Established by Fathi Ibrahim Bayoud 2005 - Homs

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Obama and Syria: a trail of half-steps, mixed messages

Obama and Syria: a trail of half-steps, mixed messages

As the Syrian civil war deepened and anti-government rebels struggled to unify their fractious forces, the White House early last year quietly convened an elite group of senior policymakers to advise President  Barack Obama . Their unusual mandate: think outside the box on how to...

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Has Egypt killed Syria?

Has Egypt killed Syria?

In the first two weeks of Ramadan, 1,262 Syrians were killed. The news didn’t make headlines and people were not agitated. This makes us wonder if what’s happening in Cairo killed the Syrian revolution or if the latter is fading into the background like what happened with Iraq after...

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Containing the Fire in Syria

Containing the Fire in Syria

The awful conflict in  Syria  grinds on, with more than 100,000 dead and no end in sight. The calls to "do something" - anything - become louder: arm the rebels, enforce a no-fly zone, send in the Marines. Before the  United States  acts, Americans should reflect on the...

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The Renewed Threat of Terrorism to Turkey

The Renewed Threat of Terrorism to Turkey

      For three decades, Turkey’s terrorist threat has been viewed largely through the lens of Kurdish militancy. Yet just as one front closes down,[1] a new hazard has emerged, primarily as a result of the current war in Syria. On May 11,...

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General Failure in Syria

General Failure in Syria

Without the Officers' Support, the Insurgents Can't Win Since the uprising began in Syria more than two years ago, a reported 90,000 people have died, millions have been displaced, and much of the country now lies in ruins. Nevertheless, the vast majority of Syrian leader Bashar...

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Egypt overthrown shakes Islamists in the region

Egypt overthrown shakes Islamists in the region

 The military's overthrow of Mohammed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood's fall from power in Egypt have sent Islamist parties around the region scrambling to preserve gains made in the Middle East and North Africa as a result of the Arab Spring uprisings. The stunning reversal has...

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The Syrian Revolution Is Not Dead

The Syrian Revolution Is Not Dead

The Syrian Revolution is not dead. It's alive and kicking but very different from the revolution of March 2011. Syrians talk about 3/2011 with fondness -- "the good old days" -- when the villagers faced government soldiers and protested with their voices and banners. They talk about the...

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Why Washington Should Welcome Iran Mediation on Syria

Why Washington Should Welcome Iran Mediation on Syria

This week marked another grim milestone in Syria’s ongoing civil war when the death toll topped 100,000. But as hopes for a peaceful resolution fade, a window of opportunity may have opened with the election of Iran’s new moderate leader, the cleric Hassan Rowhani. ...

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Inching Into Syria

Inching Into Syria

In the border towns where Syrian rebels recuperate and resupply, the buzz is that the long wait for Barack Obama may be near an end. The excitement is not the result of the White House announcement on June 13 that the United States will supply light weapons to the groups seeking to...

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Hezbollah's secret war on Syrian rebels

Hezbollah's secret war on Syrian rebels

The other night I spoke to Alaa al-Sheikh, the Free Syrian Army’s Khaled Bin Waleed Brigade in Rastan, a city that’s home about 25,000 people and lies on the main Damascus-Aleppo highway in the province of Homs. Over the last several months, Rastan has become the frontline in the war...

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Study: Hezbollah is it a Lebanese nationalist organization, or a group more interested in protecting Shiite interests

Study: Hezbollah is it a Lebanese nationalist organization, or a group more interested in protecting Shiite interests

Hezbollah is a Shiite Muslim political group in Lebanon with a militant wing the United States defines as a terrorist organization. With significant support from Iran and Syria, Hezbollah maintains an extensive security apparatus, political organization, and social services network in Lebanon,...

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 New book reveals how KGB operation seeded Muslim countries with anti-American, anti-Jewish propaganda during the 1970s, laying the groundwork for Islamist terrorism against U.S. and Israel

New book reveals how KGB operation seeded Muslim countries with anti-American, anti-Jewish propaganda during the 1970s, laying the groundwork for Islamist terrorism against U.S. and Israel

The highest-ranking Soviet-bloc intelligence officer ever to defect to the West claims in a new book that anti-American Islamic terrorism had its roots in a secret 1970s-era KGB plot to harm but the United States and Israel by seeding Muslim countries with carefully targeted propaganda. Yuri...

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Stumbling Into Syria

Stumbling Into Syria

When historians look back on the American path to war in Syria, two comments by President Obama will stand out. The first was his statement—repeated as a sort of sideline cheer for the Arab Spring—that “Assad must go.” This was a diplomatic error that could not be walked back: it...

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The crowning of the Syrian Islamic Front

The crowning of the Syrian Islamic Front

Hezbollah's victory in Syria in the Battle of Qusair was a wake up call for many pro-Islamist actors in the Arab world. In response, Qatar -- through  Yusef al-Qaradawi  and Al Jazeera as well as key Egyptian Islamic  leaders  -- has gone on the offensive. These players have...

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What Is Obama REALLY Doing in Syria?

What Is Obama REALLY Doing in Syria?

I'm in Oslo to give a seminar and a public lecture at the Norwegian Institute for Defense Studies, and I'm looking forward to hearing how world politics looks from a Nordic perspective. I haven't been to Norway since 2009, when my visit coincided with the Norwegian Nobel Committee's surprising...

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Democratic Senator: Obama Has ‘No Articulated Strategy' on Syria

Democratic Senator: Obama Has ‘No Articulated Strategy' on Syria

Frustrated by the  muddle that is  U.S. policy in Syria, a growing cadre of hawkish Democrats are putting pressure on the White House to finally outline to the public and to Congress its objectives in the protracted 2 ½ year civil war. The latest and perhaps most outspoken Democrat...

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You were wrong to support Hezbollah

You were wrong to support Hezbollah

Sheikh Hamad bin Jassem, Qatar’s prime minister and foreign affairs minister, is not the only one who said: We supported Hezbollah when it fought Israel but we are now against it because it’s fighting the Syrian people. Many are today justifying their past stances using this same excuse....

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America’s isolated stance on Syria

America’s isolated stance on Syria

American President Barack Obama’s  decision to provide the Syrian opposition with light arms and ammunition  is not considered a significant shift. It’s certainly not a strategic move either, but a limited tactical one that does not live up to the level of military escalation...

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Trump says he answered Mueller questions 'very easily'      Afghan official: Taliban target police checkpoint, killing 5      Egyptian sentenced to death for killing Christian doctor      Anti-Daesh coalition raids kill 36 civilians in east Syria: monitor      Trump: China wants to make a deal      C.I.A. Concludes That Saudi Crown Prince Ordered Khashoggi Killed      U.S. votes against U.N. censure of Israel over Occupied Golan Heights      Iraqi president to visit Iran on Saturday