On October 16, military forces aligned with Iraq's federal government swept into Kirkuk and drove out the Kurdish militias that had provided security for the city since 2014. They then went on to conquer neighboring areas as well. Baghdad's assertion of authority over the disputed territory followed a referendum in which Iraqi Kurds had overwhelmingly voted in favor of independence. What will be the fallout of this crisis for Iraq and Iraqi Kurdistan? What role can regional powers play to defuse tensions in the country? How will the US navigate the situation given its previous support for both sides?
Recommended reading available here: http://cmes.berkeley.edu/mena-salon/
Every Friday in the semester, the CMES hosts an informal weekly coffee hour and guided discussion of current events in the Middle East and North Africa, open to all and free of charge. Check the calendar the Monday before the Salon for the current week's topic.