In The Media

ISIS’s defeat won’t mean a stable Iraq, says defence chief

by Lee Berthiaume (feat. Thomas Juneau)

Macleans
September 21, 2016

OTTAWA – Western military intervention may have prevented a “short-term calamity” in Iraq, but it is only the start of a long effort to bring peace and stability to the country, says Canada’s defence chief.

“My belief is that the work we’re doing now militarily in Iraq is the first step in a long, long journey to ensure the success of that region into the future,” Gen. Jonathan Vance told the Senate defence committee Wednesday.

Concerns about Iraq’s long-term stability are mounting after its parliament sacked a high-profile minister for the second time in a month.

Finance minister Hoshiyar Zebari was impeached Wednesday on allegations of corruption – the same fate that befell defence minister Khaled al-Obaidi at the end of August.

The allegations have not been publicly proven, and some believe they are actually politically motivated and intended to weaken Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s grip on power.

There has also been an uptick in violence between some of the various Iraqi groups, including Kurdish forces and Shia militias, that have until now been united in their fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

Thomas Juneau, an expert on Middle East politics at the University of Ottawa, said the fear is that such infighting will only increase as Iraq’s various ethnic, religious and political factions begin to stake out ground for the post-ISIL era.

“Everybody’s fighting ISIL right now,” he said. “But this coalition – in the loosest term – against ISIL is very weak in the sense that the only glue that holds it together is fighting against ISIL. So the more ISIL weakens, the more glue that barely holds this coalition together also weakens.”

Vance told the Senate committee that ISIL – also known variously as the Islamic State, ISIS and Daesh – will be dismantled or at least rendered militarily insignificant in Iraq. However, he said there are a variety of other issues that need to be addressed, including the country’s many political, economic and social challenges.

“Political stability, the rule of law, democratic principles, all of that, is of huge importance to the long-term success of Iraq,” he said.

“We prevented the short-term calamity that would have been the Islamic State in Baghdad. But there’s lots more to be done.”

But Juneau said that is more easily said than done.

The reality is that the West doesn’t have as much sway over internal Iraqi politics as it would like to believe, he noted. As a result, the divisions that many have blamed for creating the conditions to let a group like ISIL grow are unlikely to go away any time soon.

“In practice, there’s very little that can be done,” Juneau said. “What everyone is realizing is this pressure is not working.”


Be the first to comment

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.
SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTERS
 
SEARCH
PODCAST

Canada's State of Trade: Getting Our Goods To Market

May 17, 2018


On today's Global Exchange Podcast, we continue our series on the state of Canadian trade in a world of growing populism and protectionism. Today's episode, recorded during our February 13th State of Trade conference in Ottawa, features Bruce Borrows, Jennifer Fox, and David Miller in conversation with the Wilson Center's Laura Dawson about getting Canadian goods to international markets.


IN THE MEDIA

Between Trump, Iran and North Korea, Canada’s G7 has a high potential for chaos

by Chris Hall (feat. James Trottier & Colin Robertson), CBC News, May 18, 2018

The struggle Trudeau could face if Kinder Morgan walks away from Trans Mountain

by Robert Tuttle & Michael Bellusci (feat. Dennis McConaghy), Bloomberg News, May 18, 2018

Canada 'a laughing stock': Experts react to Trans Mountain indemnity

by April Fong (feat. Dennis McConaghy), BNN Bloomberg, May 18, 2018

AUDIO: NAFTA update

with Danielle Smith (feat. Sarah Goldfeder), Global News Radio, May 18, 2018

VIDEO: NAFTA Deadline Day (@ 3:00)

with Don Martin (feat. John Weekes), CTV Power Play, May 17, 2018

VIDEO: Deal or no deal on NAFTA: Canada and U.S. send mixed messages

with Rosemary Barton (feat. Colin Robertson), CBC The National, May 17, 2018

Trump’s 'submission' strategy is not working so expect NAFTA talks to drag on

by Kevin Carmichael (Feat. Eric Miller), Financial Post, May 17, 2018

Backstop deal may be last hope for TransMountain pipeline, says former oil executive

by CBC News (feat. Dennis McConaghy), CBC News, May 17, 2018

Stuck with limited oil export options, Liberals may regret B.C. tanker ban

by John Ivison (feat. Dennis McConaghy), National Post, May 17, 2018

Feds OK early start to construction of navy’s new supply ships

by Lee Berthiaume (feat. Dave Perry), The Canadian Press, May 17, 2018


LATEST TWEETS

HEAD OFFICE
Canadian Global Affairs Institute
Suite 1800, 421-7th Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2P 4K9

 

OTTAWA OFFICE
Canadian Global Affairs Institute
8 York Street, 2nd Floor
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1N 5S6

 

Phone: (613) 288-2529
Email: contact@cgai.ca
Web: cgai.ca

 

Making sense of our complex world.
Déchiffrer la complexité de notre monde.

 

© 2002-2018 Canadian Global Affairs Institute
Charitable Registration No. 87982 7913 RR0001

 


Sign in with Facebook | Sign in with Twitter | Sign in with Email