The Latest - Syria

Syria Latest

17th August 2018 – FDD Policy Brief

Assad Regime Restoring Economic Ties with Jordan and UAE

Tony Badran

Following the Assad regime’s recapture of opposition-held areas in southern Syria, pro-regime media have begun boasting the restoration of economic relations with Arab countries, namely Jordan and the United Arab Emirates. Damascus is eager to show that its success on the battlefield will persuade regional governments – including those friendly to the U.S. – to stop treating it as a pariah state. more...

10th August 2018 – Real Clear Defense

Is the Pentagon About to Hand Iran a Major Border Crossing?

Alexandra N. Gutowski

The Pentagon announced on Wednesday the start of its final ground offensive against the Islamic State in Syria. more...

8th August 2018 – Foreign Podicy

Podcast: The Iranian-Israeli Conflict Within the Syrian Civil War

Clifford D. May, Jonathan Schanzer, Tony Badran

For seven long years, Syria has been engulfed in civil war. The death toll now exceeds a half million. More than five million refugees have fled abroad, and millions more are internally displaced. more...

25th July 2018 – FDD's Long War Journal

US-led coalition: 6 Islamic State operatives plotted against Saudi Arabia, Sweden and US

Thomas Joscelyn

The US-led coalition announced on July 24 that at least six Islamic State operatives who had plotted terrorist attacks abroad have been killed in airstrikes since April. The jihadists were allegedly planning attacks in Saudi Arabia and Sweden, as well as against the US and American interests. more...

23rd July 2018 – Tablet Magazine

Putin’s New Rules For the Golan Heights

Tony Badran

At his joint press conference with US President Donald Trump following the summit in Helsinki last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin made a revealing comment about his intentions towards Israel’s future on the Golan Heights. more...

19th July 2018 – The Hill

Treasury rightly clips wings of Iran’s Mahan Air

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Mahan Air, an Iranian commercial airline, plays an integral role in providing Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad with the manpower and weapons to fuel his atrocity-laden war effort. more...

18th July 2018 – Real Clear Defense

Putin Needs Iran in Syria

Alexandra N. Gutowski

Following their meeting in Helsinki, Donald Trump hailed Vladimir Putin as a potential partner in Syria, who can provide humanitarian relief and preserve Israeli security. more...

17th July 2018 – FDD's Policy Brief

No Deal on Syria for Trump and Putin

David Adesnik

Despite considerable speculation, President Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin did not appear to reach agreement on how to limit Iranian influence in Syria. more...

15th July 2018 – The Hill

Helsinki summit an opportunity to win Russia’s support for constraining Iran in Syria

John Hannah

Amid the specter of a possible Israeli strike against Iran, a top U.S. official and his Russian counterpart met one-on-one to address the Iranian threat. The year was 2010, and then Defense Secretary Robert Gates pressured his Russian counterpart to rescind military assistance to Tehran, specifically the promised delivery of the advanced S-300 air defense system. Ultimately, the Russians agreed to postpone their deal with Iran, essentially selling out their client. more...

13th July 2018 – Foreign Policy

Putin Sees Trump as an Easy Mark on Syria

John Hannah

As U.S. President Donald Trump approaches his July 16 summit in Helsinki with Russian President Vladimir Putin, there’s much speculation that Syria will be near the top of the agenda. more...

13th July 2018 – FDD's Long War Journal

Turkish-speaking jihadist group holds Assad loyalist captive in Latakia

Thomas Joscelyn

Shortly after Ansar al-Islam announced its responsibility for a successful raid against Bashar al-Assad’s forces in Latakia, another small jihadist group advertised its own participation. more...

11th July 2018 – FDD's Long War Journal

Ansar al-Islam raids Assad regime position in Latakia

Thomas Joscelyn

Ansar al-Islam, a small Sunni jihadist group, has claimed responsibility for a raid against Bashar al-Assad’s forces in Latakia province. The group released a set of photos documenting the raid, which took place yesterday in the Jabal Turkman (Turkmen Mountain) region. More than two dozen of Assad’s fighters were killed in the attack, according to multiple sources. more...

