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At the eastern reaches of the Islamic community from the late eighth through eleventh century, Iraq was the political, intellectual, and economic center, and capital of the ʿAbbāsid dynasty of caliphs. Their era witnessed the flowering of Islam as a religion of jurisprudence, and the beginnings of Islamic philosophy and science, inspired by the spiritual heritages of the communities of Christians, Jews, and other religions of Mesopotamia. By the beginning of the second millennium, a recognizably Islamic urban culture and network of economic and political relationships had begun to emerge in Baghdad, reflecting the patterns established in other Muslim regions.

In the eleventh century, the political and economic significance of central and southern Iraq began to wane with the arrival of Persian and then Turkic warrior groups who gradually displaced the Arab Muslim ʿAbbāsids, then moved the locus of political rule away from Iraq. The twelfth-century European Crusades in the western Muslim lands and the onslaught of the Mongols from the east in the thirteenth century led to the political, economic and intellectual eclipse of “the land of the two rivers” (Mesopotamia).

Ruled by Mongol dynasties or Turkic tribal chiefdoms from the thirteenth through the fifteenth centuries, the lands around the Tigris and Euphrates river valley began in the sixteenth century to take on the territorial, political, and sectarian characteristics of modern Iraq. Absorbed gradually into the Ottoman empire during its successive campaigns against Ṣafavid Persia in the first half of the sixteenth century, Iraq presented challenges to its overlords in Istanbul. These challenges continued to hamper efforts by subsequent powers to impose nation-state unity or external control.


As the Arab, Mongol, Turkic, and Persian invasions illustrate, Iraq has frequently been the geopolitical and sectarian boundary between competing states and empires. A small strip of coastline at the head of the Persian Gulf extends inland along the Shatt al-Arab (the confluence of the Tigris and Euphrates), to Basra, the main city of the south. Dense palm groves and agricultural fields give way to marshes and small villages as the Tigris and Euphrates diverge eastwardly and westwardly, respectively. On a broad plain trailing off into hills and leading to Iran in the east, the Tigris flows through al-ʿAmārah and al-Kūt, halfway to Baghdad. The Euphrates route to Baghdad is more populated, with rice, barley, and date cultivation supporting towns and cities such as al-Nāsirīyah, al-Samāwah, al-Dīwānīyah, and al-Ḥillah. The Shīʿī shrine cities of Najaf and Karbala lie on the edges of the western deserts.

From Baghdad—built by the ʿAbbāsids in the 760s—the Tigris flows northwest to Mosul. Along its course towns such as Samarra, al-Dujayl, and Tikrīt are sporadically watered and irregularly flooded. Northeast of Baghdad, tributaries of the Tigris traverse the Diyala region, thus enabling towns such as Baʿqūbah and Muqdādīyah to survive on vegetable and cereal cultivation, until mountainous terrain reaches north and east to Kurdistan and Iran, creating natural economic and political barriers.

Westward from Baghdad, the Euphrates is dotted with small to medium-sized towns, including al-Fallūjah, al-Ramādī, al-Hadīthah, and ʿAna. Agricultural potential is poor, however, and caravan and smuggling routes towards al-Ruṭbah and al-Qāʿim-Ḥusaybah provide income for a sparser population near the Syrian border. The al-Jazīrah steppes between the upper reaches of the Tigris and the Euphrates provide limited grazing lands.

The Iraqi population is thus quite variable in density, and Iraq's abundant resources are distributed unevenly. Oil, for example, is located mostly in the southern Basra–al-ʿAmārah–al-Kūt–al-Samāwah region, and north of Samarra, in the Mosul-Kirkuk–al-Sulaymānīyah area of Kurdistan. During the Ottoman years, no “Iraq” per se. Instead, Ottoman administrators, recognizing the distinctiveness of the regions of Iraq divided the territory into three provinces, centered on Mosul, Baghdad, and Basra, respectively. Iraq as a geopolitical unity was a creation of British imperial mapdrawing after World War I.

Social Organizations.

As with geography, Iraq's demography exhibits multiple categories of fault lines. The first of these is ethnic. Iraqi Arabs make up about 75 percent of the country's roughly 27 million people (2007 estimate). Kurds constitute roughly 20 percent of the population, but their two distinct dialect communities, the Sorani in southern and southeastern Kurdistan and the Kirmanji-speaking Iraqi Kurds in the northern, more mountainous regions have historically not been united politically. The Turkoman (Türkmen) minority, though not more than three percent of the population, has historically lived in strategically important areas, such as Kirkuk and near Mosul and Tall ʿAfar, and has remained the concern of their ethnic cousins to the northwest in Turkey.

The second major boundary is sectarian. There are small communities of Assyrian, Chaldean, and Armenian Christians, as well as Jews (until the 1950s), primarily in the three largest cities, Baghdad, Basra, and Mosul. Much more significant, however, has been the sectarian division within the Muslim community between Sunnī and Shīʿī. As a result of the five-hundred-year Sunnī Ottoman overlordship, the Arab Sunnī community in Iraq has traditionally dominated the political and economic realms. Yet the Arab Sunnī community comprises only about 18 percent of the population, while the Shīʿī community—mostly Arab, with the exception of about a million (Fayli) Kurds—comprises nearly 65% of Iraq's population. Just as Sunnī Arabs and Sunnī Kurds have rarely made common cause, so the Shīʿī communities have been internally divided by ideology, particularly since the late twentieth century.

In this regard, the social organization of Shīʿī religious authority and learning in Iraq among is significant. The eighteenth-century victory of Shīʿī thinkers who claimed that scholars are authorized to interpret Islam during the occultation of the Twelfth Imām gave rise to a clerical hierarchy at the base of which were seminary students and at the top of which was a small circle of senior mujtahids (scholars), the ayatollahs. Those senior scholars who were marājiʿ al-taqlīd (authorities to be emulated; sing. marjaʿ al-taqlīd) lived in Iraq's main Shīʿī shrine- and seminary-cities, Najaf, Karbala, and to a lesser extent, Kāẓimīyah. Iraq, not Iran, is the geographic center of Shīʿī Islam. Through a consensus of the marājiʿ al-taqlīd, the most senior Shīʿī cleric of a generation in terms of scholarship and age is accorded the title of Grand Ayatollah, or Marjaʿ al-Muṭlaq (literally, absolute authority).

