The Battle against Islamic State

It was an awkward coalition riven by political and sectarian differences, facing an elusive, fanatical enemy dug into an urban maze of narrow streets and alleyways. So, could Iraq’s government really deliver on its vow to vanquish Islamic State? In the end, the army, Shi‘ite Muslim paramilitaries and Kurdish Peshmerga fighters mustered rare unity to […]

Reuters reports:

It was an awkward coalition riven by political and sectarian differences, facing an elusive, fanatical enemy dug into an urban maze of narrow streets and alleyways. So, could Iraq’s government really deliver on its vow to vanquish Islamic State?

In the end, the army, Shi‘ite Muslim paramilitaries and Kurdish Peshmerga fighters mustered rare unity to end Islamic State’s reign of terror in Iraq’s second city Mosul, seat of the ultra-hardline Sunni insurgents’ “caliphate”.

But even with supportive U.S. air strikes, Baghdad’s triumph came at a devastating cost for the once-vibrant, multicultural city in northern Iraq and the surrounding region.