Ilan Berman
Ilan Berman
Home  |  Bio  |  Mobile Site
Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review

Latest Articles

Strategic Priorities For The Next President

Winter 2016  •  inFocus Quarterly

The next American president will inherit a world on fire. Whoever ends up winning the presidential election in the Fall of 2016 will enter the Oval Office facing a range of pressing - and difficult - global problems. How he or she will address them will determine America's place in the world for much of the decade to come. As such, it's worth examining what the future commander-in-chief will be forced to contend with on the world stage.

Continue to the full article  |  More articles


The Kremlin's Selective Counterterrorism

January 27, 2016  •  National Review Online

To hear President Vladimir Putin tell it, his government is the proverbial tip of the spear in the global war on terror. For months, Kremlin officials have taken great pains to style their intervention in Syria in grandiose terms — not simply as a ploy to prop up a key strategic ally, but as a broader campaign against Islamic extremism. To hear them tell it, Russia has been forced to lead because of Western fecklessness in the face of gathering Islamic radicalism. Yet this bluster belies the fact that Moscow's counterterrorism policy is both flawed and selective in the extreme.

Continue to the full article  |  More articles


Iran's Perilous Nuclear Lesson For North Korea

January 13, 2016  •  The National Interest

North Korea made international news last week when it declared that it had successfully carried out an underground test of a hydrogen bomb. The announcement touched off fevered speculation in Washington about the nature of the test itself (among other things, the yield is believed to have been to small to have been a thermonuclear device), as well as its larger geopolitical significance. Largely neglected, however, has been the likelihood that Pyongyang's latest nuclear test—whatever its specifications and objective—was informed in no small part by the recent nuclear deal between Iran and the West. That's because the DPRK, a longtime strategic partner of Iran, has watched the latter's skillful nuclear diplomacy closely, and gained a healthy appreciation of the enormous dividends the Islamic Republic stands to gain as a result.

Continue to the full article  |  More articles


Fallout Ploy
Iran's Cyberwarfare Contingency Plan

January 12, 2016  •  Foreign Affairs

Iran's cyberwarriors are back in action. Late last fall, The New York Times reported that Iranian hackers had carried out an extensive hack on U.S. State Department employees. Among the victims were U.S. diplomats working on the Middle East and on Iran specifically, who had their email compromised and their social media accounts infiltrated. The hack was the latest in what U.S. officials say are increasingly aggressive attempts to glean information about U.S. policies toward Iran in the wake of this summer's P5+1 nuclear deal. Iranian cyberwarfare is not new, of course. The past several years saw numerous and increasingly capable Iranian cyberattacks on Western and allied interests. Such strikes have receded in severity, frequency, and prominence as Iranian nuclear diplomacy has accelerated, culminating with the nuclear deal concluded in Vienna in July. Yet behind the scenes, Tehran has been quietly investing in the strength and capabilities of its cyber army.

Continue to the full article  |  More articles


Iran Goes Big And Bold

January 5, 2016  •  U.S. News & World Report

You have to give the Iranians credit for audacity. Having just negotiated a nuclear deal with the West overwhelmingly favorable to its interests, the Islamic Republic is wasting no time in pressing the diplomatic advantage still further. On the eve of the new year, lawmakers in Iran's parliament, or majles, introduced a bill demanding compensation from the United States for what they claim are "damages inflicted" to the Iranian people over the past four decades. "In order to redeem the rights of the Iranian nation, the Administration is obliged to take necessary legal measures on receiving compensations and damages from the American government" for its past actions, the draft legislation outlines. The list of Iran's grievances is extensive.

Continue to the full article  |  More articles

Books by Ilan Berman

Cover of Iran's Deadly Ambition Cover of Implosion Cover of Winning the Long War Cover of Tehran Rising

home   |   biography   |   articles   |   blog   |   media coverage   |   spoken   |   books   |   mailing list   |   mobile site