This institution of clerical scholarly and communal leadership, known as the Marjaʿīyah, has often been politically quietist, though at critical times its leaders have emerged to lead the community politically, as in 1920 when they raised the banner of jihād against the British invaders. While the failure of that effort led the Grand Ayatollahs to return to political quietism and focus on scholarship and piety, the model of an activist Marjaʿīyah was preserved in Shīʿī memory, gaining prominence again in the 1980s and later, setting the stage for Shīʿī community politics after the U.S.-British invasion of 2003. Beyond this, the network of seminary students and mujtahids spread its influence throughout the Iraqi Shīʿite community, while also allowing for a certain amount of influence on Iraqi Shiism by external forces, especially Iran.

Sunnī Islam in Iraq does not have an analogous hierarchy that can act as a source of unified mobilization or ideological consensus. Sunnī Arab states, Sunnī scholars have been relatively independent of each other, and under each regime, including that of Saddam Hussein after 1991, Sunnī functionaries have been employed by the state and thus been subject to its control.

It is possible to speak of a Kurdish north, a Shīʿite south and east, and a Sunnī Arab center and west, but the alignment of ethnic, sectarian, and geographic boundaries is only partial. The population of the major cities has long been mixed: Basra has a large Arab Sunnī minority, while Baghdad, particularly from the 1960s, has had a Shīʿī majority concentrated in its eastern, economically depressed precincts, while in Kurdistan, Mosul has long had an Arab majority with a sizeable Kurdish community on its east bank. Additionally, state repression and the post-1968 regime's Arabization policies altered the demography of Kirkuk increasingly in favor of Arabs—both Sunnī and transplanted Shīʿī—and Kurdish authorities have taken steps since the 2003 U.S.-British invasion to move Arabs out and “restore” Kirkuk's Kurdishness. Long-term historical characteristics, twentieth-century regime policies, and the unintended consequences of recent events thus make it impossible to draw more than broad demographic and geographic parallels. These broad contours, however, and the replication of ethnic and sectarian divides in key urban areas have rendered ethnic cleansing a tactic of protagonists to conflict in Iraq's current communal wars.

Two other enduring boundaries have become more significant since the invasion of Iraq in 2003. As in other Middle Eastern countries, there is a sharp division between city and countryside. Before the 1980–1988 Iran–Iraq War, greater access to state services, health care, and education, as well as the mixing of people of different ethnic, regional, and sectarian backgrounds, had produced in Iraq's major cities a diverse urban environment with a more open intellectual and social outlook than that of rural areas. In these urban centers, economic, marriage, and other connections often crossed ethnic or sectarian lines. From the mid-1980s and especially after the imposition of international economic sanctions after the 1990–1991 Gulf War, however, rural-to-urban migration, economic privation, and state policies of repression on ethnic and sectarian grounds combined to create potentially explosive confrontations in the crowded cities.

Another division of greater importance since the 1990–1991 war has been the one between expatriates and Iraqis who have remained in Iraq. Whether as Kurdish nationalists, anti-Saddam Baʿthists, democrats, or Shīʿī Islamists, the experiences and alliances of the expatriates have differed significantly from those of Iraqis inside the country. This divergence in experience, knowledge, and outlook has not only created rivalries among Iraqi aspirants to power since 2003 but has greatly complicated American and British plans and calculations in Iraq, just as it did for British imperial administrators in the 1920s and 30s.


Tribalism has created another sort of division in Iraqi society. As in neighboring Syria, Jordan, and the Arabian peninsula, kin networks have been vital to social authority, economic and political survival, and alliance formation. Tribal membership routinely crosses provincial, national, and even sectarian lines, and tribes are present in both the Arab and Kurdish regions of the country. Tribes also subdivide otherwise homogeneous groups. This is especially obvious in Iraq's al-Anbar province which is overwhelmingly Arab and Sunnī but riven with tribal differences.

Based on often fictive common lineages, loyalty to kin and tribe frequently supersede allegiance to political or even religious authority. Yet, tribes and tribalism in Iraq have had an uneven history. Though the Ottoman administration viewed tribal leaders as sources of authority and control in the rural periphery, nineteenth-century efforts to modernize the bureaucracy, rationalize land-ownership, and settle populations for the purposes of taxation and conscription weakened the moral and political connections between tribes and their leaders. In Shīʿī regions, this process was accompanied by the settlement and conversion to nominal Shiism of tribal members, who now had new centers of moral authority in the Shīʿī shrine cities of Najaf and Karbala.

When the British arrived in Mesopotamia, however, they viewed tribal shaykhs in idealized Orientalist terms and thus embraced them as local contacts—strengthening some while alienating them further from tribal members. The nascent Hashemite monarchy had its own interests. King Faysal bin Hussein had led the Arab Revolt (1916–1918) and established a monarchy in Damascus, only to be ejected by the French and relocated to Baghdad by the British. He was surrounded by Ottoman Arab military officers and administrators. They sought to centralize political authority and were by education and geographic origin distinct from Iraq's tribes and tribal leaders, whose support they sought through sinecures and payments but whose authority they nonetheless sought to curtail.

From the 1930s through the 1960s, a series of military coups and the “revolutions” of 1958 and 1963 produced regimes that viewed tribal loyalties—and any alternative centers of social power or identity—as inimical to the ideological state-making program of the day, be it Iraqi republican patriotism, secular pan-Arab nationalism, or the post-1968 Baʿthist state's autocratic regime-centered agenda. Tribal power politics and alliance-making persisted in Baghdad. In a “tribalism without tribes,” would-be coup makers of the 1950s, as well as the regimes of ʿAbd al-Karīm Qāsim and of ʿAbd al-Salām ʿĀrif and his brother ʿAbd al-Raḥmān ʿĀrif in the 1960s, created networks among military officers based on family connections, geographic origin, or similarity of military career.

In the same fashion, though taking full advantage of alliances in their particular subclan of the Āl Bū Nāṣir tribe in Tikrīt, Saddam Hussein and his kin in the post-1968 regime worked to eliminate tribalism and its structures of authority. Rural-to-urban migration assisted this process, though migrants to cities preserved their sense of membership in tribes and (in some cases) social help networks based on previous rural tribal connections. In the aftermath of the 1990–1991 war, in order to shore up support for a regime which had faced armed revolts in both the Shīʿī south and Kurdish north, the Baʿthist regime took full advantage of this residual tribalism to relegitimize tribes and tribal leaders as sources of authority in society, with Saddam Hussein at the pinnacle of tribal authority.

