Conclusion : The Iraq legacies and the roots of the ‘Islamic State’

Isakhan,B 2015, Conclusion : The Iraq legacies and the roots of the ‘Islamic State’. In Isakhan, B (ed), The legacy of Iraq: from the 2003 War to the ‘Islamic State’, Edinburgh University Press, Edinburgh, Scotland, pp.223-235.

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Title Conclusion : The Iraq legacies and the roots of the ‘Islamic State’
Author(s) Isakhan,BORCID iD for Isakhan,B
Title of book The legacy of Iraq: from the 2003 War to the ‘Islamic State’
Editor(s) Isakhan, BORCID iD for Isakhan, B
Publication date 2015
Chapter number 14
Total chapters 14
Start page 223
End page 235
Total pages 13
Publisher Edinburgh University Press
Place of Publication Edinburgh, Scotland
Keyword(s) Iraq
Islamic State
Summary With the deadly ISIS advance, the sudden rousing of Shia militias and the threat of Kurdish secession, Iraq faces a host of deep-seated and intractable problems. Together, these events raise a number of serious questions, not just for Iraq and its future but also for the broader Middle East, the United States and its Coalition partners and the international community. While these challenges and questions will drive much academic debate, political analysis and media discussion in the months and years ahead, they are not the central purpose of this chapter. While there is always a risk in commenting on unfolding events, including the potential to overstate their significance and likely long-term impact, it is difficult to ignore the significance of the deadly ISIS advance and all that has happened since. This chapter argues that key to understanding these events is coming to terms with the three varied and complex legacies of the 2003 Iraq War. The first central legacy of the Iraq War is the ongoing consequences of several critical mistakes made by the US-led Coalition before, during and immediately after the 2003 intervention. The second legacy addressed here is the fact that the 2003 war shattered – perhaps irreversibly - Iraqis fragile cultural mosaic and its rich and complex history of overlapping and intersecting communities, ideologies and narratives. The third and final legacy of the 2003 Iraq War detailed in this chapter is its significant regional and global consequences – from spiralling sectarianism across the Middle East to a profound challenge to America’s status as the last remaining superpower and its use of military power for ‘humanitarian’ ends. The argument here is that these three important legacies set in train a sequence of events that have served as the collective catalyst for the expansion of the ‘Islamic State’ from mid-2014.
ISBN 9780748696161
Language eng
Field of Research 160602 Citizenship
160604 Defence Studies
Socio Economic Objective 940201 Civics and Citizenship
HERDC Research category B1 Book chapter
Copyright notice ©2015, Edinburgh University Press
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