Has ISIS taken all of Anbar?

ISIS is on the advance. It took the city of Ramadi a few days ago, which was the Iraq government’s last stronghold in Anbar province. There had been a government counterattack under a blitz of six US airstrikes. With a supreme effort the Iraq forces regained full control of Al-Mukhabarat neighborhood in Ramadi, which is the capital city of Al-Anbar Governorate, meanwhile SWAT troops regained 75 percent of Al-Malab area. Those small successes were two days ago. ISIS counterattacked yesterday and Iraq government forces held out until they finally started to run out of ammunition, then they fled. As of today the entire province is now under ISIS control. More to the point, the Anglo-American policy of airstrike after airstrike is so often only serving to create refugees. It is not truly turning the tide against ISIS in Sunni areas; though it does clearly help draw a line in the sand by mere overwhelming bombardment when it comes to protecting cities like Baghdad and Kirkuk, So airstrikes can help turn the tide, but they must be used more judicially than at present. The US and its allies are now directly arming those few Sunni tribes that are loyal, and indeed starting to arm the Kurdistan Regional Government, by-passing Iraq’s central government (though it is far too little too late). But the USA simply fails to understand that defeating ISIS actually requires political strategies alongside the military action it is so fond of, key amongst which are reigning in Turkey as well as forcing the removal of Iraq’s deBaathification laws. Something the USA hasn’t the bottle to do.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s