The key lessons of America’s recent wars: failing or losing in grand strategic terms

This analysis examines each of America’s grand strategic failures in war-fighting since 1945, and its failures to learn the right lessons from these wars.

Contemporary social movements in Iraq: mapping the labor movement and the 2015 mobilizations

This study shows that the emergence of trade union organizations and social movement organizations in the post-war era played an important role in shaping Iraq’s current political, social, and economic landscape beyond the meta-narratives of war and sectarianism.
Briefing paper

Public sector reform in Iraq

Iraq’s public sector has shown formidable resistance to reform. The goal of this briefing is to guide policymakers, international financial institutions and development agencies in their design and implementation of public sector reform programmes in Iraq.
Literature review

Community-based mental health and wellbeing support for refugees

This Evidence Check was commissioned by the NSW Ministry of Health to provide a summary of evidence from Australia and other countries related to the effectiveness and appropriateness of community-based psychosocial support services and programs for refugees and asylum seekers.

Syria: Australian military operations

This paper provides a summary of Australia’s military operations in Syria and an overview of key associated issues, particularly those relevant to the Parliament. Many of these matters are also relevant to the conduct of operations in Iraq, but this paper does not specifically address...

At any cost: the civilian catastrophe in West Mosul, Iraq

In the battle against Islamic State in west Mosul, Iraqi and US-led coalition forces failed to take adequate measures to protect civilians.
Discussion paper

After Mosul: a grueling start down a very long road

Building on his in depth reporting in Mosul in late 2016 and early 2017, Matt Brown explores the fight for this vital city in Iraq and the challenges that face the Iraqi Army, Iraqi people, their government and the wider coalition forces, including Australia, who...

Water governance in the Tigris-Euphrates Basin

Turkey, Syria and Iraq depend on the Tigris-Euphrates river system for their food and water security. Both rivers have contributed to interstate tension and hostility, and the region is yet to agree on a water-sharing mechanism that could lead to more amicable relations.

The fog of foreign policy: why only ‘least bad’ options are available in Syria, Iraq and other global hotspots

Foreign policy is typically a blandly bipartisan affair in liberal democracies like Australia and the United States. Although different slogans are employed by left and right, major political parties support broadly liberal foreign policy goals. Both sides of politics want to preserve peace and national...

The role of youth in countering violent extremism and promoting peace

“I am an anthropologist. Anthropologists, as a group, study the diversity of human cultures to understand our commonalities and differences, and to use the knowledge of what is common to us all to help us bridge our differences. My research aims to help reduce violence...
Discussion paper

Australian foreign fighters: risks and responses

In this analysis, Andrew Zammit argues that Australians fighting in Iraq and Syria pose a threat to Australia’s security and examines the options for responding to that threat, including through non-coercive means. Key Findings Australian foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq pose a serious national...

Strike from the air: the first 100 days of the campaign against ISIL

Overview: This report is the first publication from a continuing, open-source study of the coalition campaign against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). With Australian blood and treasure committed to the efforts of the coalition, it is important for ASPI to provide...
Fact sheet

Fact Check: It's war, not 'a mission': Abbott incorrect on Iraq action

Prime Minister Tony Abbott claims Australian use of air strikes and Australian special forces to fight Islamic state militants in Iraq amounts to "a mission" rather than "a war".

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

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.

UNHCR Global trends 2013

The UN refugee agency annual statistics show that more than 51 million people were forcibly displaced at the end of 2013, the largest number since the end of World War II. Half of the world's refugees in 2013 were children. UNHCR's annual Global Trends report...
Conference paper

Expeditionary warfare in the age of global terrorism: a critical assessment of Britain's war against Al Qaeda

The war against Al Qaeda and its allies may well become the defining conflict of our age. Certainly it is cited as evidence of a transformation of war that is sweeping away older modes of warfare. This paper seeks to explain the reasons for the...

The Australian Army and the war in Iraq 2002 - 2010

This report, written by Albert Palazzo, an Australian Army official, details Australia’s participation in the Iraq War. Once classified 'secret,' the report was released with 500 redactions and referred to by the Army as an 'unofficial history that reflects the author’s own views.'

Iraq: the forgotten issue

On the most fundamental moral question the country faces, almost nothing has been promised, writes Greg Gardiner.

Duties of Australian personnel in Iraq

The Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee devoted much of its examination during the budget estimates hearings in May 2004 to the matter of the duties of Australian personnel in Iraq particularly with regard to the treatment of Iraqi detainees. Since then, the...

Intervention and the left

The quest for democracy shouldn’t obscure the real lessons of Iraq, argues Clive Hamilton.

Morality and foreign policy

The intense debate over the war in Iraq and American foreign policy has raised age-old questions about the rights and wrongs of intervention in the internal affairs of sovereign states, the pre-emptive use of force and the 'export' of democracy, but there has been little...

War in Iraq: preliminary defence and reconstruction costs

As the major combat operations of the war in Iraq appear to be drawing to a close, it is important to put in context the financial costs of Australia's military contribution. This Current Issues Brief gives some preliminary estimates of military costs up to now...

Media under fire: reporting conflict in Iraq

The war in Iraq raises again the issue of media coverage of conflict and the public's right to know. News that the United States military has 'embedded' 500 journalists in its fighting units suggests that the public will receive a more complete picture than it...

After Iraq: a military solution in North Korea?

The military action to forcibly remove the regime of Saddam Hussein raises the question of whether to apply a similar solution to the Kim Jong-Il regime in North Korea. This paper outlines the difficulty of a military solution in the North Korean situation.

Iraq: issues on the eve of war

This paper examines the objectives and plan of the US in post-Saddam Iraq and the Middle East. These include the humanitarian and security problems and the regional and wider impact of a war on Iraq.