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Syria

This category contains 157 posts

Assad and ISIS

A veteran journalist, Roy Gutman, has written a series of three articles for the Daily Beast with the suggestive titles, “Assad Henchman: Here’s How We Built ISIS” (part 1); “How Assad Staged Alqaeda Bombings” (part 2); and “How ISIS returned to Syria” (part 3). The gist of the series is that the Assad regime was complicit … Continue reading

The Geography of Small Places

Hello, everyone. This blog has been a little sleepy for the past year or so, as I’ve wrapped up the long-running book projects that have kept me so preoccupied. With those now off my desk, I thought I’d try turning the crank and seeing if everything still runs here the way it used to. Here’s … Continue reading

A Syrian Sea Change?

When Michael Young and Joshua Landis agree about the situation in Syria, it’s usually worth paying attention. The news is full of reports about rebel victories in Idlib and Jisr al-Shughur, and the clashes with Hizbullah in Qalamoun. Apparently, there are factions of Jabhat al-Nusra contemplating a break with Al-Qaeda, so as to make themselves more palatable to … Continue reading

A Puzzling Escalation in the Golan

The Syrian vortex has made strange bedfellows over the past year. The rise of the Islamic State had the effect of briefly putting everyone else on the same team, a federation of American fighter pilots, Hizbullah commandos, Syrian Army rank-and-file, and Iranian military strategists. Israel contributed the odd play, but mostly communicated its support for Team World in the language … Continue reading

Revisiting the Dystopia

Last year around this time, I spent an afternoon imagining what a worst-case scenario would look like for Lebanon in 2014. Here’s an excerpt to jog your memory: “As the year draws to a close, Lebanon exists in a state of low-intensity civil war. The Army has begun to fracture along sectarian lines. Saudi-bought French weaponry begins … Continue reading

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