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War Clouds Over Iraq and Ukraine

6:33 PM, Jun 11, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
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Reuters is reporting that:

Sunni Islamist insurgents seized control of Iraq's second largest city of Mosul early on Tuesday in a spectacular show of strength against the Shi'ite-led government, which called on parliament to declare a state of emergency. The capture of Mosul by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) - an offshoot of al Qaeda - and its allies followed four days of fighting in the northern city and attacks in other towns. Residents said ISIL black flags and banners were flying on captured government buildings.

Once, there was a surge, an Anbar Awakening, and something like stability in Iraq. Now … it spirals into chaos, like Syria.

Meanwhile, as Thomas Grove, also of Reuters, reports, the shelling of cities in Ukraine proceeds as:

Dozens of charred bicycles stand upright in the rubble of a burnt-out sports shop in Slaviansk, a strategic stronghold for pro-Russian separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine. After a week of intensified shelling by government forces, windows of buildings on the outskirts of the city have been blown out, fires have gutted stores and the hulks of damaged Soviet-era cars lie abandoned in the road. A few stores are still operating in the leafy town center, where the muffled sound of mortar fire drifts in from areas around the city edges, but life has been transformed even there.

Whatever the Obama foreign policy – and it is hard to articulate – right now, it isn’t working.

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