Analysis & Commentary


13th January 2017 - FDD Research

Should Boeing and Airbus sell planes to Iran Air?

Emanuele Ottolenghi

In January 2016, Airbus inked a deal to sell 118 planes to Iran Air, the Islamic Republic’s flag carrier, and in June of that year, Boeing announced it had reached a deal for the sale of 100 aircraft as well. In September, the U.S. Department of the Treasury issued initial export licenses...

12th January 2017 - Newsweek

Hezbollah’s Latest Conquest: Lebanon’s Cabinet

David Daoud

In late December, Lebanon’s parliament swore in a new cabinet dominated by Hezbollah and its partners in the pro-Syrian March 8 Alliance. For the Shiite group, this was a political victory even greater than the selection of its ally, former general Michel Aoun, for the presidency two...

11th January 2017 - Quoted by Carol Morello - The Washington Post

Iran nuclear deal is in the crosshairs and may not survive a Trump administration

Mark Dubowitz

The Iran nuclear deal was written with several “sunset” provisions setting expiration dates, some of them 15 years into the future, when restrictions on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program would lift.

11th January 2017 - 1320 WILS

The Capital City Recap with Michael Cohen

Behnam Ben Taleblu

FDD senior Iran analyst Behnam Ben Taleblu discusses the death of Rafsanjani, his legacy, and the future of Iran-US relations.

11th January 2017 - Quoted by Alex Lockie - Business Insider

How Iran made the US look weak with a tiny, outdated navy and some old ballistic missiles

Behnam Ben Taleblu

The news came out Monday that Iranian fast-attack craft had once again harassed US Navy ships in the Persian Gulf with unsafe and unprofessional behavior, forcing the USS Mahan to fire warning shots.

11th January 2017 - Quoted by Jamie Dettmer - Voice of America

Will Iran’s Alliance With Russia Last?

Boris Zilberman

At Tuesday's funeral in Tehran of Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, a key figure in the 1979 Islamic Revolution who later pushed for reconciliation with the West, reformist mourners not only chanted for the release of hunger-striking rights activists held in Iranian jails but also called for an end...

10th January 2017 - Quoted by The Tower

Iran Plans Military Spending Increase, Long-Range Missile Development

Saeed Ghasseminejad

Iranian parliamentarians voted on Monday to increase the country’s military spending to five percent of the budget and advance its development of long-range ballistic missiles.

10th January 2017 - FDD's Long War Journal

US adds 2 senior Hezbollah members to terrorism list

David Daoud

The US State Department listed Ali Da’amoush and Mustafa Mughniyeh, both members of Hezbollah’s senior leadership, as specially designated global terrorists today. The designation sanctions individuals who have either carried out terrorist attacks against the United States or who pose a...

10th January 2017 - Quoted by The Tower

Secret UN Report: Iran May Have Violated Arms Embargo, Sent Weapons to Hezbollah

In one of his final acts in office on December 30, outgoing United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon submitted a confidential report to the UN Security Council alleging that Iran may have violated an international arms embargo by smuggling weapons to the Lebanese terror group Hezbollah,...

9th January 2017 - The Washington Post

Iran’s Rafsanjani: A legacy of terrorism and repression behind a facade of moderation

Reuel Marc Gerecht

Shortly before his death, Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, Iran’s former president and clerical major domo, mused on the Holocaust. “For instance, it is said that six million Jews died. Later accounts reveal that although people died, many Jews were in hiding during those days; ‘the...

9th January 2017 - Syndicated

The John Batchelor Show

Michael Ledeen

FDD's Freedom Scholar Dr. Michael Ledeen discusses the warning shots from USS Mahan directed at Iran.

9th January 2017 - FDD Policy Brief

Rafsanjani: A Revolutionary, Not a Reformer

Behnam Ben Taleblu

Former Iranian President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani died of a heart attack Sunday at age 82. Often described as a “modern mullah” and “moderate voice,” Rafsanjani was more a shrewd survivor and political operative than champion of reform, let alone democracy. His career was...

9th January 2017 - The Weekly Standard

The Death of Ali Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani, a Machiavellian Prince

Reuel Marc Gerecht

Last week Ali Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani, the principal architect of the Islamic Republic, died of a heart attack at 82. The former parliamentary speaker, two-term president, and chairman of various powerful bodies leaves behind a mixed political legacy.

9th January 2017 - FDD's Long War Journal

PMF deputy commander Muhandis details Hezbollah ops in Iraq

David Daoud

Abu Mahdi al Muhandis, the deputy commander of the Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), gave an in-depth interview last week with the pro-Iranian, pan-Arab satellite television channel Al Mayadeen, in which he confirmed the presence of Lebanese Hezbollah in Iraq. In the interview,...

9th January 2017 - Quoted by Jenna Lifhits - The Weekly Standard

The Myth of Rafsanjani

Reuel Marc Gerecht

Former Iranian president Ali Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani, a so-called Iranian moderate and pragmatist, died Sunday at 82.

9th January 2017 - Quoted by Adam Kredo - The Washington Free Beacon

Iran: U.S. Surrendered More Than $10 Billion in Gold, Cash, Assets

Behnam Ben Taleblu

The Obama administration has paid Iran more than $10 billion in gold, cash, and other assets since 2013, according to Iranian officials, who disclosed that the White House has been intentionally deflating the total amount paid to the Islamic Republic.

9th January 2017 - Quoted by Barney Breen-Portnoy - The Algemeiner

Nuclear Watchdog Group: Approval of Russian Shipment of Natural Uranium to Iran is ‘Reckless’

Behnam Ben Taleblu

The news that the US and five other world powers have approved a Russian shipment of 116 metric tons of natural uranium to Iran is “only likely to spark a greater backlash” by the new Congress and President-elect Donald Trump against the July 2015 nuclear agreement, a top official with...

9th January 2017 - Quoted by Oren Dorell - USA Today

ExxonMobil and Iran did business under secretary of State nominee Tillerson

Mark Dubowitz

ExxonMobil did business with Iran, Syria and Sudan through a European subsidiary while President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for secretary of State was a top executive of the oil giant and those countries were under U.S. sanctions as state sponsors of terrorism, Securities and Exchange...

8th January 2017 - Quoted by Carol Morello - The Washington Post

Iran’s former president, who was set to a key role in selecting next supreme leader, dies

Behnam Ben Taleblu

Former Iranian president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, one of the most influential figures in Iran since the Islamic revolution and a driving force for reform, has died at the age of 82 after suffering an apparent heart attack, state media reported Sunday.

8th January 2017 - Quoted by Ed Blanche - The Arab Weekly

Israel’s new ‘quantum leap’ strike jets challenge Iran

Patrick Megahan, Behnam Ben Taleblu

Israel recently took delivery of the first of 50 F-35I stealth fighters, considered the most advanced combat jet in the world, from the United States, an event that marks a new and po­tentially critical phase in the Jewish state’s dealings with Iran.

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