Media attention of the crimes of ISIS have focused on attacks against Iraq’s Yazidi minority group. But another minority group, the Turkmen, also suffered terrible violence, and only now, slowly, is the embattled community piecing together its own story.
On Thursday, U.S. warplanes struck targets in the Abu Kamal region of Syria, a zone on the country’s eastern border that is heavily used by Iranian-backed Shiite militias to smuggle weapons, exert strategic control, and carry out attacks against various foes in Syria, including the Islamic State. The airstrikes weren't as insignificant as critics say.
The murky militia that took responsibility for last month's attack in Iraq issued a statement claiming that it “only targets the American, Turkish, and Israeli occupation bases.” Though many armed groups and others in the country have demanded an end to the “American-Israeli occupation,” the addition of “Turkish” is significant.
Despite the differences between Saddam and Soleimani, the commonalities were striking. Both men had caused enormous suffering. Both were defiant, and simply too large to die. Yet both were shown to be vincible.
The height of Iran’s influence — at least as presently expressed through the IRGC — has probably passed. Whether we’ve entered a period of stasis or decline is as yet unclear, but the latter seems more probable.
He was not a jihadist, although he’d been called one when convenient. When he joined “the Kurds,” he automatically became a “fighter for women’s empowerment and the rights of the dispossessed Kurds.” He was neither. And neither are so many other Syrian Arabs from the eastern part of the country.
It took five hours to watch the 101-minute Netflix film on Mosul and process the emotions that resulted from the realistic portrayal of brutal warfare in my hometown.