Iraq’s Chinese-Made Killer Drones
Iraq’s defense minister Khaled Al Obaidi visited Ubaydah Bin Al Jarrah Air Base, a former MiG base in the eastern part of the country. A photo of the media event revealed a Chinese-made CH-4 drone — Beijing’s answer to America’s Predator — in the background, wearing Iraqi colors. The... Read more
Smugglers Risk Death in the Shadow of Iran
This is part two of a two-part series. Read part one. The morning light streams through the tent, a Kurdish flag flapping in a strong wind. The temperature dropped last night, and those on guard put on warm jackets. The long dry summer is coming to an end. The morning routine begins... Read more
Into the Mountains With Kurdish Rebels Fighting Iran
This is part one of a two-part series. Read part two. Kurdish music blasts through low-quality speakers inside our bus. Some of the passengers clap to the rhythm while the older ones point to landmarks across the arid landscape, informing the younger and more inexperienced travelers the names of... Read more
We Watched Kurdish Fighters Clash With Islamic State
The dull roar of circling coalition aircraft fills the night sky over the town of Bashiqa. Below, perched on a dusty mountain that takes its name from the same town, Kurdish peshmerga fighters alternate between scanning enemy territory in front of them and peering up to catch a glimpse... Read more
Turkey Claims It Will Wipe Out the PKK — Here’s a Million Reasons Why It Can’t
The Turkish government talks tough. “You cannot discourage us from our war on terror,” Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said earlier this month. “Those mountains will be cleared of these terrorists. Whatever it takes, they will be cleared.” Davutoglu was referring to the bombing campaign against the Kurdistan Workers Party,... Read more
Kurdish Fighters Storm Buildings, Train for Urban War
Originally published on May 18, 2015. Peshmerga fighters of the 4th Battalion laid down covering fire as their comrades crossed a street in a half-built housing complex outside the city of Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan’s regional capital. Smoke from fires lit by coalition instructors added to the reality of the... Read more
Even More Iraqi and Syrian Civilians May Have Died in U.S. Air Strikes
The United States has carried out thousands of air strikes in Iraq and Syria, and doesn’t know how many civilians have died in them. But now we’ve learned that the U.S. military’s top headquarters for the region is still investigating nearly two dozen incidents. Earlier in August, War Is Boring obtained an official... Read more
The Pentagon Doesn’t Know How Many Civilians It Has Killed in Iraq and Syria
The Pentagon has looked into hundreds of possible civilian casualties from the bombing campaign in Iraq and Syria. But Washington is having trouble keeping track of everything — including its own allies. Since August 2014, the American-led coalition has lobbed nearly 14,000 bombs and missiles in thousands of individual... Read more
Iraqi Troops Are Training for Chemical Combat
A photo of Iraqi army soldiers, shot in May but only recently published by American advisers, depicts the Iraqis wearing gas masks in training. “The soldiers are training with new issued equipment that was donated by the U.S. and other coalition forces to better prepare the Iraqi army for... Read more
We Watched Kurdish Troops Train With Guided Missiles
The students sweated in the July heat of a classroom on their last day of training. They watched as two young Peshmerga second lieutenants disassembled a large tripod for a MILAN anti-tank guided missile launcher. We had a chance to observe this missile training course during a visit to... Read more

Matt Cetti-Roberts

Photojournalist, documentary photographer and correspondent in Iraqi-Kurdistan

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