The Latest - Syria

Syria Latest Articles

2nd June 2016 – FDD Press

Russian Hybrid Warfare: How to Confront a New Challenge to the West

Russian Hybrid Warfare: How to Confront a New Challenge to the West

Pasi Eronen

In 2013, General Valery Gerasimov, chief of Russia’s Armed Forces, publicly unveiled a fresh idea. In what came to be called the Gerasimov Doctrine,1 he described “new-generation” warfare – pre-emptive operations employing a mixture of nonmilitary and military measures to achieve political goals, deploying all elements of society. more...

1st June 2016 – The Washington Times

Putting Hezbollah ‘out of business’

Jonathan Schanzer

“After many years of sanctions targeting Hezbollah, today the group is in its worst financial shape in decades,” stated Adam Szubin, the acting Treasury undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence before a congressional hearing last week. “And I can assure you that, alongside our international partners, we are working hard to put them out of business.” more...

18th May 2016 – The Washington Times

A death in Damascus, a funeral in Beirut

Clifford D. May

Five years ago, during the hopefully named Arab Spring, Syrians staged peaceful protests against the ruling dynasty that had long oppressed them. President Bashar al Assad responded brutally: In May 2011, he sent tanks into the suburbs of Damascus, Deraa, Homs and other cities to crush his critics. Civil war followed. more...

13th May 2016 – FDD Policy Brief

Hezbollah Military Commander Killed in Syria

Tony Badran

Mustafa Badreddine, Hezbollah’s military commander, was killed in Syria on Thursday night according to Lebanese television channels close to Hezbollah. Al-Mayadeen TV claimed Badreddine was killed in an Israeli strike near Damascus airport, and eventually Hezbollah itself confirmed the news in a statement carried by al-Manar, the group's official channel. more...

9th May 2016 – The Long War Journal

Osama bin Laden’s son says jihad in Syria key to ‘liberate Palestine’

Thomas Joscelyn

Al Qaeda’s propaganda arm, As Sahab, has released a new message from Osama bin Laden’s son, Hamzah. more...

8th May 2016 – The Long War Journal

Ayman al Zawahiri discusses al Qaeda’s goal of building an Islamic emirate in Syria

Thomas Joscelyn

Al Qaeda has released a new audio message from Ayman al Zawahiri entitled, “Go Forth to the Levant.” Zawahiri is known for his long-winded lectures. By his standard, the new audio is mercifully short at just over ten minutes long. It was disseminated via social media yesterday. more...

6th May 2016 – The Long War Journal

Jaysh al Fath coalition launches new offensive in Aleppo province

Thomas Joscelyn

Jaysh al Fath (the “Army of Conquest”), a jihadist-led alliance of rebel groups, has launched a new offensive south of the Syrian city of Aleppo. The early fighting centered on the town of Khan Tuman, where a suicide bomber detonated a large vehicle borne improvised explosive device (VBIED) in an area controlled by fighters defending Bashar al Assad’s regime. more...

4th May 2016 – The Long War Journal

Assad regime and Islamic State battle for control of Shaer gas field in Homs

Thomas Joscelyn

The Islamic State and forces loyal to Bashar al Assad’s regime are battling for control of the Shaer gas field in Syria’s Homs province once again. The two sides have fought at Shaer and other nearby gas facilities on multiple occasions since 2014. more...

2nd May 2016 – The Long War Journal

Series of deadly operations named after fallen Islamic State leader

Thomas Joscelyn

The Islamic State has named a series of deadly attacks throughout Iraq and Syria in honor of one of its most senior leaders: Abu Ali al Anbari. Suicide bombers and other fighters have killed dozens of people since the campaign was launched on Apr. 30. more...

28th April 2016 – MilitaryEdge.org

Crowded Skies Over Syria Raise Risk of Unintended Clashes

John Cappello

Russian forces in Syria have fired upon Israel Air Force (IAF) aircraft on at least two different occasions, the Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth reported last week. Officials in Moscow unsurprisingly dismissed the report, but the possibility of Russian-Israeli clashes over Syria is actually more plausible than it may seem. more...

