The Iraq crisis: what’s next for the region?

26 Jun 2014

Summary: Despite the early June military successes by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), the group will neither pose a fatal threat to the Iraqi Government nor cause the collapse of the Iraqi state. The security breakdown in Iraq and Baghdad’s lack of political will to confront Sunni sectarian grievances will, however, continue to provide an attractive theatre for global jihadists. Regionally, a destabilised Iraq will provide an opportunity for Iran to increase its influence there, as well as for Iraqi Kurds to consolidate their control over the north of the country. The greatest threat to Australia as a result of the Iraq violence will be a new theatre for Australians to earn battle experience – possibly returning home as experienced and networked Islamic extremists.

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