Liberation of Mosul: What’s Next?

With the fall of Mosul – the ISIS bastion, a gloomy page in the life of its residents, who spent 1,125 days under the yoke of jihadists, was turned over. Left behind were great human sacrifices and material losses. According to unofficial data, more than 60 mosques and churches, 300 schools, 212 factories, workshops and many social facilities in the ancient city were destroyed.

The following topic is prevailing in the Iraqi media: How to get the country quickly out of the current situation. The situation dictates that the military victory over the ISIS be brought to an end (there are still zones in Telafare, al Ḩuwayjah and in the west of Ar-Ramadi under ISIS influence), so that ISIS is destroyed both ideologically and politically.

The authors demand official data on the real number of ISIS members from the authorities, the publication of the list of people who were involved in supplying them with weapons, delivering them to Iraq, assisting in the theft and resale of oil in the areas of ISIS temporary occupation, etc.

The usual routine measures, as the Iraqi newspaper Al-Furat al-Yaum states, are insufficient. Careful struggle against ISIS legacy and the separation of bandits stuck in crime from those who were tempted and dragged into the organization and became a victim of the circumstances, are in demand.

Through all of the purges, the marginalization of representatives of other national, religious or ethnic groups, or their exclusion from government bodies cannot be allowed.

The leitmotif of many political scientists is that in order to raise up cities from ruins, breathe new life into them, all forces must act in a coordinated way.

Expert on the fight against terrorism in Iraq Hashim Al-Hashmi reiterated that for the first time ever, all the power components in Iraq were united in the fight against the common threat: army, police, people’s militia, the Peshmerga and tribal groups.

Such consolidation will remain in demand for the establishment of order in Iraq, the restoration of the destroyed, returning refugees to their homes, and the normalization of life in regions affected by ISIS.

Although the decline of ISIS is already on the horizon, destroying the roots of this institution, which grew and parasitized on the basis of the deep crisis in the Iraqi society over recent decades and against the backdrop of dramatic events in neighboring Syria, is difficult. Interethnic, sectarian, regional and other contradictions were all bundled here. The country was torn apart by internal disagreement, along with external interference.

In fact, the USA had lost its military control over Iraq. This created conditions for the involvement of different parties and forces from neighboring countries in the Iraqi crisis. They act under the banner of counteracting international terrorism. However, they often solve the tasks of the ruling regimes in their struggle for leadership in the region after the “Arab Spring”, which might lead to a partitioning of the Iraqis among “ethnic and national apartments.”

Iraq “would be faced with new challenges in the political sphere because of external interference in the internal affairs of the region,” said Iraqi Vice-President Nouri Al-Maliki at meetings with Russian authorities during his working visit to Russia from July 23 to 26, 2017.

Relations between Russia and Iraq have a long history going back to the 60s of last century. The legacy of this cooperation is related to a hundred large industrial and other important facilities created on the grounds of Ancient Mesopotamia. First of all, this includes the oil and gas industry, energy, military and defense sectors. These sectors constitute the base of the national development, life support system for the population, showed their effectiveness and contributed to the survival of the country, especially during wars and conflicts.

Today, Baghdad enjoys Moscow’s solidarity with the efforts of the Iraqis to eradicate the terrorist threat in the region. At meetings with Russian officials, Nouri Al-Maliki also said that Iraq was on the verge of a new stage of development, and was interested in maintaining political balance in the country. According to the Vice-President of the republic, such balance can be maintained through cooperation with Russia “in the political sphere”, in the energy sector, and in the military and technical sphere.

By Yury Zinin
Source: New Eastern Outlook

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