In February of 2016 the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad issued a blunt warning to its diplomats. It said, “Mosul Dam faces a serious and unprecedented risk of catastrophic failure with little warning,” Failure of the dam would flood Mosul in some areas to 60 feet. The water would continue down river and reach Baghdad in four days. The embassy told its staff to try to stay over 3 miles away from a river bank.
There was a good deal of media coverage of this last February and then it stopped. Naturally the assumption is that things had been “taken care of”. Seems not. Not much really has been done.
The main measure that was done was to lower the maximum amount of water allowed in the damn. That reduced the number under risk to only 364,000.
The New Yorker’s Dexter Filkins writes about it here.