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  • Originally published 07/03/2014

    The Caliphate Fantasy

    "The problem with this new caliphate is that it is ahistorical, to say the least."

  • Originally published 07/02/2014

    The Acute Danger of Iraqi Dams

    It's been apparent at least since the American-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 that the Mosul Dam, Iraq's largest, could spell devastation for Iraq due to a combination of faulty construction, governmental indifference, and an ongoing civil insurrrection.

  • Originally published 07/02/2014

    Iraq Must Not Come Apart

    Such a rupture would ignite terrible slaughter inside the country and unsettle the Middle East as a whole.

  • Originally published 06/24/2014

    Fixing the world after Iraq

    How shall we effectively improve our chances for surviving and prospering on this endangered planet?

  • Originally published 06/19/2014

    Deconstructing The Iraq And Syria Conflicts

    The current escalating sectarian violence between the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and Iraqi forces and the unending civil war in Syria are now intertwined and neither can be resolved without the other, which requires a dramatic change in the political and military landscape in Syria and Iraq.

  • Originally published 06/18/2014

    Turkish Support for ISIS

    The Turks offered far more than an easy border crossing: they provided the bulk of ISIS' funds, logistics, training and arms.

  • Originally published 06/18/2014

    The Hour of ISIS Power: How Did It Come To This?

    No longer merely a terrorist organization, it has now formed a renegade military theocracy and is in the process of creating a new Sunni territorial state in the Middle East.

  • Originally published 06/17/2014

    7 Myths about the Radical Sunni Advance in Iraq

    Already in the past week and a half, many assertions are becoming commonplace in the inside-the-Beltway echo chamber about Iraq’s current crisis that are poorly grounded in knowledge of the country.

  • Originally published 07/22/2013

    Daniel Pipes: Islamism's Likely Doom

    Daniel Pipes (DanielPipes.org) is president of the Middle East Forum. © 2013 by Daniel Pipes. All rights reserved. As recently as 2012, it appeared that Islamists could overcome their many internal dissimilarities -- sectarian (Sunni, Shi'ite), political (monarchical, republican), tactical (political, violent), or attitudes toward modernity (Salafi, Muslim Brotherhood) -- and cooperate. In Tunisia, for example, Salafis and the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) types found common ground. Differences between all these groups were real but secondary, as I put it then, because "all Islamists pull in the same direction, toward the full and severe application of Islamic law (the Shari'a)."

  • Originally published 06/16/2013

    Top Ten Conclusions from Iran’s Election

    Those who believed that Khamenei would try to fix this election for Jalili as he is accused by the Green ovement of doing four years ago were mistaken. 

  • Originally published 06/13/2013

    Netanyahu warns of another Holocaust

    WARSAW, Poland — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu began his two-day visit to Poland, which Germany’s Nazis occupied during World War II and where they committed the worst crimes ever against the Jewish people, with a stern warning about a potential Holocaust from Iran.Netanyahu said Wednesday the upcoming “so-called” Iranian presidential election will “change nothing” in the Islamic republic’s quest for nuclear weapons and that the regime will continue to pursue a bomb aimed at destroying Israel. Iran insists its uranium enrichment program has only peaceful goals.Iran’s election overseers have approved a list of would-be hopefuls, most of them loyalists favored by both the theocracy and the military, and any future president will likely side with the supreme leadership’s nuclear aspirations....

  • Originally published 05/13/2013

    Nuclear Terror in the Middle East

    Credit: Wiki Commons.In those first minutes, they’ll be stunned. Eyes fixed in a thousand-yard stare, nerve endings numbed. They’ll just stand there. Soon, you’ll notice that they are holding their arms out at a 45-degree angle. Your eyes will be drawn to their hands and you’ll think you mind is playing tricks. But it won’t be. Their fingers will start to resemble stalactites, seeming to melt toward the ground. And it won’t be long until the screaming begins. Shrieking. Moaning. Tens of thousands of victims at once. They’ll be standing amid a sea of shattered concrete and glass, a wasteland punctuated by the shells of buildings, orphaned walls, stairways leading nowhere.This could be Tehran, or what’s left of it, just after an Israeli nuclear strike.

  • Originally published 02/27/2013

    Sasanian palatial house discovered in Lorestan

    During the second season of archaeological research in western Iran, Iranian archaeologists have discovered the ruins of a Sasanian palatial building. The ancient building is located in the area called Guri Fortress (Dež-e Gūri) near Zir Tang-e Siyāb of the district of Konāni, 70 kilometres southwest of the city Kūhdasht, in the western Iranian province of Lorestan. The director of the dig is archaeologist Atta Hassanpur. The discovered structure which is speculated to date to around 600 CE is described as having five interconnected halls, two columned halls and a courtyard....

  • Originally published 02/26/2013

    Iranians: 'Argo' "anti-Iran"

    ...That perception was re-enforced by the surprise presenter of the award, Michelle Obama. Fars News, Iran’s main hardline outlet, wasted no time in questioning her role, writing, “In a rare occasion in Oscar history, the First Lady announced the winner for Best Picture for the anti-Iran Film ‘Argo,’ which is produced by the Zionist company Warner Bros.”...

  • Originally published 01/25/2013

    Obama’s Inaugural and the Danger of an Iran War

    President Obama, Air Force chief of staff General Mark A. Welsh III, and Vice President Joe Biden talk during the inauguration. Credit: Flickr/DoD.Originally posted on Informed Comment.President Obama addressed the big issues of war and peace in his inaugural address, and despite the vagueness of some of his pronouncements, they contain strong clues to his foreign policy agenda in the Middle East. His announced policy will be one of ending U.S. military engagements abroad, multilateral cooperation with allies to face security challenges, negotiation, and avoidance of further military entanglements in the Middle East. In other words, Syrians are on their own, France can have Mali, and Iran is probably not going to be bombed.

  • Originally published 01/09/2013

    Using Cold War Tactics to Confront Iran

    Credit: Wiki Commons/HNN staff.As Americans seek to find an alternative to the stark and unappetizing choice of accepting Iran's rabid leadership having nuclear weapons or pre-emptively bombing its nuclear facilities, one analyst offers a credible third path. Interestingly, it's inspired by a long-ago policy toward a different foe -- the Reagan administration's ways of handling the Soviet Union -- yet this unlikely model offers a useful prototype.Abraham D. Sofaer, a former U.S. district judge and legal adviser to the State Department, now a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, argues in Taking On Iran: Strength, Diplomacy and the Iranian Threat (Hoover Institution, 2013) that since the fall of the shah during the Carter administration, Washington "has responded to Iranian aggression with ineffective sanctions and empty warnings and condemnations."

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