Syria’s Spillover, Iraq’s Nightmare

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The ongoing civil war in Syria has spread across the Iraqi border in recent months, putting Iraq back at the center of the region’s security agenda. As the forces of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) take control over a large part of Iraq, the Kurdish population has become increasingly assertive in the pursuit of its own autonomy, and Iraq has once again become a policy challenge for Washington. This report examines the implications of the growing conflict for Iraq, the U.S., Syria and a potentially independent Kurdistan, drawing on articles published in the past year.

ISIS in Iraq

Obama Faces Daunting Choices on Iraq
By Frida Ghitis
June 19, 2014

In Iraq, Americans Must Confront Complexities, not Cliches
By Heather Hurlburt
June 16, 2014

For U.S., a Window of Opportunity to Salvage Interests in Iraq
By Steven Metz
June 18, 2014

Iraq’s Turmoil Highlights Extent and Limits of Iran’s Influence
By Alireza Nader
Jan. 27, 2014

What Lessons Will the U.S. Military Learn From Iraq’s Collapse?
By Steven Metz
June 25, 2014

Iraq’s Refugee Situation Shows Signs of History Repeating
By David Romano
June 27, 2014

Iraq’s Prisons Incubate Islamist Ideology
By Myriam Benraad
July 29, 2014

Iraq’s Renewed Violence Exacerbates Sectarian Mistrust
By Catherine Cheney
Oct. 25, 2013

With Elections Nearing, Iraq’s Maliki Confronts His Shiite Challengers
By Hannes Cerny
June 24, 2014

The Kurdish Perspective

As ISIS Chaos Grows, Iraqi Kurds Must Not Overplay Their Hand
By Hannes Cerny
June 24, 2014

In Northeastern Syria, Kurds Hold Off Islamist Rebels—For Now
By Balint Szlanko
Sept. 30, 2013

With Backing From Damascus, PYD Has Free Hand to Repress Syria’s Kurds
By Eve Savelsberg
Aug. 23, 2013

Syrian War Stirs Up Kurdish Anxiety in Turkey and Iraq
By Frida Ghitis
Aug. 15, 2013

Irbil Would Benefit From Normalized Relations With Baghdad
By Catherine Cheney
June 18, 2013

Iraqi Kurdistan Elections Cement Barzani’s Role as Regional Powerbroker
By Hannes Cerny
Sept. 30, 2013

In Chaos of Syria Conflict, Kurds’ Autonomy Rests on Shaky Ground
By Michael M. Gunter
Feb. 3, 2013

Erdogan’s Kurdish Electoral Gamble Will Reverberate in Turkey and Iraq
By Hannes Cerny
April 3, 2014

In Iraq, Turkey Seeks to Mend Ties With Baghdad Without Alienating Kurds
By Yigal Schleifer
Nov. 11, 2013

Turkish Protests, Syria Crisis Will Boost Turkey-PKK Peace Process
By Bayram Balci
July 29, 2013

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