• 2019-11-04

    Israel is bracing itself for war with Iranian proxies, as Tehran escalates its provocations. But what will the United States do if conflict comes?. By Michael Oren (Former Israeli Ambassador to the United States)

  • 2019-11-01

    With expanding competitors and severe domestic challenges, the time has come for Saudi Arabia to publicly engage Israel in order to confront shared opponents and protect mutual interests. ...

  • 2019-10-19

    The following document pertaining to the formation of “Greater Israel” constitutes the cornerstone of powerful Zionist factions within the current Netanyahu government,  the Likud party, as well as within the Israeli military and intelligence establishment.  ...

  • 2019-10-06

    Drip by drip, seeping out like the melting glaciers, are facts about the secret war for hearts and minds in the social media age. Every nation that can is doing it, and lying about it.

  • 2019-10-01

    The Center for International and Security Studies at Maryland (CISSM) has been conducting indepth surveys of Iranian public opinion on nuclear policy, regional security, economics, domestic politics, and other topics since the summer of 2014. Each survey includes a combination of trend-line questions, some going as far back as 2006, and new questions written to assess and inform current policy debates. This report covers findings from three surveys fielded in May, August, and early October 2019 to evaluate how the Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign is affecting public opinion in Iran. The United States withdrew from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in May 2018, and began re-imposing sanctions on Iran that the Obama administration had lifted under the terms of the 2015 agreement it had negotiated with Iran, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China. In the fall of 2018, it blacklisted hundreds of Iranian entities and threatened to impose secondary sanctions on anyone who did business with them. In spring of 2019, it tried to prevent Iran from getting any revenue from oil sales, its main export, by ending exemptions for key customers. In the summer of 2019, it tightened constraints on Iran’s access to the international financial system, including channels that had been used to pay for medicines and other humanitarian goods that were officially exempted from earlier sanctions. It also sanctioned Iran’s foreign minister, complicating his ability to interact with U.S. officials, experts, and media figures.

  • 2019-10-01

    The Donald Trump administration is working to push forward with a military alliance of Middle Eastern states as the international community looks to respond to a suspected Iranian attack on a Saudi oil facility.

  • 2019-10-01

    Despite significant limits on acceptable speech in Iran, national and elite debates can be vigorous. They often include voices from across the political spectrum of opinions permitted by the regime. Domestic debates on key issues play a critical role in framing, molding, and selling foreign and security policies. However, in the United States, the nuances of these debates are often lost in a busy news cycle and drowned out by the regime's bombastic rhetoric, which has come to define Iran's image over the past four decades. This October 2019 Perspective details how Iran's domestic debates affect key foreign policy and national security issues, including the country's posture on the international stage and vis-à-vis the United States. Understanding areas of both consensus and division among Iran's elite is critical to developing a realistic policy toward Iran, particularly during this time of growing tension with the United States. Areas of consensus among Iranian elites indicate regime redlines; disagreements among regime elites could offer opportunities in future negotiations involving Iran, the United States, and other members of the international community. Based on Iran's internal divisions, the areas that appear most conducive for compromise include the technical details of Iran's missile program, Iran's regional activities (particularly in countries deemed less essential to national security, such as Yemen), and increased transparency in the Iranian economy.

  • 2019-09-25

    The Gulf region is “on the edge of collapse”, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told world leaders on Wednesday at the annual high-level segment of the United Nations General Assembly, saying that “a single blunder can fuel a big fire”.

  • 2019-09-11

    President Donald Trump discussed easing sanctions on Iran to help secure a meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani later this month, prompting then-National Security Advisor John Bolton to argue forcefully against such a step, according to three people familiar with the matter. After an Oval Office meeting on Monday when the idea came up, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin voiced his support for the move as a way to restart negotiations with Iran, some of the people said. Later in the day, Trump decided to oust Bolton, whose departure was announced Tuesday.

  • 2019-09-06

    In July of 2017, the White House was at a crossroads on the question of Iran. President Trump had made a campaign pledge to leave the “terrible” nuclear deal that President Barack Obama negotiated with Tehran, but prominent members of Trump’s cabinet spent the early months of the administration pushing the mercurial president to negotiate a stronger agreement rather than scotch the deal entirely. Thus far, the forces for negotiation had prevailed. But counterforces were also at work. Stephen K. Bannon, then still an influential adviser to the president, turned to John Bolton to draw up a new Iran strategy that would, as its first act, abrogate the Iran deal. Bolton, a Fox News commentator and former ambassador to the United Nations, had no official role in the administration as of yet, but Bannon saw him as an outside voice that could stiffen Trump’s spine — a kind of back channel to the president who could convince Trump that his Iran policy was adrift.  As a top national security official in the George W. Bush administration, Bolton was one of the architects of regime change in Iraq. He had long called not just for withdrawing from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or J.C.P.O.A., as the 2015 nuclear deal was known, but also for overthrowing the Iranian regime that negotiated it. Earlier that July, he distilled his views on the matter in Paris, at an annual gathering in support of the fringe exile movement Mujahedeen Khalq, or the M.E.K., which itself had long called for regime change in Iran. Referring to the continuing policy review in Washington, he repeated his belief that the only sufficient American policy in Iran would be to change the Iranian government and whipped the crowd into a standing ovation by pledging that in two years, Iran’s leaders would be gone and that “we here will celebrate in Tehran.”