In 45 seconds: How strong is Iraq's army?
2 March 2015 Last updated at 16:23 GMT
Iraq's army benefited from years of US and British training, as well as billions of dollars in military aid, as it was rebuilt following the US-led invasion in 2003.
But it has suffered a string of humiliating defeats by far smaller numbers of jihadist militants from Islamic State (IS) since January 2014.
The BBC assesses how strong the army really is - in 45 seconds.
Video produced by Michael Hirst and Sara Barman