Syria

Op-Ed

Obama's Bay of Pigs

Author: Micah Zenko
Foreign Policy

The U.S. plan to arm Syrian rebels to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria looks eerily similar to the infamous 1961 failed Bay of Pigs operation. Micah Zenko argues that a clarification of phase two—how the United States will support the armed rebels once they are trained and equipped—is needed before the United States proceeds.

See more in Syria; Defense Strategy; Conflict Assessment

Op-Ed

I Interviewed Bashar al-Assad About Syria's Civil War. He's Still Too Delusional to End it.

Author: Jonathan Tepperman
Washington Post

In recent weeks, Western governments have begun subtly shifting their positions on Syria. The Obama administration seems to have quietly dropped its demand that President Bashar al-Assad resign as a precondition of peace talks. Instead, reports suggest it has embraced proposals that would allow Assad to be part of an interim deal. The new approach implies that the White House and its allies believe that the Syrian president might be open to a compromise that could end his country’s four-year civil war.

See more in Syria; Conflict Assessment

Op-Ed

Is Kobani the New Khe Sanh?

Author: Max Boot
Commentary

The Obama administration will be tempted to take a victory lap because of recent news that Kurdish militiamen have regained control of Kobani, a Syrian town near the border with Turkey. ISIS forces that had been attacking it for months have melted away. This is, to be sure, a nice achievement, but its wider significance is limited.

See more in Syria; United States; Terrorist Organizations and Networks; Conflict Assessment

Foreign Affairs Article

An Army to Defeat

Author: Kenneth M. Pollack

Syria is a hard one. The arguments against the United States’ taking a more active role in ending the vicious three-year-old conflict there are almost perfectly balanced by those in favor of intervening, especially in the aftermath of the painful experiences of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

See more in Syria; Military Operations

Testimony

Next Steps for U.S. Foreign Policy on Syria and Iraq

Author: Elliott Abrams

Before the House Foreign Affairs Committee's Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa, CFR Senior Fellow Elliott Abrams details the United States' goals in Iraq and Syria: to alleviate the humanitarian and refugee crisis; to prevent an Iranian victory in Syria; and to strike devastating blows at the Islamic State.

See more in Iraq; Syria; Terrorism

Transcript

Assessing the Syrian Refugee Crisis

Speakers: Jeffrey Crisp and Rochelle Davis
Presider: Andrew Parasiliti

Jeffrey Crisp, senior director for policy and advocacy at Refugees International, and Rochelle Davis, associate professor of cultural anthropology at Georgetown University, join Andrew Parasiliti, director of the Center for Global Risk and Security at the RAND Corporation, to discuss the long-term welfare of Syrian refugees and the burden on host countries.

See more in Syria; Refugees and the Displaced

Video

Assessing the Syrian Refugee Crisis

Speakers: Jeffrey Crisp and Rochelle Davis
Presider: Andrew Parasiliti

Jeffrey Crisp, senior director for policy and advocacy at Refugees International, and Rochelle Davis, associate professor of cultural anthropology at Georgetown University, join Andrew Parasiliti, director of the Center for Global Risk and Security at the RAND Corporation, to discuss the long-term welfare of Syrian refugees and the burden on host countries.

See more in Syria; Refugees and the Displaced

Audio

Assessing the Syrian Refugee Crisis

Speakers: Jeffrey Crisp and Rochelle Davis
Presider: Andrew Parasiliti

Jeffrey Crisp, senior director for policy and advocacy at Refugees International, and Rochelle Davis, associate professor of cultural anthropology at Georgetown University, join Andrew Parasiliti, director of the Center for Global Risk and Security at the RAND Corporation, to discuss the long-term welfare of Syrian refugees and the burden on host countries.

See more in Syria; Refugees and the Displaced

Audio

Media Conference Call on the Threat of Foreign Fighters (Audio)

Speakers: Jytte Klausen and Jeremy Shapiro
Presider: Gideon Rose

Listen to Foreign Affairs contributors Jeremy Shapiro, former member of the U.S. State Department's policy planning staff and current fellow at the Brookings Institution, and Jytte Klausen, founder of the Western Jihadism Project, discuss the threat that foreign fighters returning from Iraq, Syria, and elsewhere pose to their home countries.

See more in Syria; Counterterrorism