Though the Iraqi reconquest of Tikrit isn’t entirely complete, officials are eager to try to build on the relative success of the operation against ISIS, which took virtually an entire month.
What’s next for the war on ISIS? There seems to be some disagreement, with the Obama Administration hoping to turn the attention back to Mosul, by far the largest city ISIS has taken.
This could be a tough target, however. The Tikrit battle didn’t exactly go easily, despite having a much smaller number of ISIS defenders than Mosul is believed to. That major city could set up a multi-month siege.
The Shi’ite militias who did the heavy lifting in Tikrit aren’t too eager to jump into another major battle for an even bigger city right away, and instead are urging the Iraqi government to turn its attention to the far eastern portion of the Anbar Province, which is nominally controlled by ISIS but isn’t particularly heavily defended.