The American Interest
Policy, Politics & Culture
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Syria Spills Over The Meaning of Mosul

The fall of Mosul and Tikrit to ISIS is a wake-up call to all the states of the region: It’s time to put an end to the Syrian civil war and the sectarian mayhem it has spawned.

Published on June 12, 2014
The fall of Mosul (and now Tikrit) to the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq (ISIS), an al-Qaeda affiliate, is fallout of a new and shocking sort from the Syrian civil war. Even if ISIS’s occupation turns out to be both partial and temporary, like Ansar al-Din’s occupation of Timbuktu some months ago, it represents a colossal setback for all the actors in the region, even if some of those actors are at odds with others. This is because ISIS represents the ultimate in radicalization, and yet it was able to launch and sustain a fairly sophisticated military operation...