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Analysis & Commentary - Emanuele Ottolenghi

Emanuele Ottolenghi's Latest Articles

13th April 2018 – Foreign Policy

Why Is Trump Going Soft on Hezbollah?

Emanuele Ottolenghi

On Saturday, Vice President Mike Pence is set to meet with regional leaders at the Summit of the Americas, where he should tell those assembled that it is time to launch a coordinated campaign against Hezbollah’s illicit empire in Latin America. (The Vice-President is stepping in for President Donald Trump, who abruptly cancelled his Latin America trip to oversee the U.S. response to Syria’s latest chemical attack outrage). But first, the White House has to show that it is prepared to take the lead by designating Hezbollah, a political and militant organization based in Lebanon, as a Transnational Criminal Organization under U.S. law. more...

2nd March 2018 – Foreign Policy

Trump Should Block Iran’s Air Corridor to Syria

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Last month, an Iranian drone reportedly violated Israeli airspace after taking off from a base in Syria. Israel shot it down and then launched a wave of retaliatory strikes against both Iranian installations in Syria and Syria’s own air defenses. Tehran’s brazen provocation may have been surprising, yet is a natural extension of Iranian efforts to transform Syria into a forward base for aggression against Israel. more...

23rd February 2018 – The Weekly Standard

The Mystery Martyr

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Death came suddenly for Samer Ibrahim Atoui, a 48-year-old native of the southern Lebanese village of Khiyam. On October 2, 2017, a Syrian opposition social media account posted photographs showing the burned-out wreckage of Atoui’s car, alongside Atoui’s picture and that of his fellow traveler, a known Hezbollah special force commander named Ali Al-Ashiq. Atoui was initially identified only as Abu Ali Jawad, his nom de guerre. The apparent cause of death was a drone strike. more...

19th January 2018 – Co-authored by Derek Maltz - Foreign Policy

It’s Time for the Justice Department to Hold Hezbollah Accountable

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Last month, a Politico investigation ignited a firestorm by charging that the Obama administration deliberately undermined Project Cassandra, an ambitious effort by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration to stop Hezbollah from trafficking drugs into the United States and Europe. Veterans of the Obama administration fired back, saying the charges were categorically false and politically motivated. more...

22nd December 2017 – The Hill

Get tough on Hezbollah, fix Obama’s mistake: Revive Project Cassandra

Emanuele Ottolenghi

One of the DEA's most successful strategies to combat the illicit drug trafficking of Hezbollah and its networks was Project Cassandra. A recent bombshell report revealed that the Obama Administration prevented these efforts from maturing in order to appease Iran into the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. The administration allowed Hezbollah's illicit activity, including both its terrorist activity and drug trafficking, to thrive. In his latest op-ed for The Hill, Emanuele Ottolenghi outlines the next steps to resolve the derailment of Project Cassandra and return to effectively countering Hezbollah. more...

11th December 2017 – The National Interest

Fix U.S. Airport Security Before It’s Too Late

Emanuele Ottolenghi

The same security flaws that allow drugs into the United States can be exploited by terror groups and may eventually lead to another 9/11-type mass terror attack. It is time to close that gap by focusing on illicit cargo with the same intensity that we do on dangerous passengers. more...

26th November 2017 – The Hill

Hezbollah drug trafficking should spur Trump to appoint DEA head

Emanuele Ottolenghi

The new DEA administrator should have a clear vision for addressing the international dimension of the drug crisis, as well as the wreckage at home. In particular, the president should choose a DEA chief who not only understands the complex and global nature of drug cartels but is also cognizant of the growing convergence between transnational organized crime and terrorist groups like Hezbollah. more...

4th October 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

Time to Designate Hezbollah as a Transnational Criminal Organization

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Intended to fight transnational organized crime, Executive Orders 13581 and 13773 lay out a clear policy that identifies the convergence between terror finance networks and transnational organized crime as a critical threat to our national security. Regardless, neither President Trump nor President Obama designated Hezbollah as a Transnational Criminal Organization (TCO). more...

