In testimony before the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, Ray Takeyh says that mutual antipathy to the presence of the Iranian opposition party Mujahidin-i Khalq in Iraq is the one issue that has brought Tehran and Baghdad together.
A rise in Iraq's violence and sectarian tensions--and the highest U.S. monthly combat deaths since 2008--come amid mounting concerns over the government's role and questions about the U.S. troop presence, says expert Sean Kane.
Dan Caldwell, distinguished professor of political science at Pepperdine University, discusses the findings of his book Vortex of Conflict: U.S. Policy Toward Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq with students.
Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr's return to Iraq after self-imposed exile in Iran bolsters voices that want all U.S. troops out by the end of 2011 and marks the transition of his group from a militia to a powerful political force, says CFR's Mohamad Bazzi.
Iraq's coalition government is a promising resolution to nine months of political wrangling after national elections, says expert Joost Hiltermann, but questions loom about how effective the power-sharing agreement will be.
Mohamad Bazzi says that as Nouri al-Maliki has finally cobbled together Iraq's new government, the bitter compromises and power-sharing deals are likely to unleash a sectarian clash between Shias, the minority Sunnis, and Kurds.
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