28th April 2016 – War on the Rocks

How the Islamic State’s Propaganda Feeds Into Its Global Expansion Efforts

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross

Even before the dramatic blitzkrieg the Islamic State launched through northern Iraq in June 2014, the group had been focused on expanding its presence beyond Syria and Iraq. The group has by now declared wilayats (provinces) in West Africa (Wilayat Ifriqiyah, the organization formerly known as Boko Haram), in the Caucasus region of Russia, and in countries throughout the Middle East and North Africa. more...

28th April 2016 – The Long War Journal

Al Qaeda-linked cleric leads new recruiting campaign for jihadists in Syria

Thomas Joscelyn

Sheikh Abdallah Muhammad al Muhaysini, one of the most influential jihadist ideologues in Syria, has launched a new recruiting campaign that aims to indoctrinate thousands of young men. The mobilization effort, named “Take Up Arms, Do Not Sit Still,” began online and throughout Syria on Apr. 20. more...

27th April 2016 – Tablet Magazine

Why Bashar al-Assad, the ‘Teflon Don’ of the Middle East, Can’t Be Touched

Tony Badran

John Gotti may have once held the title, but the late Gambino crime family boss had nothing on the “Teflon Don” of the Middle East, Bashar Assad. Had Gotti lived to see it, he would be astounded by how easily the two-bit head of a Syrian crime family is getting away with mass murder. more...

27th April 2016 – Jamestown Foundation

Recent Attacks Illuminate the Islamic State’s Europe Attack Network

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross

The recent major terrorist attacks in Paris and Brussels represent a watershed moment not just for the Islamic State (IS), but for the entire jihadist movement. more...

26th April 2016 – MilitaryEdge.org

The Saudi-Led Coalition Is Not Ready To Fight The Islamic State

Patrick Megahan

President Barack Obama and Defense Secretary Ashton Carter visited Saudi Arabia last week hoping to reassure nervous Gulf allies that American security commitments remain in force in the wake of last year’s Iran nuclear deal. In exchange, the White House was hoping to encourage the Gulf states to play a more active role in the fight against the Islamic State (IS). more...

25th April 2016 – Foreign Policy

It’s the Proliferation, Stupid

John Hannah

As the world prepares for a possible fifth nuclear weapons test by North Korea (and second since January), here’s something worth keeping in mind: The greatest threat we face from Kim Jong Un is probably not a suicidal attack against the United States or our allies in Northeast Asia with nuclear missiles. Rather, the more likely danger is that North Korea’s tyrant sells part of his ever-expanding nuclear arsenal to other rogue actors that mean us harm. more...

22nd April 2016 – The Long War Journal

Syrian jihadist group Sham al Islam appoints new leader

Bill Roggio

Harakat Sham al Islam, a Moroccan-founded group allied with al Qaeda and other Syrian jihadist organizations, appointed a new leader after its previous emir resigned due to “his health and work-related issues.” The jihadist group, founded by former Guantanamo Bay detainees, is listed by the US government as a specially designated global terrorist entity, and is known to operate a training camp in Syria. more...

8th April 2016 – The Long War Journal

US strikes al Qaeda’s ‘Khorasan Group’ in Syria

Thomas Joscelyn

The US struck senior al Qaeda leaders in Syria twice this week. “These airstrikes were focused on targeting key Al Qaeda leaders who pose a threat to the US, our allies and our national security interests,” CENTCOM announced today. CENTCOM added that the slain jihadists were “core” al Qaeda members. more...

7th April 2016 – FDD Policy Brief

Hezbollah’s Sunni Support Network

Tony Badran

Hezbollah announced the death this weekend of seven of its fighters in Syria during fighting in southern Aleppo. Among them was a curious name: 19-year old Muhammad al-Kabash, a Sunni from Sidon. more...

6th April 2016 – The Long War Journal

Al Nusrah Front confirms al Qaeda veteran killed in US airstrike

Thomas Joscelyn

Al Nusrah Front confirmed today that Abu Firas al Suri, a veteran jihadist who served al Qaeda since the 1980s, was killed in an American airstrike on Apr. 3. The group eulogized Abu Firas in a statement released online that was translated by the SITE Intelligence Group. more...

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Events

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?