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Campaign against ISIL—one year on

Speakers: Panel includes Peter Jennings, Paul Allum, Greg Sheridan and moderated by MAJGEN (retd) Michael Clifford

ASPI hosted a discussion with ASPI Executive Director, Peter Jennings, Director of Intelligence at Unity Resources Group, Paul Allum, Foreign Editor at The Australian, Greg Sheridan, and Australia’s former Ambassador to Iraq, Lyndall Sachs.

The informative discussion touched on coalition operations in Iraq and Syria, politics in Baghdad and the role of Iran, Australia’s strategic policy in the Middle East, and porous borders; the humanitarian crisis in Syria, Iraq and neighbouring states.

Mr Allum provided the audience with an in-depth analysis of the current situation in Iraq and Syria, drawing upon his research findings at Unity Resources Group. This was followed by Mr Sheridan, who touched on Australia’s role in the Middle East and offered his opinion on what the Australian government should be doing in the region. Ms Sachs then shared her thoughts on the drivers behind the chaos in Iran based on her on the ground knowledge gathered from four years in Iraq as Australia’s Ambassador. As the final speaker, Mr Jennings offered his thoughts on his fellow panellists’ assessments of Iraq and Syria, and provided a strategic overview of the situation in the Middle East. ASPI Senior Fellow MAJGEN (retd) Michael Clifford then moderated a lively Q&A discussion which included a question from Jordan’s Ambassador to Australia, and other insightful questions from a number of attendees.