Tuesday, September 26th, 2017
Home »Editorials » Iraqi forces retake Mosul
The Iraqi forces have taken back Mosul from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) or Daesh, and there are also reports that the entity's founder Abu-Bakr al-Baghdadi is dead. President Trump, for example, has tweeted: "Big wins against ISIS (ISIL)." This is indeed a huge victory for Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's government as well as for the United States which provided air support to the Iraqi troops all through the nine-month campaign. "I announce from here the end and the failure and the collapse of the terrorist state of falsehood and terrorism which the terrorist Daesh announced from here," said Prime Minister al-Abadi as he arrived at the ruined city not very far from the site where once stood the 12th century Al-Noori mosque with its famous leaning minaret. It was this mosque from where al-Baghdadi declared his 'caliphate'. The Iraq's second largest city with pre-war population of 1.5 million is now nothing but debris. It was one of the most devastating urban warfares in present times in which thousands died or wounded. Nearly 70 percent of its residents have fled and may not be able to return to their homes anytime soon. The question how Mosul will return to normalcy and regain its socio-cultural milieu has an answer in al-Abadi's approach to the challenge who would consider it "another mission ahead of us, to create stability, to build and clear Daesh cells and the unity."

Al-Baghdadi's 'caliphate' is over, but is it also the end of the Daesh appeal and its murderous campaign? Not yet. Not only are its followers in possession of a significant chunk of territory on both sides of Iraq-Syria borders, they are able to keep operational headquarter in Syrian city of Raqqa functional. Then the Daesh is far more tech-savvy than the al Qaeda and its genre, including the Boko Haram and Al-Shabbab, and is expected to keep fighting in there, as well launch "lone wolves" attacks in Europe and elsewhere. Then it is also a fact that succession for leadership constitutes no serious problem for the Daesh.

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