11th September 2017 – The Jerusalem Post

Netanyahu’s Latin America Trip: Another Chance To Talk About Iran

Emanuele Ottolenghi, Michaela Frai

Netanyahu should prod Israel’s Latin American friends to combat the lawlessness and corruption that enable Hezbollah and Iran to thrive in the Western Hemisphere. more...

31st August 2017 – The Jewish Chronicle

The nuclear deal is on a knife-edge…but Iran is thriving

Emanuele Ottolenghi

The Iran nuclear deal, otherwise known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), that was implemented in January 2016 has emboldened Iran and given its leaders additional resources to pursue their regional hegemonic ambitions. more...

25th August 2017 – Entrevista por Jorge Sosa - El Cronista

Preocupación por el terrorismo: “La posibilidad de un ataque en Latinoamérica existe”

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Emanuele Ottolenghi, experto en seguridad, cuestiona la ideología del islamismo radical y advirte: "El terrorismo es un instrumento que el enemigo utiliza". Cinco claves del nuevo escenario internacional. more...

23rd August 2017 – Entrevista por Ramiro Pellet Lastra - La Nacion

Emanuele Ottolenghi: “En la era digital, la radicalización puede darse en dos meses”

Emanuele Ottolenghi

El investigador italiano apuntó contra los sitios web jihadistas y la influencia de figuras de autoridad como los imanes radicalizados more...

22nd August 2017 – The Hill

Trump’s Iran problem takes to the skies with Iran Air

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Iran Air planes have been used to transport extremist militants to and from Syria. The US cannot allow the Islamic Republic's airline to buy more planes from Boeing and Airbus with this going on. more...

4th August 2017 – RealClearDefense

Iran’s Top Export to Latin America: Radical Islam

Emanuele Ottolenghi, Michaela Frai

Ayatollah Mohsen Araki, who openly calls for the “annihilation of Zionism” and has promoted friendly relations with the Taliban, arrived in São Paulo, Brazil and discussed how Muslims can fight “radical terrorism”. more...

2nd August 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

Iran Ramps Up Purchases of Commercial Aircraft from U.S. and Europe

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Last June, a trio of Iranian airlines announced plans to purchase a total of 83 new planes from Airbus and Boeing. Iran Air Tours is ordering 45 planes from Airbus and Zagros Airlines is ordering 28 more. Qeshm Airlines, which is owned by Tehran’s Ministry of Oil, revealed it would purchase 10 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. more...

21st July 2017 – The Weekly Standard

The Iranian Express

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Tehran is using its airlines to transport fighters to Syria. It shouldn't be buying more planes from Airbus and Boeing. more...

11th June 2017 – The Hill

Hezbollah in Latin America is a threat the US cannot ignore

Emanuele Ottolenghi

The convergence of Iran-sponsored radical Islam with transnational organized crime in Latin America is a serious threat to the national security of the United States, especially in the tri-border area, or TBA, where Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay converge. more...

24th April 2017 – RealClearDefense

CEO of Iranian Airline to Buy Boeing Jets Has Ties to IRGC

Emanuele Ottolenghi, Saeed Ghasseminejad

Boeing announced last month it would sell 30 B737 Max aircraft to Aseman Airlines –Iran’s third-largest carrier – in a deal valued at around $3 billion. 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...

11th April 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

CEO of Iranian Airline to Buy Boeing Jets Has Ties to IRGC

Emanuele Ottolenghi, Saeed Ghasseminejad

Boeing announced last week it would sell 30 B737 Max aircraft to Aseman Airlines – a government-owned carrier that is Iran’s third-largest – in a deal valued at around $3 billion. The deal appears to be permitted under the 2015 nuclear agreement, which lifted U.S. sanctions against the Islamic Republic’s aviation sector. There is, however, a problem: Aseman’s CEO, Hossein Alaei, is a decades-long senior member of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, or IRGC, which remains under U.S. sanctions. more...