Russia Returns in Show of Force

January 12, 2017

Russia’s new foreign policy doctrine sees the return of military force.  In early December 2016, the Russian Federation published its new foreign policy doctrine. The previous update was in 2013, at the threshold of the Ukrainian crisis. Since then, it has been interesting to see how the...

The Failures of Aleppo Will Haunt Us All

December 23, 2016

People of Aleppo are suffering from a lack of political will to take decisive action among the world’s powerful countries. The fall of Aleppo, and the horrific bombing campaign that has including the targeting of schools and hospitals, has been compared with the atrocities of Srebrenica,...

The End of Nuclear Diplomacy Between Russia and US

October 25, 2016

A world without nuclear weapons seems as far removed now as during the 1980s. In 2000, Bill Clinton and Vladimir Putin signed a deal calling on both countries to reduce their stockpiles of weapons-grade plutonium. The deal, called the Plutonium Management and Disposition Agreement (PMDA), was...

The Last Gardener of Aleppo

September 01, 2016

A gardener who tended to Aleppo’s lost hopes of peace. Abu Al-Ward—Father of the Flowers—and his 13-year-old son Ibrahim have been running a garden center in the besieged Syrian city of Aleppo for the past five years. Among death and destruction, the sanctuary is a subtle defiance of the...

‪Agony in Aleppo: Inside Syria’s Al-Quds Hospital

June 15, 2016

A volunteer films doctors at work in a Syrian hospital. After 5 years of the Syrian conflict, we may think that we have seen it all—death, suffering, destruction. But it goes on, unabated, a daily routine for millions of people affected by the war’s brutality. This video from Channel 4...

Memories of Aleppo Will Not Be Forgotten

May 05, 2016

As the city burns, we must not forget that Aleppo was once a place of history, culture and diversity. In summer 2009, I embarked on one of the most amazing journeys of my life: a road trip from Istanbul to Damascus, roughly 1,500 kilometers. The journey took me to various Turkish cities,...

The Tribal Factor in Syria’s Rebellion

July 14, 2013

Armed tribal groups are active participants in Syria’s civil war. Tribalism remains a primary form of communal identity among Arab Sunnis across Syria, regardless of whether they live in rural or urban areas. As a...

Hezbollah’s Deeper Involvement in the Battle for Syria

June 28, 2013

The trauma suffered by Nubul and al-Zahraa residents is becoming a rallying cry for pro-Hezbollah Lebanese.  The question of Hezbollah’s involvement in the Syrian Civil War has become more intense following...

Humanitarian Aid: Far From a Feel-Good Workout

June 23, 2013

As the Syrian refugee crisis deepens, charitable trips have turned into publicity stunts. Despite aid convoys developing into an institutionalised process of our global charity sector, the increase in the number of humanitarian relief convoys sent out is not proportionate to their affectivity in...

Alwiya Ahfaad ar-Rasool: A Growing Force in the Syrian Armed Opposition

May 19, 2013

Alwiya Ahfaad ar-Rasool is a growing force against the al-Assad government in Syria. It is poised to become one of the most heavily observed and commonly cited fighting forces of the Syrian Civil War. Alwiya Ahfaad ar-Rasool (Brigades of the Descendants of the Prophet) is an increasingly powerful...

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