While fighting in and around the Syrian border town of Kobani has been the focus of attention in recent days alarm bells are again sounding in Baghdad after ISIL made gains in Anbar province.
The militant Islamists are again within range of the Iraqi capital, and for the past few days have been hitting Shi’ite districts with car bombs, with a heavy loss of life.
ISIL’s strategy remains one of division and sectarian revenge against the Shi’ites as it seeks to further destabilise the government. The towns of Hit and Kubaisa have fallen, and the dam at Haditha is now in striking distance. Should ISIL capture that it will control much of the Euphrates’ water supply.
The alliance ranged against ISIL remains vague about how it will stop the extremists.
“Obviously at this point we are focused on the fighting that is taking place in Iraq’s Anbar province and we are deeply concerned about the situation in and around the Syrian town of Kobani which underscores the threat that ISIL poses in both Syria and Iraq, and coalition airstrikes will continue in both areas,” said US President Barack Obama.
Yet they have not checked ISIL’s advance, and with the worsening situation in Baghdad some are asking how long will it be before the pressure to commit ground forces becomes too great?