By redistributing power and largesse both among and within tribes—to include in the Shīʿī regions and Kurdish north—Saddam gave a new life to kin networks in Iraq. By doing it in a way that supported regime interests and not according to social dynamics, however, he created a “tribal system” that produced shaykhs at all levels without the traditional social backing, sense of responsibility, or position of authority independent of the state. Thus while tribalism was restored, it was in this disfigured form, which British and U.S. commanders encountered in 2003. Both the tentative tribal engagement as well as intermittent avoidance of tribal modes of politics, economics, and security on the part of coalition forces in the past years have worked to resuscitate tribes. Since 2003 tribes have become a focus of political mobilization, crime, internecine conflict, communal warfare, and anticoalition and antiregime insurgency of late, particularly in regions where kin leaders have tired of the violent activities of foreign al-Qa‘ida-inspired terror, tribes have assisted in the organization of police forces and militias in temporary support of foreign military forces.

The Saddam Regime.

Saddam Hussein entered the Baʿth party in 1958, as an enforcer. After participating in the failed 1959 assassination attempt against Iraqi President General ʿAbd al-Karīm Qāsim, he fled to Cairo but returned in 1963, when ʿAbd al-Salām ʿĀrif used Baʿthist cadres to secure his rule against Qāsim and the Iraqi Communist Party. After being shunted aside, the Baʿth Party launched a successful coup against ʿĀrif's brother and successor in 1968, in cooperation with dissident army officers inspired by Aḥmad Ḥasan al-Bakr, Saddam's Tikrītī kinsman. Over the next decade, while al-Bakr was president, Saddam used his increasing control of the party apparatus and intelligence organizations first to weaken the army and then to turn it and other coercive instruments against his rivals in the party, the government bureaucracy, and his own extended family. In 1979 al-Bakr announced his retirement, instigated by Saddam, who took over as president while consigning al-Bakr to house arrest. A violent purge of remaining opposition within the Baʿth followed; party members were led away on national television to their execution.

In broad terms, Saddam's political technology was based on a particularly capricious and demonstrative brutality that anesthetized the population against political and social mobilization. A political scene animated by brutality and the threat of it was replicated at every level of society as a means of survival in an environment devoid of trust, creating what has been referred to as a “republic of fear” and “psychological demolition.” At the same time, post-1973 oil windfalls made possible a rhetoric of socialism and state welfare, supported by increased spending on infrastructure and social services for favored constituencies. Likewise, while abandoning pan-Arab unity, the state ideology emphasized a homogenizing Iraqi state patriotism as well as Iraqi leadership of the Arab world and defense of it from what it considered the Persian schismatics to the east.

This was insufficient, however, to bind certain sectors of society to the regime. In particular, the Kurdish North, which had proven restive in the 1930s, 1950s, and 1960s, was again the site of unrest from the 1970s to the 1990s, with intermittent rebellion accompanied by the fragmentation of the Kurdish opposition under the Barzani family's Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) and the breakaway Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), established by Jalal Talabani in 1976. This lack of unity would plague the Iraqi Kurdish movement up to 2003, leading at times nearly to civil war in the North.

Likewise, from the late 1970s into the 1980s, the Baʿth regime faced growing opposition from Shīʿah who had abandoned pious quietism for more active political engagement against the secular regime, which had worked from the first to reduce the social influence and communal power of the Marjaʿīyah. Shīʿī opposition appeared more threatening in the shadow of the 1979 Iranian Islamic Revolution.

Saddam's response to this threat was both domestic and external. Domestically, he increased the ferocity of his repression of the Shīʿī community, to the point of murdering leading mujtahids. Additionally, the Baʿthist regime deported large numbers of Shīʿī citizens, whose allegedly “Persian” roots rendered them insufficiently Iraqi. Internationally, Saddam turned the Iranian threat into an opportunity to establish regional hegemony at the expense of a previously dominant Iran. In September 1980 Saddam launched his Operation Qādisīyah against the new Iranian regime.

The Iran–Iraq War.

Though the 1980–1988 Iran–Iraq War brought Iraq no military success, it had many significant consequences. Resulting in at least a million Iraqi and Iranian casualties, the war imprinted on a generation of Iraqis and Iranians a memory of armed conflict as a constant routine of social and political life. The financial and human toll blunted the revolutionary élan of the Iranian republic, slowed economic development for two decades, and led to diminished efforts to provoke an international Shīʿī Islamist revolution.

The Iraqi regime had pursued a guns-and-butter policy. By 1988 the army had grown to such an unwieldy size that it had become a strikingly inefficient field force—though bristling with Soviet, French, and German weapons—and, with the rest of the state sector, had become the leading employer in Iraq. Its burgeoning military meant that the Iraqi government carried extensive debt with foreign states, especially in the Arab Gulf. At the same time, oil prices in the late 1980s inhibited the use of Iraqi oil to finance recovery, partly because major oil exporters such as Saudi Arabia and Kuwait were producing oil at or above their OPEC quotas in order to ensure the global supply of oil. These same countries were Iraq's foreign creditors in the Arab world and were pressing for repayment of debt. For that reason, the Iraqi regime felt that it was not being accorded its due for fighting what it portrayed as a defensive war against a Persian Shīʿī onslaught into the Arab Sunnī world.

On the positive side, war with the Islamic Republic of Iran increased Iraq's standing in inter-Arab affairs and among international powers also at loggerheads with Iran. These included the U.S. and the U.S.S.R., both of which improved their political, economic, and military relations with Baghdad. The improvement in the official Iraqi image was accompanied by the delegitimization of internal Iraqi opposition, particularly that of the Kurds and Shīʿī Islamists. This permitted the Iraqi regime to take unprecedented measures against the opposition, particularly in Kurdistan. In 1988, the Iraqi military undertook a purportedly defensive campaign known as Anfāl, which sought to ethnically cleanse and depopulate as much of Kurdistan as possible. Several towns were attacked with chemical weapons, including Ḥalabja (5,000 deaths) and Bazi Gorge (3,000 deaths) and an estimated 200,000 Kurds were killed, and thousands were displaced in Iraqi air and ground assaults.

