, Baghdadis face physical barriers to uniting and demanding political change.
As the Syrian crisis continues, Jabhat al Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq may form a cross-border zone between Iraq and Syria that could threaten regional stability.
As Sunni Arab grievances persist in the face of internal divisions and ineffective protests, Iraq may face renewed violence.
Renewed calls for a majority government in Iraq are gaining momentum, but will this vision ever see the light of day?