The civil war in Syria and a resurgent Al Qaeda are the proximate causes for rising bloodshed in Iraq. But persistent government failure deserves a closer look.
There are some strange elements to this report.
The US has hit Yemen with seven drone strikes in a little more than a week.
Yemen plot foiled: The Yemen government says it uncovered an Al Qaeda plot to attack oil and gas facilities in the country. Although the Yemen plot was foiled, Islamic militants have previously carried out a stream of attacks against energy infrastructure in the area, including natural gas and oil pipelines.
When Al Qaeda attacked US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, it began a culture of aggressive security in US diplomatic missions, writes former ambassador John Campbell.