Analysis & Commentary


16th August 2017 - Seth J. Frantzman - The Jerusalem Post

‘Iran Building Missile Factory In Syria’

Jonathan Schanzer

Report showing construction is ‘significant development’ that poses dilemma for Israel’s response.

16th August 2017 - Quoted by The Tower

Report: Iran Smuggling Weapons to Syria in Violation of UN Resolution

Iran is shipping arms to Russia via a smuggling route into Syria, which would violate the terms of United Nations Security Council resolution 2231, which implemented the 2015 nuclear deal, according to Western intelligence agencies.

11th August 2017 - Quoted by Alex Rowell - The Daily Beast

Hezbollah Sucks the U.S. Into Its Own War on ISIS

Tony Badran

The Pentagon says it’s absolutely opposed to cooperation with terrorist-branded Hezbollah, but Hezbollah’s leader says the facts on the ground speak for themselves.

8th August 2017 - Quoted by Tim Hume and Nick Miriello - VICE News

Al Qaeda is Thriving in Syria’s Chaos

Thomas Joscelyn

In the shadow of ISIS’ barbaric rise in Syria and Iraq, another familiar terror group is experiencing a quiet renaissance: al Qaeda.

7th August 2017 - Quoted by Aymenn jawad Al-Tamimi - The American Spectator

Syria: Assessing the CIA Program

Thomas Joscelyn

There’s more to success in the region than assessing who’s “moderate” and who is not.

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...

4th August 2017 - FDD's Long War Journal

Australia disrupts ‘sophisticated’ plot directed by the Islamic State

Thomas Joscelyn

The Australian government has provided more details about a “sophisticated” Islamic State plot that was disrupted late last month.

3rd August 2017 - FDD Policy Brief

Russian Troops Deploy Near Syria-Israel Border

Alexandra N. Gutowski

In late July, Russia deployed four military police battalions to monitor a pair of safe zones in Syria, including a southwestern zone negotiated with the United States. The 5,500-km2 zone, roughly the size of Delaware, shares lengthy borders with both the Golan Heights and Jordan.

1st August 2017 - Quoted by Yochanan Visser - Western Journalism

ANALYSIS: Trump Was Right To Cut U.S. Support For Syrian Rebel Groups

Thomas Joscelyn

President Donald Trump has been harshly criticized over his decision to end military aid to the so-called anti-Assad “moderate” rebels in Syria, but new information about what led him to the controversial decision shows that “Trump got this one right,” The Weekly Standard said.

31st July 2017 - Quoted by MINA Report

Trump cut aid to jihadis after CIA backed group beheaded a child

Thomas Joscelyn

While we've carefully documented the dynamics in play behind Trump's decision to end the CIA's covert Syria program, as well as the corresponding fury this immediately unleashed among the usual hawkish DC policy wonks, new information on what specifically impacted the president's thinking...

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...

27th July 2017 - FDD's Long War Journal

US identifies Islamic State propagandists killed in airstrikes

Thomas Joscelyn

The US military released a statement today naming seven senior Islamic State “propagandists and facilitators” killed in airstrikes in Iraq and Syria this year.

25th July 2017 - Quoted by The Tower

Hezbollah, Backed by Lebanese Military, Claims Advances Near Syrian Border

The Shiite terrorist group Hezbollah recently claimed several victories against Sunni jihadists in the Lebanon-Syria border region, with the help of the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF).

23rd July 2017 - FDD's Long War Journal

State Department: Iran continues to host al Qaeda’s ‘core facilitation pipeline’

Thomas Joscelyn

Since July 2011, the US Treasury and State Departments have repeatedly stated that the Iranian regime allows al Qaeda to maintain a key facilitation network on its soil.

22nd July 2017 - Quoted by VOA Learning English

West Faces Long War with Islamic State Group

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross

“If they are in Raqqa, they’re gonna die in Raqqa.” Those are the words of Brett McGurk, the United States’ top representative to the coalition fighting the Islamic State (IS) group. Last month, McGurk spoke about IS forces in the northern Syrian city of Raqqa. He declared their...

22nd July 2017 - i24 News

Strictly Security

John Hannah

FDD Senior Counselor John Counselor John Hannah discusses the Syrian ceasefire being negotiated by the US and Russia on Strictly Security.

21st July 2017 - Quoted by Jenna Lifhits - The Weekly Standard

Graham: Ending Program to Arm Anti-Assad Rebels is ‘Capitulation to Russia’

Thomas Joscelyn

South Carolina senator Lindsey Graham on Thursday blasted the Trump administration's reported decision to cut a CIA program that trained and armed Syrian rebels fighting the Bashar al-Assad regime.

20th July 2017 - Quoted by Tim Hume - Vice News

Trump ends covert CIA program and puts Syria’s rebels in jeopardy

Thomas Joscelyn

President Trump’s decision to wind down a covert CIA program that had trained and equipped anti-regime Syrian rebels all but guarantees that Syrian President Bashar Assad will remain in power and leaves the fate of the rebels under a cloud, according to analysts.

20th July 2017 - Quoted by Hollie McKay - Fox News

Syria ceasefire brokered by US, Russia holding, but with flaws, ‘tricks’ in play

Tony Badran

The ceasefire brokered by the Putin and Trump administrations went into effect earlier this month and has – for the most part – brought peace to a small strip of war-torn southwestern Syria. But the accord is vulnerable.

20th July 2017 - FDD's Long War Journal

Hezbollah has ‘about 7,000 fighters’ in Syria, US says

Thomas Joscelyn

A newly released report by the State Department underscores the degree to which Iran and its terrorist proxies have expanded their footprint in Syria during the war.

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