Ranj Alaaldin

Ranj Alaaldin is a Visiting Scholar at Columbia University and a Doctoral Researcher at the London School of Economics and Political Science, where he focuses on Iraq and the Middle East. He previously specialised in the law of armed conflict and the use of force.

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Isis fighters have set fire to oil wells northeast of the city to obstruct the assault

Iraq has begun its campaign to rid itself of Isis — and it must go all out

If Iraqis want to push Isis out of the north, the jihadists cannot be given any chance to rebuild

Kurds celebrate as they drive along a street in Diyarbakir, southeastern Turkey, on January 26, 2015

Isis has finally been defeated in Kobani — but what happens next?

There's so much to learn from the victory of a small but determined group of Kurds

Iraqi volunteer fighters celebrate the breaking of the jihadist siege on the Shiite town of Amerli on September 1, 2014

Bombs can't defeat Isis, but Iraq's Sunnis can

The new Iraqi government has an unmissable opportunity to unite its people against the jihadists before they tear the country apart

Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga fighters look on as smoke billows from the town Makhmur, about 175 miles north of the capital Baghdad, during clashes with Isis militants

If Iraq is to survive, then it must be divided into separate regions

It is no coincidence that country's most stable areas are those where security and governance are in the hands of locally supported groups

File image: Bashar al-Assad has given his first American TV interview in two years, and denied his regime was behind the Damascus chemical weapons attack

Why Obama was right to call chemical weapons a ‘red line’

The West should pursue its initial course of punitive strikes

Iraqis inspect the site of a car bomb attack in Baghdad's impoverished district of Sadr City last month

Blame Iraq, not America, for sectarian civil war

Iraqi society is as polarised as ever. The ongoing battles over its future shape show that the country's divisions long pre-dated the Western invasion of a decade ago

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Day In a Page

Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing