Last month, Lebanon’s prime minister, Saad Hariri, resigned in Saudi Arabia — only to later rescind his resignation. This sparked fear of a Saudi-backed war against Hezbollah, Iran’s Lebanese ally. Riyadh has few local military assets to confront the Shiite movement but could strangle Lebanon’s small open economy. Lebanon is deeply reliant on capital inflows […]
Last Saturday, in a televised broadcast from Saudi Arabia, Lebanon’s prime minister unexpectedly resigned. Saad Hariri blamed Iran and Hezbollah for his decision and alluded to information about an assassination plot against him. His resignation ended a political compromise leading to the election of Michel Aoun as president after over two years of deadlock — […]
Iraq has made surprising gains in its effort to undermine or eliminate Kurdish autonomy since mid-October when we first visited this issue. Phillip Smyth joins me again to look at recent developments and the potential implications.
Phillip Smyth is a researcher at the University of Maryland who focuses on Iran-backed
On Sept. 27, thousands of Iranians attended the funeral of Mohsen Hojaji, an Iranian soldier who was captured and beheaded by the Islamic State. He was hardly the first Iranian casualty in Syria. As the head of Iran’s Martyrs Foundation announced a few months ago, the death toll among Iranian forces in the Syrian civil war has […]
Phillip joined me, with very short notice, to push out this look at the complexities surrounding the Kurdish drive for independence
President Trump’s decision not to certify Iranian compliance with “the spirit” of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), commonly known as the Iran nuclear deal, leaves the United States in a somewhat unexpected position. Trump effectively turned the JCPOA issue over to Congress to decide whether to reintroduce sanctions against Iran. Here’s the problem: […]
The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), signed in 2015 among the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, known as P5, plus Germany and Iran, significantly limited Iran’s nuclear program. At the time, some were critical of President Barack Obama’s diplomatic approach, rather than other coercive levers. Two years ago, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) […]
‘Tis a tale told by an idiot…
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This is not a treaty or an executive agreement but it is a really bad deal
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