Iraqi Premier Hayder Abadi has continued the government’s purge of army commanders seen as responsible for the decisive defeats the Iraqi military suffered at the hands of ISIS over the summer, a policy started by former PM Nouri al-Maliki.
Abadi announced today that 26 military commanders were being fired for corruption, incompetence, or both. This followed a sermon by Iraqi Shi’ite leader Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani blasted the Iraqi military’s corruption.
Sistani’s sermon blamed corruption for the loss of large portions of the nation’s west to ISIS, and added to the push to speed up a purge aimed at purging the nation’s least competent military leaders.
The question, however, is how many of the purged leaders are actually involved in the fight with ISIS, and how many are being purged for political reasons. Either way, there is a risk that such moves will worsen the already atrocious morale problem in the Iraqi military.