I’ve always rejected the notion of Iraq being in a civil war due to the notion that a civil war requires two clearly defined sides and usually territories, be it Davis and Lincoln or Lenin and Kerensky.
While the two defining concepts in Iraq, Sunni and Shia, are clear, the fighting seems to be split up into 14-20 (from what I’ve read) different parties. Also, the fighting does not seem to be for control over the country, but rather ethnic cleansing of the classic variety, that is removing one group from a particular chunk of land.
What do you call that? It’s not quite anarchy, malignant diversity? Failure of integration? What?