As the sectarian nature of the ongoing war gets more and more overt, Iraqi Shi’ite militias have succeeded in holding Diyala Province capital Baqubah, and are said to be displaying bodies of slain ISIS fighters at multiple sites in the city.
The grim spectacle is now a part of everyday life for Baqubahns, as they drive through intersections with beheaded corpses looming overhead, and face the prospect of another ISIS push against them.
So far, Baqubah is relatively secure, but ISIS has been making inroads in the Sunni villages in the immediate vicinity, and have obvious designs on eventually pushing into the capital itself. Baqubah is yet another provincial capital not far outside of Baghdad, and would give ISIS yet another staging area from which to attack the national capital.
Though Baqubah is nominally under control of the Iraqi Army at this point, it is clear that the militias are doing all of the heavy lifting in the fight against ISIS, with volunteers from Ayatollah Sistani’s call to arms thrust into a major warzone.