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Analysis & Commentary

18th January 2017 – FDD Press

Qatar and Terror Finance

David Andrew Weinberg

Qatar and Terror Finance

Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani abdicated as the emir of Qatar in June of 2013, making his son Tamim the youngest ruler in the Arab world. Hamad’s reign was characterized by persistent negligence toward local U.S.-designated funders of al-Qaeda, but some American officials have expressed hope that Emir Tamim would turn over a new leaf in Qatar’s approach to tackling terror finance. more...

18th January 2017 – Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Honor Alberto Nisman’s sacrifice by continuing his probe of Iran

Toby Dershowitz

Honor Alberto Nisman’s sacrifice by continuing his probe of Iran

On Jan. 18, 2015, Argentine terrorism prosecutor Alberto Nisman was found dead with a gunshot wound to his head in what was almost certainly murder, not suicide. Whoever murdered him didn’t just want to kill him but rather his body of work. They wanted to bury the revelations he was about to make the very next day in front of the country’s Congress. more...

18th January 2017 – The Washington Times

Defining violent extremism down

Clifford D. May

Defining violent extremism down

Death, where is thy sting? For Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, it certainly didn’t come from the mainstream media. The 82-year-old former Iranian president died of a heart attack earlier this month. The New York Times called him an “influential voice against hard-liners” and “a main voice in Iran calling for outreach to the West.” The Los Angeles Times said he had been “one of the most powerful allies of moderates in Tehran.” National Public Radio praised him as “a leading voice for reform.” The news section of The Wall Street Journal agreed that he was a “leading voice among moderate politicians.” more...

13th January 2017 – FDD Research

Should Boeing and Airbus sell planes to Iran Air?

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Should Boeing and Airbus sell planes to Iran Air?

In January 2016, Airbus inked a deal to sell 118 planes to Iran Air, the Islamic Republic’s flag carrier, and in June of that year, Boeing announced it had reached a deal for the sale of 100 aircraft as well. In September, the U.S. Department of the Treasury issued initial export licenses for both companies to deliver the jetliners. In November, Airbus received the official export license and just this week delivered its first plane to Iran Air. more...

15th January 2017 – Lawfare

Terrorists, Insurgents, Something Else? Clarifying and Classifying the “Generational Challenge”

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross

Terrorists, Insurgents, Something Else? Clarifying and Classifying the “Generational Challenge”

The Trump administration’s appointments have signaled that it will continue to prioritize the fight against jihadist violent non-state actors (VNSAs)—a broad term that we find far more useful than an exclusive focus on terrorist groups, but a term in desperate need of clarification. In this article we provide a taxonomy of VNSAs that can be used to produce more rigorous discussion of them. more...

13th January 2017 – The Hill

Meet Venezuela’s new VP, fan of Iran and Hezbollah

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Meet Venezuela’s new VP, fan of Iran and Hezbollah

Facing a parliamentary vote to oust him and a call for new elections, Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro on Jan. 4 replaced Vice President Aristóbulo Istúriz with regime loyalist Tareck El Aissami, the governor of Aragua State. El Aissami's appointment comes at a critical time for the embattled Bolivarian regime. Venezuela's economy is spiraling into chaos under the crushing weight of triple-digit inflation, basic commodities shortages, widespread corruption and violent crime. more...

16th January 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

Easing Sanctions on Sudan Erodes U.S. Leverage

Jonathan Schanzer

Easing Sanctions on Sudan Erodes U.S. Leverage

The U.S. Department of the Treasury on Friday eased sanctions against Sudan based on improved behavior, and with the expectation that Sudan “sustains [the] positive actions it has taken over the last 6 months.” The move, which comes after months of rumors that Sudan would be removed entirely from the U.S. terrorism sponsors list, punts the six-month review to the Donald Trump administration. more...

16th January 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

Another Palestinian Unity Agreement?

Grant Rumley

Another Palestinian Unity Agreement?

A coalition of Palestinian parties released a statement last week calling for the first session in over two decades of the parliamentary body of the PLO, the Palestinian National Council (PNC). more...

12th January 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

Treasury Targets North Korea’s Human Rights Abusers

Anthony Ruggiero

Treasury Targets North Korea’s Human Rights Abusers

The U.S. Department of the Treasury yesterday designated seven North Korean individuals and blocked two entities of the regime in response to North Korea’s human rights abuses and censorship activities. The State Department complemented the action with its Report on Human Rights Abuses and Censorship in North Korea. more...

10th January 2017 – The Washington Times

Lost in cyberspace

Clifford D. May

Lost in cyberspace

Russia’s hacking of the Democratic National Committee was mischievous. Did it change the outcome of the 2016 elections? No evidence suggests that and the intelligence community isn’t claiming that. more...