The Iraqi regime's increased self-confidence, its apparent eradication of both Shīʿī and Kurdish opposition, its presumption of a debt of gratitude towards it by other Arab countries, improved relations with the West, and a large, combat-experienced army lying idle led Saddam to a serious miscalculation in the summer of 1990. Accusing Kuwait of over-pumping from the shared Rumaila oil field and of conspiring with other OPEC countries to hold down the price of oil, Saddam demanded that Kuwait write off its $14 billion Iraqi debt. When an emergency Arab summit conference failed to resolve the crisis, Iraq invaded Kuwait on August 1, 1990.

The invasion of Kuwait was a fatal misstep for the Baʿthist regime; it undid in six months what the late 1970s and the Iran–Iraq War had helped Saddam to accomplish. First, his military was destroyed in Kuwait and on the roads back to Baghdad. Second, the holding of Westerners hostage in Baghdad and threats to use chemical and even nuclear weapons against the multinational forces increased Western awareness of the Iraqi regime's record of genocide against Kurds and cast him as an international terrorist.

Third, as Saddam's forces retreated into Iraq in disorder, armed popular uprisings began in the Shīʿī South and the Kurdish North. The “Shaʿbān Intifāḍah” began in Basra on March 1, 1991, and within a few days that city and al-Nāsirīyah, al-ʿAmārah, al-Kūt, al-Ḥillah, al-Dīwānīyah, Najaf, and Karbala were completely out of government control. In the North, within the next two weeks Sulaymānīyah, Arbīl, and Kirkuk fell to Kurdish rebels. In both regions the ferocity of violence against Baʿthist installations suggested the revulsion of the Shīʿah and Kurds towards the regime and the degraded state of Iraqi political culture, which would become significant in the years after the removal of the Baʿthist regime in 2003. Saddam's forces were eventually able to regroup and reassert control in these regions, due partly to American, Turkish, and Arab suspicions that the uprising was Khomeinist in character and would result in a Kurdish state in the North and a Shīʿī transnational revolution in the South.

Fourth, while the U.S. had seemed to call for the uprisings, the barbarity of the regime's response to them and the lack of American intervention in support of the rebels, particularly in the Shīʿī South, evoked a lasting mistrust among Iraqi opposition groups of U.S. motives. This mistrust would complicate relations between the Iraqi—especially Shīʿī—opposition and the U.S. throughout the 1990s, greatly mute the Shīʿī South's welcome for coalition forces in 2003, and allow a sympathetic reception to younger, more aggressive Shīʿī leaders from 2003, who would paint the U.S. as anti-Shīʿī and anti-Islamic.

Fifth, after Saddam's occupation of Kuwait, the United Nations imposed economic sanctions on Iraq. Though meant to hobble the regime, they were manipulated by the Baʿthist government to harm the Iraqi people, thus giving the Baghdad regime a propaganda victory that grew as the suffering of common Iraqis increased. As a result of the sanctions, there was a decline in incomes, medical care, nutrition, education, and literacy levels. The structures of the state also began to atrophy because there had never been a recovery from the destruction of 1990–1991 and all resources were marshaled for the survival of the regime. The UN oil-for-food program, established in 1996 to improve conditions for normal Iraqis while restricting the flow of funds for Iraqi military or coercive purposes, achieved neither goal.

As a result of these sanctions and the cumulative effects of the 1980–1988 and 1990–1991 wars and the unmasked repression of the regime, the secular professional middle class which had emerged in the late 1970s and early 1980s receded from view. These and other social groups consequently fell back on reified primordial associations of family, tribe, and confessional group. Widespread corruption and a rampant transnational black market emerged as means of survival and as social norms by the late 1990s and continued into the post-Saddam era, confounding Western reconstruction efforts and supporting the burgeoning insurgency from 2004.

Iraqi politics after 1991 were characterized by Saddam's reliance on his closest relatives and a few trusted subordinates complicit in the crimes of the regime since the 1970s. He also supported tribal shaykhs who showed complete loyalty to him, while continuing to purge the military and civilian bureaucracy of anyone who might oppose the regime. In so doing, the Baʿthist regime earned the deep-seated resentment of major tribal groups in mixed and all-Sunnī regions of Iraq, many of whose prominent members were killed or imprisoned. This detail was not fully comprehended by invading coalition forces in 2003, who failed to see the opportunities this presented, or to grasp that the regime's coping strategy had been to administer restive areas—such as Ramādī and al- Fallūjah—less and less. The result was an increased level of autonomy for Iraqis in the provinces who turned to tribal rather than governmental authority for leadership.

Ideology and Organizations in the Iraqi Opposition of the 1990s.

A further effect of the 1990–1991 Gulf War was increasing opposition to Saddam Hussein. By the late 1980s, groups opposed to the Baʿthist regime were in exile in Syria, Europe, and Iran, and suffered from organizational disarray and internal divisions. Saddam's invasion of Kuwait, and in particular his suppression of the uprisings and his efforts to eradicate entire groups such as the Marsh Arabs, gained the Iraqi opposition a legitimacy in the U.S. and Europe which it had not previously enjoyed.

The Iraqi opposition during the 1990s consisted primarily of the secular nationalists, the Kurds, and the Shīʿī Islamists, all of whom continued active in Iraqi politics after the fall of Saddam. Represented by Ahmad Chalabi and his Iraqi National Congress, and ʿAyād ʿAllāwī and his Iraqi National Accord, the secular Iraqi nationalist segment is familiar with Western political structures and interest groups. Closely identified with the Iraqi opposition conferences of Vienna (1992), Ṣalāḥ al-Dīn (1992), and New York (1999), as well as with the U.S. Congress's Iraq Liberation Act (1998), these two groups helped to make the Iraqi opposition in the 1990s attractive to the U.S. government and public but possessed no constituency inside Iraq. Furthermore, the constant rivalry of members of this group—Chalabi and ʿAllāwī in particular—permitted various agencies of the U.S. government to use them as proxies in ongoing arguments about Iraq policies.

