Photo: CSIS


Political, economic, and security trends in Iraq.

Iraq has faced repeated crises over the past several decades, and even today many call into question its future as a state. Efforts to establish a stable, secure and democratic Iraq continue amidst enduring sectarian tensions, an ongoing civil war in Syria, the rise of the Islamic State group, Kurdish ambitions for eventual statehood, and a regional cold war between Iraq's biggest neighbors—Iran and Saudi Arabia. Meanwhile, the Iraqi economy continues to depend heavily on the sale of a single commodity: oil. Throughout these many changes and challenges, Iraq's relationships with the United States and with its neighbors have been in flux. The Middle East Program examines these and other issues, looking at both history and current policy challenges and opportunities.

Iraq in the Balance

A production of the Brzezinski Institute on Geostrategy and the CSIS Middle East Program, "Iraq in the Balance" looks at how history, geography, power, and people have shaped Iraq's past and its potential future trajectories. Dr. Jon B. Alterman narrates this exploration of how Iraq's past affects questions about its future.

Video: Iraq in the Balance (Full) from CSIS on Vimeo.

See the Middle East Program's publications and past events on Iraq HERE.