Iraq seethes on edge of another social explosion

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kazemi has a stability problem.

Catapulted to power this year amid an outcry over the predecessor government’s mass killing of street protestors agitating against corruption, unemployment and poor state services, Kazemi now faces his own crisis as the nation teeters precariously on the edge of financial and economic collapse.  

A former journalist and Saddam Hussein-era exile who returned to Iraq after America’s 2003 invasion and occupation, Kazemi’s political career was fast-tracked when he was appointed to administer the country’s intelligence services in 2016.

That surprise appointment opened the door for Kazemi to enter the political scene, where he quickly found himself in the delicate and difficult position of trying to balance relations between the United States and neighboring Iran.