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Analysis & Commentary - Tony Badran

Tony Badran's Latest Articles

16th August 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Iranian Islands of Influence

Tony Badran

At a Pentagon news conference on Tuesday, US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said that Iran is building and training a militia to buttress the Assad regime in Syria. more...

9th August 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Washington’s Self-Defeating Policy

Tony Badran

In a steady stream of leaks and public statements in recent days, a number of US officials have offered a window into the Obama administration’s current thinking on Syria. more...

3rd August 2012 – NOW Lebanon

The Syrian Conflict’s New Phase

Tony Badran

It has become apparent that the areas held by Syrian president Bashar Assad’s forces are rapidly shrinking. As Assad concentrates his forces in Damascus and Aleppo, he is ceding territory elsewhere. more...

27th July 2012 – Foreign Policy


Tony Badran

How long will President Bashar al-Assad remain in Damascus? His regime appears to be reeling: A bombing last week claimed the lives of his brother-in-law and three other senior figures of his regime. more...

6th July 2012 – The Weekly Standard

Strategic Geography and the End of Assad

Tony Badran

The latest military developments in Syria are now generally understood as ushering in a new phase in the Syrian conflict. What’s less observed is that the minority Alawite regime’s mass killings of Sunnis and the intense fighting... more...

14th June 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Defensive Propaganda

Tony Badran

Of all the uprisings of the “Arab Spring,” the Syrian revolt has been the one arena where pro-regime information warfare has been a central element in the ongoing conflict. more...

7th June 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Assad’s Sectarian Strategy

Tony Badran

While the massacre of women and children in Houla last month has been rightly denounced by outsiders as a horrific act of brutality, few fully appreciate the cold-blooded calculus of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad... more...

31st May 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Staying on the Sidelines in Syria

Tony Badran

While the door-to-door massacre of women and children by pro-government militiamen in Houla last week has sparked international outrage and talk of a “tipping point” in Syria... more...

24th May 2012 – NOW Lebanon

The Failure to Admit Failure

Tony Badran

A recent article in the Washington Post has once again spurred speculation about a possible shift in the Obama administration’s Syria policy. more...

17th May 2012 – NOW Lebanon

US Not Thinking Syriously

Tony Badran

As the situation in Syria drags on, the international community remains opposed to intervention against the Assad regime. In the meantime, some in the US continue to pin hope on the emergence of a deus ex machina solution. more...

10th May 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Israel’s Unity Deal and Lebanon

Tony Badran

The surprise unity deal struck between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Kadima chairman Shaul Mofaz has spurred a flurry of speculation, including in the Arab media, about its ultimate significance. more...

3rd May 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Damascus via Moscow

Tony Badran

Despite its admission that the UN-backed Kofi Annan plan in Syria was failing, the Obama administration appears to have settled into the plan’s process. The administration’s backing of the plan has brought US policy back to where it was last fall. more...

26th April 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Russia’s Strategic Clarity in Syria

Tony Badran

Russian foreign policy scored another victory last week with the passage of UN Security Council Resolution 2043, which established a supervision mission in Syria for an initial 90-day period. more...

19th April 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Washington Washes Its Hands of Syria

Tony Badran

Following the fiasco of peace envoy Kofi Annan’s plan and the monitor mission to Syria, all eyes are on the White House to see what its response will be. more...

5th April 2012 – NOW Lebanon

US Willfully Blind on Syria

Tony Badran

Following the conclusion of the latest meeting of the Friends of the Syrian People in Istanbul last week, there has been speculation about a possible shift in US policy. However, the confusion that has plagued Washington’s thinking remains... more...

29th March 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Passivity and Incoherence on Syria

Tony Badran

Has the Obama administration abandoned its previously stated policy of regime change in Syria? Following the trajectory of Washington’s diplomatic choices, now culminating in the enthusiastic endorsement of Kofi Annan’s six point plan, it certainly seems so. more...

22nd March 2012 – NOW Lebanon

US Tells Turkey to Back Off Syria

Tony Badran

In a previously unreported turn of events, it has now come to light that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in her meeting with Turkey’s Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu last month, emphatically dismissed a number of forward leaning options on Syria... more...

15th March 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Obama’s Detachment Policy on Syria

Tony Badran

On Monday, the editor of the pan-Arab Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, Tariq al-Homayed, penned a column that delivered a scathing critique of the Obama administration’s Syria policy. The title of the piece said it all: “Obama is the problem, not just Russia.” more...

8th March 2012 – NOW Lebanon

Behind the Scenes on Syria

Tony Badran

Up until this week, the Obama administration had maintained an unequivocal posture against providing assistance to the armed Syrian opposition. To justify its position, the administration repeatedly cautioned that such assistance would only be “pouring fuel” on the fire... more...

5th March 2012 – Philadelphia Inquirer

Diplomacy Alone Won’t Topple Assad

Tony Badran

The yearlong uprising in Syria has presented the United States with an opportunity to deal a strategic blow to Iran's network of alliances in the Middle East. By ensuring the downfall of the regime of Bashar al-Assad, Washington would topple Iran's only Arab strategic ally of more than 30 years... more...