While Baghdad sinks deeper into a political crisis, Iraq’s evergreen national security advisor Faleh al-Fayad visited Paris last week. Accompanied by a delegation of generals, he met the French defence minister Jean-Yves Le Drian a few days after Le Drian’s “surprise” visit – reported ahead of time by Intelligence Online (IOL 757) – to Iraq last month. The talks were focused on training for the Iraqi Counter Terrorism Service (ICTS), which Paris would like to contact out to a private company (IOL 738). However despite intense lobbying on the part of the French, no training contract has been awarded. The ICTS is short of money and the countries in the international coalition against Islamic State (IS) are already providing a lot of trainers.