Iraq Losing Battle Against Terrorism, While China Struggles With Its Own Strategy
Thousands Of Iraqis Trapped On Mountain Out Of Fear Of ISIS Time magazine reports on tens of thousands of Iraqis who remain trapped on a mountainside because, if they were to descend, they would likely be killed by members of ISIS.
“In the country’s far northwest, tens of thousands of people fleeing the Sunni extremist group Islamic State have been trapped on a mountain for days without water or other supplies. The refugees, primarily from the country’s Yazidi religious sect, have begun to die from dehydration and exposure, with no relief in sight.
“They face an excruciating dilemma — attempt to flee and risk being captured and killed by insurgents, or remain on Mount Sinjar in the hope that aid will somehow get through,” reports David Stout.
Because the roads are controlled by ISIS, United Nations officials are unable to reach them and many face starvation.
Dexter Filkins of The New Yorker says what is needed is for the US and the West to offer greater support to the Iraqi Kurds, one group which has been battling ISIS with consistency.
“What can be done? For starters, the U.S. can help the one group that is trying hardest to resist ISIS: the Kurds. The Kurds, who occupy a large swath of northeastern Iraq, now stand face to face with ISIS across a six-hundred-mile frontier. The Kurds are among America’s best friends in the Middle East; they are pro-Western, largely secular, and largely democratic. Since 1991, when Saddam Hussein’s latest attempt to launch a genocidal campaign against them was thwarted by the United States, the Kurds have more or less governed themselves,” he suggests.
China Losing In Its Battle Against Terrorism
Initial reports from China’s state media said Chinese security forces had only killed dozens of Uyghurs, an Islamic ethnic minority, but, according to Radio Free Asia, that number could be more than 2,000.
In May, the government announced it would begin to crack down on the Uyghurs, who they contend are Islamic terrorists.
Rebiya Kadeer, president of the Germany-based World Uyghur Congress (WUC), claims authorities have tried to cover up what she characterized as a “massacre” on July 28.
“It is clearly state terrorism and a crime against humanity by any standard committed by Chinese security forces against the unarmed Uyghur population,” she said, although her accusations could not be independently verified.
The recent violence is a sign that China may, in fact, be losing its war against terrorism, says Zachary Keck in The Diplomat.
“Based on what little information the reports provided, it appears the attack on Monday was closer to a large uprising among Uyghurs rather than an attack carried out by a terrorist cell. This uprising was almost certainly the result of the repressive policies China announced for the month of Ramadan, and possibly for the mass arrests and killings as part of the new war on terrorism.
“Indeed, based on China’s own announcements, it appears that its terrorism campaign is widely indiscriminate. The fact that 380 people were arrested during the first month of the war on terror suggests that Chinese authorities are conducting mass arrests of individuals,” he writes.
Just this week, one city went even further. Xinjiang, home to the Muslim Uyghurs, has banned wearing beards and Muslim headscarves on public buses, which is likely to inflame tensions.