Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies Program on Energy and Sustainable Development Stanford University


Image of Cover

Iraq's Civil War

Journal Article

James D. Fearon - Stanford University

Published by
Foreign Affairs, Vol. 86 no. 2
March-April 2007

The White House still avoids the label, but by any reasonable historical standard, the Iraqi civil war has begun. The record of past such wars suggests that Washington cannot stop this one -- and that Iraqis will be able to reach a power-sharing deal only after much more fighting, if then. The United States can help bring about a settlement eventually by balancing Iraqi factions from afar, but there is little it can do to avert bloodshed now.