The Kurdish movement in the 1990s continued to be divided between the Tālibānī-led PUK and the Barzani-led KDP. Though the 1991 uprising was ultimately put down, the stream of Kurdish refugees into Iran and Turkey attracted sufficient Western attention to force the U.N. to establish a no-fly zone for Iraqi aircraft and a safe haven for the Kurds above the 36th parallel. By July 1991, the Iraqi government effectively ceded control of areas around and north of Sulaymānīyah, Arbīl, and Zākhō. In the ensuing years, KDP-controlled northern Kurdistan and the PUK-controlled South became de facto states, with their own administrations, parliaments, and diplomatic representatives to surrounding countries. Continued rivalry between the PUK and KDP, however, prevented unconditional support from the West, frustrated repeated efforts at a united pan-Iraqi opposition to Saddam, and at times led to intra-Kurdish fighting, affording the Baʿthist regime greater influence in the region.

The Shīʿī opposition is perhaps the most interesting, for its illustration of the evolution within the Iraqi Shīʿī community and the possibilities it suggests for Shīʿī activism in the wider Arab world. After the mujtahid-supported revolt against the British in 1920, the British worked to reduce the Marjaʿīyah's power. To preserve the integrity of the institutions of the Marjaʿīyah, Shīʿī leaders returned to quietism. In the 1950s, however, leading Iraqi mujtahids noted the attraction of Shīʿī youth to the Iraqi Communist Party, secular Arab nationalism, and emerging Sunnī ideologies. In order to forestall the younger generation's drift away from tradition and prevent erosion of the Marjaʿīyah's authority, a group of younger Shīʿī clerics in 1958 established the Daʿwah (Islamic Call) Party in Karbala, as an activist religious movement and political party. The senior Marjaʿ al-Taqlīd, Grand Ayatollah Muḥsin al-Ḥakīm, participated in early discussions about the Daʿwah, condoning the entry of younger Shīʿī clerics into social and political action by issuing a fatwā proscribing membership in secular political parties while authorizing membership in parties established to propagate Islam. This departed from the policies of the Marjaʿīyah during the previous three decades.

Ayatollah Muḥammad Bāqir al-Ṣadr emerged as an Iraqi Shīʿī leader in the 1960s and 1970s. Thoroughly versed in traditional Shīʿī scholarship, he also wrote treatises contrasting Islamic jurisprudence, philosophy, and economics with capitalism, democracy, and communism, and showing these to be inferior to Islam. He was therefore able to address matters of concern to young Iraqi Shīʿī. He also signaled that his Marjaʿīyah, recognized by the early 1970s, would be socially engaged and, if necessary, opposed to the Baʿthist state.

The al-Ḥakīm and al-Ṣadr families were two of the most prestigious Arab Shīʿī families: both had pedigrees going back several centuries. The story of Iraqi Shīʿī activism became in effect the story of the al-Ṣadr and al-Ḥakīm families, who, while not always allied, were pitted in intellectual and dynastic rivalry against other families, the al-Khoʿi and al-Sīstānī in particular. Modern Shīʿī internal politics thus perpetuates the family dynamics of past centuries.

After the death of Muḥsin al-Ḥakīm in 1970, the quietist Sayyid Abol-Qāsem al-Khoʿi became the leader of the Marjaʿīyah in Iraq. His opposition to clerical activism permitted the Baʿthist regime to target Muḥammad Bāqir al-Ṣadr and his associates. In the late 1970s, thousands of Daʿwah members were imprisoned or killed by the Iraqi state. In 1980, al-ṣadr himself and his sister Bint al-Hudā were detained and then murdered by an Iraqi state reacting to al-Sadr's popularity and the threatening posture of the new Islamic regime to the east. Al-Khoʿi was criticized for not responding vocally to the regime's murder of al-Ṣadr, and in the aftermath of the fall of Saddam two decades later, the al-Ṣadr–al-Khoʿi rift would turn bloody. However, the quietism of Abol-Qāsem al-Khoʿi preserved the institution of the Marjaʿīyah in difficult times, when it might otherwise have been targeted by the Baʿthist regime. Likewise, his emphasis on scholarship and his rejection of Khomeini's ideology of wilayat al-faqīh (rule by the jurist) prevented the Iraqi Marjaʿīyah from becoming a creature of Iran.

In the 1980s, the Shīʿī Islamist movement emerged as a main opponent of the Baʿthist regime. It did so, however, divided between an external opposition and a latent but ultimately consequential internal movement. After Muḥsin al-Ḥakīm's death, the regime targeted his sons. One of them, Ayatollah Bāqir al-Ḥakīm, fled to Tehran, where he established the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq. Though initially established as an umbrella organization for all Iraqi Islamist parties, SCIRI appeared too closely associated with both the person of al-Hakīm and the agenda of its Iranian patrons. However, SCIRI developed a base of support among the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi refugees in Iran, as well as an armed militia—the Badr Corps—which would become useful in Iraq after 2003, though the taint of Iranian affiliation would remain. With the international legitimization of Iraqi opposition groups after 1990, SCIRI and al-Ḥakīm became key parts of the Iraqi opposition and began to reach out to the U.S.

Though SCIRI and Daʿwah were significant factors in the Iraqi opposition, the internal dynamics of the Iraqi Shīʿah during the 1990s were perhaps more significant to post-2003 mobilization. Here again, the al-Ṣadr family is important. After the 1991 Shīʿī uprising, mosques and madrasahs were shut down, and the seminaries in Najaf nearly ceased to function. In an effort to create a regime-dependent Marjaʿīyah, the government released Muḥammad Muḥammad Ṣādiq al-Ṣadr, who had been arrested in 1991. Having studied under Khomeini as well as Muḥsin al-Ḥakīm, he was already recognized as an accomplished mujtahid in his mid-thirties. When released, he was put forward by the regime as an “Arab” Marjaʿ al-Taqlīd, who would be an alternative to the Najaf-based disciple of Abol-Qāsem al-Khoʿi, Ayatollah ʿAlī al-Sīstānī, a native of Iran.

Ṣādiq al-Ṣadr was in no way the state's man, however, and in the ensuing decade his activist Marjaʿīyah sought to bypass the state as a factor in the Shīʿī religious community, while mobilizing the Shīʿī masses to reform the Marjaʿīyah itself in the direction of more social involvement. These initiatives exacerbated the existing rivalry between the line of al-Khoʿi and that of al-Ṣadr, while earning the wrath of the state. Though the state murdered Ṣādiq al-Ṣadr in 1999—thus enhancing the al-Ṣadr family's aura of martyrdom—he had already reenergized the post-1991 Shīʿī community of Iraq, particularly through his reinstitution of the public Friday congregational prayers, where he and his deputies delivered sermons to the faithful, in the local dialect.

