The Latest - Syria

Syria Latest

20th November 2014 – Business Insider

Obama Is Making His Middle East Allies Look Like Chumps

Tony Badran

Last week, CNN reported that President Barack Obama had asked his national security team for a review of the Syria policy. According to the report, the review is premised on the recognition that removing Bashar Assad from power is a necessary element in the strategy to defeat the Islamic State group (ISIS) in Syria. more...

16th November 2014 – The Long War Journal

Islamic State Releases New Execution Video, Purportedly Kills American

Thomas Joscelyn

The Islamic State, an al Qaeda offshoot that controls large portions of Iraq and Syria, has released a new video showing the mass beheadings of Syrian soldiers. The video also includes a scene purportedly showing the severed head of Peter Kassig, who was kidnapped in late 2013. Kassig is a former US Army Ranger who was serving as an aid worker in Syria at the time of his disappearance. more...

15th November 2014 – The Long War Journal

US Airstrike Targets al Qaeda in Syria

Bill Roggio, Thomas Joscelyn

The US targeted al Qaeda's network in Syria in one of the 20 airstrikes that took place between Nov. 12 and Nov. 14. While the US military has said the strike was carried out against al Qaeda's so-called Khorasan Group, the targets indicate that local infrastructure used by the Al Nusrah Front were hit. more...

14th November 2014 – NPR

All Things Considered

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross

FDD Senior Fellow Daveed Gartenstein-Ross explains the relationship between the Islamic State and al Qaeda amid reports that the groups have agreed to work together in Syria. more...

13th November 2014 – Quoted by Deb Riechmann - Associated Press

AP Sources: IS, al-Qaida Reach Accord in Syria

Thomas Joscelyn

Militant leaders from the Islamic State group and al-Qaida gathered at a farm house in northern Syria last week and agreed on a plan to stop fighting each other and work together against their opponents, a high-level Syrian opposition official and a rebel commander have told The Associated Press. more...

7th November 2014 – The Long War Journal

Analysis: CENTCOM Draws Misleading Line Between Al Nusrah Front and Khorasan Group

Bill Roggio, Thomas Joscelyn

CENTCOM denied that the five airstrikes on Nov. 5 targeted "the Nusrah Front as a whole" but instead were directed at the Khorasan Group. This is a distinction without difference, as the Khorasan Group is part of the Al Nusrah Front. more...

7th November 2014 – The Long War Journal

3 New Jihadist Training Camps Identified in Syria

Bill Roggio

Training camps run by the Al Nusrah Front, the Khorasan Group, and a Chechen-led group, Khalifat Jamaat, were identified in Syria. The Long War Journal has identified 42 jihadist training camps in Iraq and Syria. more...

6th November 2014 – The Long War Journal

Al Nusrah Front Tweets Photos Allegedly Showing Aftermath of Coalition Airstrikes

Thomas Joscelyn

The Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda's official branch in Syria, has tweeted a series of photos purportedly showing the aftermath of the US-led coalition's airstrikes in Idlib. Prior to today, the coalition had not announced any airstrikes against Al Nusrah since the first day of the bombing campaign in Syria. more...

6th November 2014 – Quoted by Shane Harris, Jamie Dettmer - The Daily Beast

Spies Warned White House: Don’t Hit Al Qaeda in Syria

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross

It’s the clearest signal yet that the U.S.-led military campaign in Syria is widening: American warplanes on Thursday struck at al Qaeda-affiliated jihadists who attacked two groups of Western-backed rebels—fighters that the Obama administration is counting on to battle ISIS. more...

4th November 2014 – Standpoint

The West Must Back the Kurds

Emanuele Ottolenghi

As Mesopotamia's boundaries are being redrawn in a bloody turmoil that is changing the regional balance of power, there is one obvious thing that Western nations should do to preserve their interests. more...

