This report from the United States Institute of Peace concludes a two-year study on Iraq’s new political leaders and their visions for the future, based on extensive background data and personal interviews with over seventy top leaders since 2003. The study finds that rapid and continuous change in political leaders is making it difficult for them to acquire experience and achieve effective government. Also, tensions between outsiders who were opponents of Saddam, and insiders, mainly those who served in the previous regime, are generating distrust and making compromise difficult. However, although ethnic and sectarian polarization persists, elections have produced a new political constellation of parties—and militias—with a greater variety of views and constituencies. This development may provide some opportunity for new alignments across the ethnic and sectarian divides.