A leading British think tank is claiming that the Islamist uprising in Iraq can be traced to failures that followed the invasion of the country by U.S. and U.K. troops in 2003. Chatham House blames a failure to rebuild Iraq after military invasion and the hanging of its strongman leader Saddam Hussein. Richard Bestic reports from London.
British think tank: Islamist uprising in Iraq result of failuresA leading British think tank is claiming the Islamist uprising in Iraq can be traced to failures that followed the invasion of the country by U-S and U-K troops in 2003. Chatham House blames a failure to rebuild Iraq after military invasion and the hanging of its strongman leader Saddam Hussein. Richard Bestic reports from London.
Less than a year after threatened airstrikes against Syrian government targets, the U.S. has instead carried out attacks on the self-proclaimed Islamic State, ironically one of the very groups fighting the Syrian Government.
The airstrikes, according to Senior Research Fellow Jane Kinninmont, are a testament to the continuing primacy of U.S. counter terrorism policies.
“Today the U.S. seems to have more limited ambitions, and it’s main focuses there are on counter terrorism and energy security,” said Kinninmont.
The rise of the Islamic State, said Kinninmont, is a symptom of the failure to rebuild Iraq in the wake of the U.S. and U.K. invasion 11 years ago. With a vast armory of seized military hardware much of it American and an estimated fortune of 800 million Iraqi Dinars taken from captured banks in Iraq, the Islamic State is one of the best funded and armed militias in the world.
“The interesting question is what happens if they try to advance further in Syria,” Kinninmont said. “Where does the international community stand on this force seen by the West as a deadly enemy, versus Bashar Assad, who Western countries have said should be removed?”
Currently, the British government has no plan to return militarily to Iraq, choosing instead the option of humanitarian aid. However, such the crisis on the ground in Iraq and across the border in Syria, that no-one here is making any long term projections.