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Analysis & Commentary - The Syria Project

The Syria Project Media Articles

8th November 2017 – Foreign Policy

Does Trump Realize That His New Iran Strategy Could Suffer a Fatal Blow in Syria?

John Hannah

Note to President Trump: The new Iran strategy that you announced just three weeks ago is hanging by a thread. Its fate will likely be decided in the next few months on the Syria-Iraq border. more...

27th September 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

Preventing a “Fait Accompli” in Syria

David Adesnik

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met with representatives of 17 like-minded nations to discuss the future of Syria last week on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. Following the meeting, Ambassador David Satterfield, acting assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs, said the U.S. and its partners were firmly opposed to “accepting a fait accompli” in which the Assad regime and its Iranian patrons consolidate their grip on Syria with the expected defeat of the Islamic State. more...

12th September 2017 – The Cipher Brief

Get Tough on Beirut to Rein in Hezbollah Threat

Tony Badran

Hezbollah – an Iran-backed militia that controls southern Lebanon – boasts a medium-sized army and a whopping arsenal of up to 150,000 rockets and missiles. Since 2011, much of that army has been engaged in Syria supporting the regime of Syrian President Bashar al Assad. While this has thinned Hezbollah’s ranks, it has also given the group valuable field experience and is opening up new routes of military supply to Iran. more...

8th September 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

The Assad Regime’s Chemical Weapons Problem

David Adesnik

Israeli warplanes struck a suspected chemical weapons facility yesterday morning in northwest Syria. Local observers said the airstrikes also targeted an adjacent military site where Iranian and Hezbollah personnel had previously been spotted. more...

21st August 2017 – FDD's Long War Journal

Analysis: The Syrian regime’s offensive towards Deir Ezzor

Alexandra N. Gutowski

A complete US withdrawal from Afghanistan would have been disastrous. The US government needs to drastically reassess America’s jihadist enemies and avoid the policy pitfalls of the past. more...

7th August 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

U.S.-Russian Cooperation in Syria Will Fail Without U.S. Leverage

David Adesnik

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson stated last week that the U.S. has “chosen the theater in Syria as a place in which we test our ability to work together” with the Russians. This strategy is at odds with two core objectives of U.S. policy toward Syria, as defined by Tillerson: the replacement of the Assad regime and the end of “the direct presence of Iranian military forces inside Syria,” including proxies. more...

28th July 2017 – The Weekly Standard

Trump Got This One Right

Thomas Joscelyn

Earlier this year, President Donald Trump was shown a disturbing video of Syrian rebels beheading a child near the city of Aleppo. It had caused a minor stir in the press as the fighters belonged to the Nour al-Din al-Zenki Movement, a group that had been supported by the CIA as part of its rebel aid program. more...

20th June 2017 – FDD's Long War Journal

US shoots down another Iranian UAV over Syria

Bill Roggio

arlier today, the US military shot down its second unmanned areal vehicle over Syria in the past two weeks. US Central Command (CENTCOM) said that the Iranian-made drone was shot down after it “displayed hostile intent and advanced on Coalition forces.” more...

16th May 2017 – Tablet Magazine

Assad’s Industrial Killing Machine

Tony Badran

On Monday, the State Department revealed that it possessed evidence that Syria’s Bashar al-Assad regime was operating an industrial crematorium at the Saydnaya military prison outside Damascus. Stuart Jones, acting assistant secretary for the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, said that the U.S. believes the Assad regime had practiced extrajudicial mass executions of thousands of prisoners. “We now believe that the Syrian regime has installed a crematorium in the Saydnaya prison complex which could dispose of detainees’ remains with little evidence,” he said. more...

16th May 2017 – The Jerusalem Post

German Neo-Nazi Party Builds Alliance with Assad and Hezbollah

Benjamin Weinthal

Stronger alliances are growing between the German neo-Nazi party Der Dritte Weg and the Assad regime, as well as the Syrian dictator’s strategic partner Hezbollah in Lebanon. more...

29th April 2017 – Newsweek

Russia Risks a Showdown with Israel Over Hezbollah in Syria

Jonathan Schanzer

Back in 1967, Moscow shrugged when Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser closed the Straits of Tiran, cutting shipping routes to the Israeli port of Eilat—Israel’s only one in the Red Sea. Egyptian and Syrian troop movements on the Israeli border — coupled with Nasser’s fiery rhetoric threatening mass slaughter — paved the way for war. All the while, Moscow fed the Egyptians and Syrians erroneous information about Israeli troop movements. more...

20th April 2017 – Fox News

Syria’s chemical program: Rubio ‘gravely concerned’ about Iran & Russia complicity

Benjamin Weinthal

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio told Fox News he’s “gravely concerned” about Iran’s role in helping Syria develop its chemical warfare program that ended up killing dozens of people weeks ago. more...

17th April 2017 – The Hill

Trump’s Syria strategy must target Assad’s chief protector: Iran

Emanuele Ottolenghi

The strikes ordered on April 6 by President Trump to respond to Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad’s chemical weapons attack helped restore America’s credibility in the region after years of retreat. more...

12th April 2017 – New York Daily News

We can’t punish Syria and ignore Iran: Assad’s allies have been complicit in his crimes

Benjamin Weinthal

The Iranian regime’s role in enabling Syrian dictator Bashar Assad’s chemical attacks on civilians last week has sadly been ignored, in part because of Tehran’s accurate assertion that its forces were themselves the victims of nerve agent warfare during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq War. more...

12th April 2017 – The Washington Times

The (limited) mission accomplished in Syria

Clifford D. May

If you’re still unsure about whether President Trump did the right thing when he launched 59 cruise missiles at Syria’s Shayrat air base last week, consider the alternative. more...

6th April 2017 – PJ Media

The Real War in ‘Syria’ and the Strategy for Long-Term Victory

Michael Ledeen

Of course I loathe Assad. And of course I despise the Obamans for that phony red line and the subsequent retreat-and-bogus-Russian-deal. But just carrying out vengeance against Assad isn’t good enough. It fails to address the central problem of our time: the global anti-American alliance. more...

18th February 2017 – The Cipher Brief

Syria: Options Remain If America is Willing to Take Them

Tony Badran

One of the biggest foreign policy challenges that President-elect Donald Trump will face is Syria. Here are how things look on the ground today and some of the scenarios the new American president may have to deal with. more...

8th February 2017 – Tablet Magazine

Assad’s Fundraiser at the World Bank

Tony Badran

For all the controversy surrounding it, there was one silver lining to President Trump’s now suspended executive order that barred nationals from seven Middle Eastern and African countries, including Syria, from entering the U.S.: It had kept an old associate of Bashar al-Assad from entering the United States and rattling the tin can on behalf of the Syrian butcher. more...

27th January 2017 – The Hill

Trump needs a new approach to Syria: Bottom-up defense

John Cappello

A draft executive order that awaits President Donald Trump’s signature directs the State Department and Pentagon to produce a plan, within 90 days, for providing safe zones in Syria. more...

23rd December 2016 – FDD Policy Brief

Treasury Sanctions Airline Ferrying Fighters for Assad

Emanuele Ottolenghi

The U.S. Treasury announced new Syria sanctions on Friday, including on Cham Wings, Syria’s second-largest carrier. Privately owned by businessman Issam Shammout, Cham Wings has been blacklisted by the Department of Commerce since 2011. more...

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