The idea of a populist Marjaʿīyah was thus born, and though it was unable fundamentally to shake the al-Sīstānī's hold on the loyalty of Shīʿī Iraqis, it created a new model of Shīʿī clerical political outreach to the people, which the younger and much less erudite Muqtadā al-Ṣadr would use to great advantage beginning in 2003.

Notably, in the days after Ṣādiq al-Ṣadr's 1999 murder, thousands of Shīʿah rose in the Thawrah neighborhood of eastern Baghdad—renamed Madīnat al-Ṣadr (Ṣadr City) in memory of Ṣādiq al-Ṣadr in 2003—in spite of the certainty of a murderous state response. While Saddam's agents arrested thousands of al-Ṣadr's supporters over the next weeks, unrest in southern cities became so intense that the regime temporarily allowed towns like al-Nāsirīyah to slip out of its control. Though the regime soon returned in force, this attests to the motivational power of an activist Marjaʿīyah.

However, as with the secular nationalist and Kurdish opposition fronts, the Shīʿī opposition was sharply divided between the Daʿwah Party and the SCIRI, between these two groups and the internal Shīʿite opposition of the Ṣadr family, and between the internal activists of the al-Ṣadr school and the quietists of the al-Koʿi–al-Sīstānī school. After 2003, these rivalries would result in internecine strife leading at times to bloodshed and in differing attitudes to the coalition authorities.

The 2003 Iraq War and its Aftermath.

When the U.S.-led coalition arrived in Baghdad in April 2003, it had to contend with the claims of these contestants for political power—all in the context of widespread mutual distrust among Iraqis, and their retreat to segmented social groups, arising from profound differences in geography, ethnicity, and sect, from urban–rural and expatriate–indigenous divisions, and from various kin networks. Kurdish leaders, in Baghdad and in Kurdistan, have proven ambivalent about the preservation of Iraq as a unitary state, wishing to increase Kurdistan's hard-won autonomy politically while expanding it economically through the use of oil, much of which is located in Kurdistan. At the same time, Kurdish leaders have assiduously pursued influence in successive Iraqi governments, often as an implicit condition for foregoing Kurdish independence.

In their pursuit of power and influence at the center, the Kurds are joined by the majority Shīʿī community which for the first time sees the prospect of escape from political, social, and economic disenfranchisement. Whether in the slums of Baghdad, the Shīʿī city of Basra, or the seminary town of Najaf, many Shīʿah see Iraq exclusively as theirs, earned through the sacrifices of the masses and the martyrdom of Shīʿī leaders, at the head of which have been the al-Sadr and al-Hakīm families. Their memory of abandonment by the West in 1991 has led Shīʿī political leaders to be highly suspicious of American efforts at compromise.

For their part, the expatriate Iraqi politicians to whom the U.S. turned for analysis of Iraqi society—be they of the Chalabi–ʿAllawi type or old-time politicians like Adnan Pachachi—have been absent from Iraqi society for so long that they have failed to develop a sizeable constituency.

Long politically dominant, the Sunnī Arab minority became dispossessed and insecure after the fall of Saddam in 2003. The association of its leadership with the Baʿthist regime and the decimation of its highest echelons rendered it insecure, disorganized, and volatile, and it was profoundly distrusted by everyone else, particularly the Shīʿah, whose continuing calls for aggressive de-Baʿthification were the most threatening to Sunnī interests.

More than any other sector in society, Sunnī Arabs have relied on highly localized and fissiparous kin networks, and tribal leaders have found it difficult to exercise constructive power. Sunnī clerical groups that have emerged since 2003, such as the Association of Muslim Scholars in Iraq, have likewise found it difficult to exercise the kind of influence over Sunnīs that Shīʿī leaders have wielded over their community. While some Sunnī tribal leaders view the U.S. and coalition forces as the engineers of the Sunnī community's sociopolitical eclipse and thus support insurgent activity against the occupation, they have nonetheless come to consider U.S. forces at least a short-term barrier to Shīʿī domination and al-Qaʿida-inspired anarchy in their regions.

A shared characteristic of the Shīʿī, Kurdish, and Sunnī communities is their internal division, which makes it impossible to treat them in monolithic terms. The Shīʿī case is instructive. The release of Iraq from the autocratic grip of Saddam also freed the Shīʿī community from restraints on the internal rivalry among elites. In 2003, these rivalries turned violent. Sayyid ʿAbd al-Mājid al-Khoʿi, son of Grand Ayatollah Abol-Qāsem al-Khoʿi, had returned to Iraq as a supporter of the coalition, attempting to act as a bridge to ʿAli al-Sīstānī in Najaf. On April 10, he was murdered in Najaf, probably by al-Ṣadr partisans in retribution for his father's silence when Bāqir al-Ṣadr was assassinated by the regime. On August 29, 2003, Ayatollah Muḥammad Bāqir al-Ḥakīm himself was murdered at the Imām ʿAlī shrine in Najaf. Though probably not the work of Shīʿī competitors, this crime increased mistrust within the Shīʿī community and between it and other groups in Iraq.

The internal Shīʿī rift between the al-Ṣadr family and Grand Ayatollah ʿAlī al-Sīstānī has also remained active. Muqtadā al-Ṣadr has embraced the populist activism of his predecessors. With his youth and uncompromising defiance, he has been able to mobilize the excitement and disaffection of Shīʿī masses in Ṣadr City, southern Iraq, and elsewhere. He does, however, face a challenge that earlier al-Ṣadrs did not. Though charismatic, he has no scholarly credentials and cannot in traditional Shīʿī terms challenge the precedence of the Marjaʿ al-Taqlīd ʿAlī al-Sīstānī. This weakness has emerged several times since 2004. While he can mobilize large numbers of Shīʿah and has organized and inspired his Mahdī Army militia—though often exercising little control over it—he has frequently been forced by al-Sīstānī's public warnings to step back from irreversible confrontation with occupation troops. Therefore, in spite of a revolution in Shīʿī mobilization in Iraq over the past three decades, the traditional loyalty to a Marjaʿ al-Taqlīd based on age and scholarly accomplishment has thus far remained largely intact.

