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Nouri Maliki
Oil-rich Kirkuk in Iraq's north fears attack by Islamic State
Oil-rich Kirkuk in Iraq's north fears attack by Islamic State

Southeast of this city, at a place called Hill of the Flowers, Kurdish forces gaze toward a concrete bridge bedecked with fluttering black flags. The guns of a few Soviet-era tanks peer from a nearby ditch at this makeshift frontier not found on any map. A steady stream of traffic flows in both directions, but the midday calm is deceptive: This spot marks the dividing line between Kurdish-controlled territory and lands under the dominion of Islamic State, the extremist faction that holds sway in vast stretches of northern Iraq and neighboring Syria. "We are ready for them," said Maj. Nasser Jaff, commander of Kurdish forces known as peshmerga, standing less than a mile from his...

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