In northern Syria and western Iraq Al Qaeda forces are gaining ground with the declared aim of establishing an Islamist caliphate in the heart of the Arab world, a miniature replication of the Muslim empire that once stretched from Spain to Indonesia, and a potential launching pad for jihad across the region.
In this month’s current affairs lead story Ed Blanche looks at the legacy of the Iraq war, the rise of Al Qaeda and the bloodbath in Syria and what the consequences of each might be.
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