The U.S.-led occupation authorities have been unable to balance the nearly irreconcilable claims of the various elements of Iraqi society. Conversely, the coalition has never adequately pursued the alternative policy of exclusively embracing any one group, lending it sufficient support to impose its will on Iraq in a fashion congruent with the authoritarian and autocratic socio-political traditions of the region. Likewise, with too few military personnel and administrators in the country and increasingly shaky domestic support for continued presence in Iraq, The coalition has appeared at some times too aggressive and at others too timid and fleeting in the use of force to sustain postwar stabilization and reconstruction. The confidence of would-be allies of the occupation forces in Iraq has been eroded, just as their enemies have been emboldened. Chief among these is an element strikingly new to Iraq, the infiltration into the country of Sunnī global jihādist elements inspired by al-Qaʿida, who seek to increase sectarian tension and turn all Iraqis against the occupation forces. (The Baʿthist regime appears to have eschewed al-Qaiʿda-affiliated Islamists from the 1990s through 2003.) The ability of al-Qaʿida affiliates to obtain local recruits has also demonstrated that the Saddam regime's 1990s “Faith Campaign” of building Sunnī mosques and permitting increasingly conservative Islamic rhetoric by unmonitored clerics and lay leaders had the unintended consequence of creating an ideological milieu conducive to radical Sunnī Islamism of the Salafist type, previously alien to Iraq. Finally, the al-Qaiʿda-affiliated terrorists’ strategy of stirring up sectarian violence, embodied in the pronouncements of Abū Muṣʿab al-Zarqāwī (killed by occupation forces in 2006) and his successors, provide a worrying counterpoint to growing Shīʿī confidence and political activism, whether in Iraq, Lebanon, or Gulf countries with Shīʿī populations. It is this violence among religious, ethnic, and geographic groups that leads to an interpretation of the current conflict in Iraq as a civil or communal war, with forecasts ranging from ethnic cleansing and population redistribution to the territorial and political fragmentation of the Iraqi state.

Assessment: Iraq and the Islamic World.

Certain trends have proven characteristic of Iraqi society in the modern era. First, since the beginning of the twentieth century, the peoples of the “land of the two rivers” have been unable to unite for anything, but have only been temporarily united in sentiment against things. Second, all significant groups in Iraq have been continuously divided internally. Third, every administration of Iraq in the past century—from the British mandate, through the monarchy and successive republics, up to and including the current U.S.-stewarded government—has apportioned power and political-economic enfranchisement based on ethno-religious lines. Thus has the concept of communalism been enshrined as the principle of inclusion or exclusion in the Iraqi state, and citizens are encouraged to view each other with ethno-sectarian lenses. Fourth, and as a result of this principle, every leader of the Iraqi state, from Faysal in the 1920s up through Jalal Talabani, who was elected president by the Iraqi parliament in 2005, has suffered from insoluble legitimacy crises among significant sectors of society.

Fifth, foreign interlopers in Iraq, whether British imperialists or American administrators, have been driven more by imaginings about a future Iraq than by knowledge of the reality of Iraq as it is, and they have failed to demonstrate the kind of endurance that can accomplish the future-oriented aspirations that brought them to Iraq in the first place. Sixth, while Iran is often considered the vanguard of global Shiism, not only is Iraq the sacred heartland of the religion, but in the community and Marjaʿīyah's intellectual and organizational evolution over the past half-century, observers can locate the dynamism likely to inspire future trends in Shiism—just as Shiism in Iraq has thus far remained free of the stultifying embrace of the state, unlike in Iran. Seventh, a fundamental characteristic of modern Iraq has been brutal violence as both political performance and instrument of socio-political change, accompanied by rampant, cultivated distrust. Iraqis of all social groups have been objects of routinized violence, just as they have all too often proven witting or unwitting agents in that violence. External actors in Iraq have often failed to account for this reality and its psychological as well as cultural reverberations, and have also proven too uneven in their application of force and forbearance.



For an introduction to Iraqi historiography, see Marion Farouk-Sluglett and Peter Sluglett, “The Historiography of Modern Iraq” (American Historical Review 96, no. 5 (1991): 1408–1421). For the Ottoman period, see Dina Rizk Khoury, State and Provincial Society in the Ottoman Empire: Mosul, 1540–1834 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1997); and Gökhan Çetinsaya, The Ottoman Administration of Iraq, 1890–1908 (London: Routledge, 2006). World War I is covered in Mohammad Gholi Majd, Iraq in World War I: From Ottoman Rule to British Conquest (Lanham, Md.: University Press of America, 2006) and in David Fromkin'sA Peace to End all Peace (New York: Henry Holt, 1989). An interesting work of a more personal, literary tenor is Jafar Pasha al-Askari, A Soldier's Story: From Ottoman Rule to Independent Iraq (translated from the Arabic by Mustafa Tariq al-Askari. London: Arabian Publishers, 2003.

Important on the British period in Iraq are Peter Sluglett, Britain in Iraq, 1914–1932, 2d ed. (London: I. B. Tauris, 2007); Toby Dodge, Inventing Iraq: The Failure of Nation Building and a History Denied (London: Hurst, 2003); Reeva Spector Simon, Iraq Between the Two World Wars: the Militarist Origins of Tyranny, updated ed. (New York: Columbia University Press, 2004); Reeva Spector Simon and Eleanor H. Tejirian, eds., The Creation of Iraq, 1914–1921 (New York: Columbia University Press, 2004); and Liora Lukitz, A Quest in the Middle East: Gertrude Bell and the Making of Modern Iraq (London: I. B. Tauris, 2006).

On modern Iraq into the 1960s, see ʿAli al-Wardi, Lamahat ijtimaʿiya min tarikh al-ʿIraq al-Hadith (8 vols., Baghdad, 1969–1972), which also covers the Ottoman period, and his shorter Dirasa fi Ṭabiʿat al-Mujtamaʿ al-ʿIraqi (Baghdad, 1966); and Hanna Batatu, The Old Social Classes and the Revolutionary Movements of Iraq (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1978). On Batatu's work, see Robert A. Fernea and William Roger Louis, eds., The Iraqi Revolution of 1958: The Old Social Classes Revisited (London: I. B. Tauris, 1991).