3rd November 2014 – Cited by Haaretz

Wanted: ISIS Seeking Manager for its New Oil Refineries, Paying $225k

The Islamic State is seeking "ideologically suitable" oil industry experts to help run oil fields and refineries it has seized in Iraq and Syria. more...

1st November 2014 – The Long War Journal

Al Nusrah Front Forces Western-Backed Rebel Group to Flee Base in Idlib

Thomas Joscelyn

The Al Nusrah Front has forced the leader of the Western-backed Syrian Revolutionaries' Front, Jamal Maarouf, to flee his base of operations in Idlib. more...

29th October 2014 – Quoted by Deb Riechmann and Bassem Mroue - Associated Press

Analysts: IS Ignores al-Qaida’s Call to Reunite to Fight West, but Their Feud Has Tapered Off

Thomas Joscelyn

Al-Qaida is using U.S. airstrikes in Syria as a reason to extend olive branches to the renegade Islamic State group, saying the two should stop feuding and join forces to attack Western targets — a reunification that intelligence analysts say would allow al-Qaida to capitalize on the younger group's ruthless advance across the region. more...

29th October 2014 – The Long War Journal

Al Nusrah Front Offensive in Idlib Targets Assad Regime, Fellow Rebels

Thomas Joscelyn

The Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda's official branch in Syria, has captured several towns and villages in the countryside of Idlib. The territory was controlled by the Syrian Revolutionaries Front (SRF), which has been allied with Al Nusrah despite being part of the Free Syrian Army. more...

28th October 2014 – Quoted by Zack Beauchamp - Vox

A Month Ago, ISIS’s Advance Looked Unstoppable. Now It’s Been Stopped.

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross

Watching the news, you could be forgiven for thinking that ISIS is an unstoppable juggernaut, sweeping Iraq and Syria in an unending, unstoppable, terrible blitzkrieg. more...

27th October 2014 – Syndicated

The John Batchelor Show

Bill Roggio, Thomas Joscelyn

FDD Senior Fellows Bill Roggio and Thomas Joscelyn chat with John Batchelor about their latest pieces for the Long War Journal. more...

24th October 2014 – The Long War Journal

Jihadist Training Camps Proliferate in Iraq and Syria

Bill Roggio

More than 30 training camps have been established by the Islamic State, al Qaeda, and allied jihadist groups in both Iraq and Syria since 2012. more...

20th October 2014 – Fox Business Network

Cavuto

Clifford D. May

FDD President Clifford May reveals that US humanitarian aid could be going to the Islamic State. more...

19th October 2014 – Quoted by Jamie Dettmer - The Daily Beast

U.S. Humanitarian Aid Going to ISIS

Jonathan Schanzer

Not only are foodstuffs, medical supplies—even clinics—going to ISIS, the distribution networks are paying ISIS ‘taxes’ and putting ISIS people on their payrolls. more...

16th October 2014 – CBC

Power & Politics

Clifford D. May

FDD President Clifford May comments on the Islamic State's continued advance. more...

Experts

Mark Dubowitz

Executive Director

Jonathan Schanzer

Vice President for Research

John Hannah

Senior Counselor

Tony Badran

Research Fellow, Levant

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Senior Fellow

Reuel Marc Gerecht

Senior Fellow

cia, iran, iraq

Toby Dershowitz

Vice President, Government Relations and Strategy

Events

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?

7th February 2014 - 12:00 PM

The Levant Unraveling: How the Crisis in Syria is Impacting the Region

A Conversation with Jonathan Spyer, Tony Badran, Michael Doran, Oubai Shahbandar and John Hannah

How has Assad’s strategy evolved? With various factions and stakeholders pitted against each other, how are the competing endgames and tactics of groups like ISIS and Nusra impacting the dynamic of the conflict? How are the reverberations from the ever-bloodier conflict in Syria being felt far beyond its borders in Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan and the Palestinian territories? What will the Montreux talks mean for Syria and the path forward for the international community? How are Iran and Hezbollah influencing the conflict and altering the situation on the ground? What is the way forward?