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Pulling Iraq Back from the Edge of Civil War

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Publication Date: February 2006

Publisher(s): Heritage Foundation (Washington, D.C.)

Author(s): James Phillips

Topic: Politics (Insurgency, and counterinsurgency)

Keywords: Middle East; civil war; Askariya shrine bombing

Type: Brief

Coverage: Iraq


The sectarian violence following the bombing of the Shiite shrine in Samarra has pushed Iraq to the brink of civil war and dealt a major setback to U.S. efforts to build a stable democracy--just as it was intended to do. As bad as the current situation is, it underscores the point that most Iraqi factions are better served by sharing power in a broad-based government than by following the call of Islamic extremists on either side.