Hundreds of young Iraqi men are flocking to volunteer centres across Baghdad to join the fight against Islamic militants who advanced across the country's north this week.
They were responding to a call by Iraq's most revered Shiite cleric for Iraqis to defend their country against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, which seized Iraq's second largest city Mosul and Saddam Hussein's home town of Tikrit in a lightning advance.
The call was made by a representative of the Iranian-born grand ayatollah Ali al-Sistani. His call, while resonating with Iraq's Shiite majority, could aggravate the Sunni-Shiite sectarian divide, which nearly tore the country apart in 2006 and 2007.
The Foreign Secretary has been clear on the threat of Isis, but he has ruled out the prospect of any UK military involvement in the crisis.
Iraq’s foreign minister, Hoshyar Zebari, is a natural diplomat. Polite, immaculately dressed, and blessed with a great memory.
Isis has paraded military equipment in Mosul it captured from when the Iraqi army fled in what some see as a "nightmare scenario."