During the post-2003 era, secular and Islamic movements in Iraq have offered different proposals for their country, ravaged by decades of wars, blockade and tyranny. The secularists soon realized, however, that they could not adequately compete with the Islamists, who were supported by neighboring countries and enjoyed large popular bases. Thus, Sunni and Shiite religious parties came to control Iraqi politics.
This situation has led some secularists to take on an Islamist image to win elected seats. Others, however, abandoned politics entirely, as was the case with the veteran politician Adnan Pachachi in 2005, while others temporarily left politics, such as Mithal al-Alusi after the killing of his children in 2005 and his ouster from the Iraqi parliament in 2008.