Analysis & Commentary


22nd May 2018 - USA Today

Mike Pompeo’s Iran speech reveals detailed plan that will require resolve to implement

Clifford D. May

Two weeks ago, President Trump terminated America’s participation in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the deal his predecessor cut with Iran’s rulers. Since then the administration’s critics — and more than a few of its friends — have been asking: What will replace the...

22nd May 2018 - FDD Policy Brief

Iranian General Soleimani in Iraq as Post-Election Government Formation Talks Begin

Romany Shaker

Iranian Major General Qassem Soleimani visited Baghdad last week to begin building a pro-Tehran coalition following the Iraqi elections held on May 12.

22nd May 2018 - FDD Policy Brief

Security Forces Kill Three Protesters in Southern Iran as Demonstrations Continue

Tzvi Kahn

Protests in Iran have largely faded from Western news reporting, but not from the country’s streets, with more than 400 in April alone. Last week in the southern city of Kazeroon, police opened fire on demonstrators, reportedly leaving at least three people dead and dozens injured....

21st May 2018 - Co-authored by Ray Takeyh - Foreign Policy

The United States Finally Has an Aggressive Plan to Defang Iran

Mark Dubowitz

Ever since President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the Iran nuclear deal earlier this month, the commentariat has been aghast at the lack of a new plan. Critics said that the administration was all instinct and no insight, and that coercion without purpose was its only...

21st May 2018 - The Wall Street Journal

Iran, Get Ready for the Battle Rial

Mark Dubowitz, Richard Goldberg

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday presented the Islamic Republic of Iran with a stark choice: Either change or face “unprecedented financial pressure” in the form of “the strongest sanctions in history when we are complete.” The Trump administration has declared financial war...

21st May 2018 - FDD Research

Iran: The Shi’ite Imperial Power

Reuel Marc Gerecht

The sectarian wars in Iraq and Syria have fundamentally changed the Islamic Republic. They have become arenas for a new militant Shi’ite solidarity that has crossed the Arab Persian divide: Iranian-led, non-Iranian militias, thousands strong, now fight in foreign lands.

21st May 2018 - Co-authored by Brig. Gen. (Res.) Prof. Jacob Nagel - FDD Research Memo

Deal or No Deal, The IAEA Must Monitor Iran’s Nuclear Program

Olli Heinonen

Although the United States is withdrawing from the nuclear deal formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) retains both the right and the obligation to ensure the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear program.

21st May 2018 - The Hill

Mike Pompeo raises the bar for a deal with Iran

Behnam Ben Taleblu

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo went big — very big — in his speech at the Heritage Foundation Monday. Pompeo’s remarks were the first major statement of U.S. policy towards Iran following the U.S. withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear deal on May 8....

21st May 2018 - New York Post

Mike Pompeo just gave the Iran speech Kerry should have given

Jonathan Schanzer

In his first major speech as secretary of state — a searing 20-minute stemwinder — Mike Pompeo on Monday laid out the new US strategy toward Iran, following President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear agreement.

21st May 2018 - FDD's Long War Journal

CENTCOM releases some Yemen strike information, but gaps remain

Alexandra N. Gutowski, Bill Roggio

The US military has conducted 27 counterterrorism strikes in Yemen in 2018, but has only provided complete information on two. One of the strikes hit an AQAP training camp in Hadramout.

21st May 2018 - New York Daily News

Trump and Pompeo’s plan for Iran: It’s risky, but it has a chance of succeeding

Mark Dubowitz, Richard Goldberg

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivered a speech on Monday outlining President Trump's new strategy to counter the Islamic Republic of Iran: Intensify the Iranian regime's ongoing liquidity and political crisis to induce fundamental changes in behavior across a range of malign activities....

21st May 2018 - Real Clear Defense

Jordan Poised to Be Middle East Partner of Choice, but Must Improve Internal Security

Alexandra N. Gutowski

Jordanian troops parachute and fast-rope from a pair of Blackhawk helicopters, descending on insurgents as two of the Kingdom’s F-16s pass overhead—all for the benefit of dignitaries watching from the sidelines. Last week, Jordan hosted the Special Operations Forces Exhibition (SOFEX),...

20th May 2018 - FDD's Long War Journal

Taliban overruns second district in Ghazni

Bill Roggio

Security in Ghazni province has deteriorated rapidly over the past year. Of Ghazni's 19 districts, the Taliban control five and contest nine more, according to information compiled by FDD's Long War Journal. The provincial capital is threatened by the Taliban.

18th May 2018 - FDD's Long War Journal

Pentagon spokesperson doubles down on ‘desperate’ Taliban comment

Bill Roggio

Dana White also denied the Taliban has the initiative and touted the fact that all six Afghan Army corps are now on the offensive as a sign of success. Except all six army corps have been on the offensive since last fall, and security has continued to deteriorate.

18th May 2018 - FDD Policy Brief

Turkish Banker Sentenced for Iran Sanctions-Busting Scheme

Aykan Erdemir

A Manhattan court Wednesday sentenced Mehmet Hakan Atilla, deputy general manager of Turkey’s second-largest public lender, Halkbank, to 32 months in prison for his role in a multi-billion dollar scheme to evade U.S. sanctions on Iran.

17th May 2018 - The National Interest

In Korea, the Same Old Tricks from a Brand New Kim

Anthony Ruggiero, David Adesnik

North Korea long ago mastered the art of playing hard to get with American diplomats eager—or even desperate—to make a deal. Pyongyang’s sudden threatto cancel the June 12 summit in Singapore shows that Kim Jong-un has learned how to play the same games as his father and grandfather....

17th May 2018 - FDD's Long War Journal

Afghan military identifies 7 provincial capitals ‘under pressure’

Bill Roggio

The Ministry of Defense identified six of the seven provincial centers that are threatened by the Taliban as Farah City, Faizabad in Badakhshan, Tarin Kot in Uruzgan, Kunduz City, Maimana in Faryab, and Pul-i-Khumri in Baghlan. The seventh city is likely Ghazni City or Lashkar Gah.

17th May 2018 - FDD's Long War Journal

Taliban’s 2018 offensive encompasses all regions of Afghanistan

Bill Roggio

The Taliban appears to maintain the initiative throughout Afghanistan, while the Afghan military is forced to react to Taliban offensives, such as the latest incursion into Farah City.

17th May 2018 - The Jerusalem Post

Antisemitism czar slams German cartoon as ‘Nazi propaganda’

Benjamin Weinthal

The federal commissioner for combating antisemitism in Germany, Felix Klein, blasted Germany’s largest broadsheet paper Süddeutsche Zeitung (SZ) on Wednesday for publishing an antisemitic cartoon attacking Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israel’s 2018 winner of the Eurovision song...

17th May 2018 - New York Post

For Gaza’s suffering, blame Hamas

Jonathan Schanzer

Predictably, the recent unrest on the border separating Israel and the Gaza Strip has given way to a banal debate over the “desperation” of the people of Gaza.


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