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ICC Note: Is the Islamic State a new norm for the Middle East? While many regions in the world have improved in the last few years, the Middle East has not. At the Jaipur Literature Festival this year, Middle East expert Emma Sky explains the state of the Middle East in a ‘a world of disruptions.’

01/21/2017 Middle East (Business Standard): The Islamic State (IS) may be on the backfoot but is still entrenched in some of its strongholds like Mosul, leading to the worrying prospect if the terror outfit is be the “new normal” for the Middle East since the grievances that led to its rise have not been dealt with, warn area experts.

While most of the regions of the world were improving, the Middle East, which has seen a number of major disruptions in the last few years, was not one of them, said British expert on the Middle East, Emma Sky in a session “A World of Disruptions” on the second day of the Jaipur Literature Festival-2017 on Friday.

“There is a long struggle ahead for the Middle East,” she said and credited the rise of the Islamic State, despite its having “no vision for the future”, to the destructive civil war unleashed in Iraq after the US invasion in 2003, the failure of Arab states, and the growing power of Iran in the region.

“The grievances that led to the IS’ rise have not been dealt with.”

Sky, who also served as a political advisor to the US military commander in Iraq, Gen Ray Odierno from 2007 to 2010 and wrote “The Unraveling: High Hopes and Missed Opportunities in Iraq” on her experiences, contends that the US-led liberal world order,hat came into being after the Second World War, didn’t start unravelling after 9/11 but the US invasion of Iraq in 2003.

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