Mosul is Iraq’s second largest city, and in 2014 ISIS militants took the city as Iraqi army units fled. Now, a large scale military operation backed by the United States is underway to regain control of the city, which is situated in Northern Iraq.
The fight to re-take Mosul will likely create hundreds of thousands of displaced people. It may also have profound domestic and regional political implications, says my guest today Kirk Sowell, publisher of the Inside Iraqi Politics newsletter. He argues in a recent piece published by the Carnegie Endowment that the operation to retake mosul is part of a broader power struggle between Turkey and Iraq. The conversation you are about to hear explains the political and diplomatic context in which this battle is taking place.
If you believe, as Clausewitz said, that “war is the continuation of politics by other means” than it behooves all of us to understanding better the kind of regional, sectarian and even parliamentary politics at play in the battle for Mosul. If you have 20 minutes and want to learn more about the broader political context of this fight, have a listen.