For more general works on Iraq, consult ʿAbd al-Razzaq al-Hasani, Tarikh al-Wizarat al-ʿIraqiya, 10 vols. (Sidon, Lebanon, 1953–1961), which contains a comprehensive chronicle of the Iraqi monarchy. Elie Kedourie'sThe Chatham House Version and Other Middle-Eastern Essays, new ed. (New York: University Press of New England, 1984), has an excellent chapter on Iraq up to 1958. Kedourie'sPolitics in the Middle East (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992) extends the narrative into the 1980s and is suited to a more general reader. Works on modern Iraqi history include Phebe Marr, The Modern History of Iraq, 2d ed. (Boulder, Colo.: Westview Press, 2004); and Marion Farouk Sluglett and Peter Sluglett, Iraq Since 1958: From Revolution to Dictatorship, rev. ed. (London: I. B. Tauris, 1990). More recent general treatments of Iraq up through the rule of Saddam Hussein include Charles Tripp, A History of Iraq, 3d ed. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007); and William R. Polk, Understanding Iraq: The Whole Sweep of Iraqi History, 2d ed. (New York: HarperCollins, 2005).

Scholarship on Kurdish Iraq includes a comprehensive study by Ferhad Ibrahim, Die Kurdische Nationalbewegung im Irak (Berlin: Schwarz, 1983); Edmund Ghareeb, The Kurdish Question in Iraq (Syracuse, N.Y.: Syracuse University Press, 1981); and The Kurds: A Contemporary Overview, edited by Philip G. Kreyenbroek and Stefan Sperl (London, Routledge, 1992). More recently, see David McDowall, A Modern History of the Kurds, 3d ed. (London: I. B. Tauris, 2004); and Kerim Yildiz, The Kurds in Iraq: Past, Present, and Future, rev. ed. (London: Pluto Press, 2007).

For Shiism in Iraq, see Pierre-Jean Luizard, La formation de l’Irak contemporain: Le rÔle politique des ulémas Chiites à la fin de la domination ottomane et au moment de la construction de l’état irakien (Paris: Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, 1991); Meir Litvak, Shiʿi Scholars of Nineteenth-Century Iraq: The ʿUlamaʿ of Najaf and Karbala’ (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002); and Chibli Mallat, The Renewal of Islamic Law: Muhammad Baqer as-Sadr, Najaf, and the Shiʿi International (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993). Yitzhak Nakash'sThe Shiʿis of Iraq, 2d ed. (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2003) is an excellent, comprehensive work covering nearly all aspects of Shīʿī life into the 1990s. His Reaching for Power: The Shiʿa in the Modern Arab World (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2006) and Vali Nasr'sThe Shia Revival (New York: W. W. Norton, 2007) put Iraqi trends in larger regional context. Work on other minority groups in Iraq includes Moshe Gat, The Jewish Exodus from Iraq, 1948–1951 (London: Frank Cass, 1997); R. S. Stafford, The Tragedy of the Assyrian Minority in Iraq, new ed. (London: Kegan Paul, 2004). For Yazidis, see Nelida Fuccaro, The Other Kurds: Yazidis in Colonial Iraq (London: I.B. Tauris, 1999).

For social history prior to the Baʿth era, see Elizabeth Warnock Fernea, Guests of the Sheik: An Ethnography of an Iraqi Village (New York: Anchor Books, 1965), and for Iraqi ideological movements in the context of the larger Arab world, see Adeed Dawisha, Arab Nationalism in the Twentieth Century: From Triumph to Despair (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2005).

The Baʿth regime of Saddam Hussein prior to 1990 is covered in Samir al-Khalil (Kanan Makiya), Republic of Fear: The Inside Story of Saddam's Iraq, updated ed. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998); Amatzia Baram, Culture, History & Ideology in the Formation of Baʿthist Iraq, 1968–89 (New York: St Martin's Press, 1991); Eric Davis, Memories of State: Politics, History, and Collective Identity in Modern Iraq (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2005); Muhsin al-Musawi, Reading Iraq: Culture and Power in Conflict (London: I. B. Tauris, 2006); Eberhard Kienle, Baʿth v. Baʿth: The Conflict between Syria and Iraq, 1968–1989 (London: I. B. Tauris, 1990); and Shahram Chubin and Charles Tripp, Iran and Iraq at War (London: I. B. Tauris, 1988).

For the Gulf War, see Lawrence Freedman and Efraim Karsh, The Gulf Conflict, 1990–1991: Diplomacy and War in the New World Order (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1993). On the struggle for democracy in Iraq, the reader may consult three articles by Chibli Mallat: “The Search for Law and Stability in Iraq” (Orient 2 (1994): 194–215); “Obstacles to Democratization in Iraq: A Reading of Post-Revolutionary Iraqi History Through the Gulf War” (pp. 224–247) and “Voices of Opposition: The International Committee for a Free Iraq” (pp. 174–187), both in Rules and Rights in the Middle East: Democracy, Law, and Society, edited by Ellis Goldberg et al., (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1993).

For the years between the Gulf War of 1990–1991 and the Iraq War beginning in 2003, see Sarah Graham-Brown, Sanctioning Saddam: The Politics of Intervention in Iraq (London: I. B. Tauris, 1999); Amatzia Baram, “Neo-Tribalism in Iraq: Saddam Hussein's Tribal Policies, 1991–1996” (International Journal of Middle East Studies 29, no. 1 (1997): 1–31); Faleh Jabar, “Sheikhs and Ideologues: Deconstruction and Reconstruction of Tribes under Patrimonial Totalitarianism in Iraq, 1968–1998” (pp. 69–109) and Hosham Dawod, “The ‘State-ization’ of the Tribe and the Tribalization of the State: The Case of Iraq” (pp. 110–135), both in Faleh Jabar and Hosham Dawod, eds., Tribes and Power: Nationalism and Ethnicity in the Middle East (London: Saqi Books, 2003); see also David M. Malone, The International Struggle Over Iraq: Politics in the UN Security Council, 1980–2005 (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2006).

For coverage of the 2003 war and its aftermath, see Anthony Shadid, Night Draws Near: Iraq's People in the Shadow of America's War (New York: Henry Holt, Picador, 2006); George Packer, The Assassins’ Gate: America in Iraq (New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2005); Ali A. Allawi, The Occupation of Iraq: Winning the War, Losing the Peace (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2007); and Ahmed Hashim, Insurgency and Counter-Insurgency in Iraq (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 2006).

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