11th July 2018 – FDD's Long War Journal

Islamic State claims suicide attack on Syrian and Russian forces in southern Syria

Thomas Joscelyn

The Islamic State claimed a suicide bombing west of Daraa in southern Syrian yesterday, saying 50 men from the “Crusader Russian Forces” and “the Apostate Nusayri Army” (a derogatory reference to Bashar al Assad’s soldiers) were killed or wounded in the explosion. The so-called caliphate identified the “martyrdom-seeking” jihadist as “brother Abu al-Zubayr al-Ansari” and added an interesting note. Al-Ansari was dispatched by a new Islamic State “province,” Wilayah Hawran, which was apparently established to operate in southwestern Syria, near the Jordanian border. more...

11th July 2018 – FDD Research

Controlled Chaos: The Escalation of Conflict between Israel and Iran in War-Torn Syria

Jonathan Schanzer, Tony Badran

On the night of February 9, Iran dispatched an armed drone from Syria that penetrated Israeli airspace just south of the Golan Heights. Israel destroyed it with an Apache helicopter. more...

10th July 2018 – FDD's Long War Journal

Analysis: The Turkistan Islamic Party’s jihad in Syria

Thomas Joscelyn

On May 21, the Turkistan Islamic Party’s (TIP) arm in Syria released an hour-plus, documentary-style video encouraging Muslims in the West to emigrate for jihad. There is a deluge of jihadist-related content online these days, with much of it being redundant. But the production was noteworthy because the TIP, which is predominately comprised of ethnic Uighurs, framed its jihad as part of al Qaeda’s global struggle. more...

6th July 2018 – The Hill

US must renew sanction enforcement on Syria’s Assad

David Adesnik

Assad is reportedly bombing hospitals again. He understands there will be no American airstrikes if he resists the temptation to use chemical weapons. more...

3rd July 2018 – Foreign Podicy

Podcast: Syria’s World War

Clifford D. May, John Hannah, David Adesnik

Syria has been at war for seven long years. More than a half million people have been killed. More than 11 million – close to half Syria’s pre-war population – have been displaced either internally or as refugees in other countries. more...

3rd July 2018 – FDD's Long War Journal

Baghdadi’s son killed fighting Syrian and Russian forces, Islamic State says

Thomas Joscelyn

According to the text on the image, Hudhayfah al-Badri “was killed in an inghimasi operation against the Nusayriyyah and the Russians at the thermal power station in” the Homs province. “Nusayriyyah” is a derogatory reference to Bashar al Assad’s regime and its Alawite supporters. more...

2nd July 2018 – The Jerusalem Post

German intel: Iran wants to expand weapons into nuclear arsenal

Benjamin Weinthal

A German intelligence report from the state of Bavaria concluded the Islamic Republic of Iran is working to turn its conventional military weapons into a system for weapons of mass destruction. more...

29th June 2018 – FDD Policy Brief

U.S. Should Not Abandon Strategic Base Near Syrian Border

Alexandra N. Gutowski

The White House announced yesterday that President Trump will meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin next month in Helsinki, even though Russian airstrikes in southwest Syria are devastating areas inside the ceasefire zone that Trump and Putin endorsed last November. more...


Tony Badran

Research Fellow


9th June 2016 - 4:00 PM

Genocide by ISIS: The Plight of Yazidis in Iraq & Syria

When ISIS began attacking the Yazidi community in Iraq’s Sinjar Mountains in 2014, Ms. Dakhil brought international attention to the catastrophe through an impassioned parliamentary address, pleading for protection and assistance for a civilian population facing enslavement or execution.

13th May 2015 - 11:30 AM

Disputed Borders and the Struggle for Order: Addressing Security Threats in the Middle East

With continued Hezbollah activity emanating from Lebanon, Iran and the IRGC trying to set up a base of operations in the Golan Heights, the decline of the Assad regime in southern Syria, and rising tensions in the Sinai Peninsula, Israel's security situation has become increasingly complex and dangerous. What is the Israeli security outlook for the near and mid-term future?