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

Latest Articles

Biden Is Backtracking On Syria

October 11, 2021  •  Newsweek

Whatever happened to America's Syria policy? These days, that's the question many in the Middle East are asking as they watch the Biden administration progressively disengage from what, over the past decade, has been the region's most intractable conflict. Over the past eight months, the new administration has progressively scaled down the U.S. commitment to isolating Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad or imposing costs on his brutal regime for its domestic abuses of power. Officially, of course, nothing has changed. White House officials continue to insist that U.S. policy remains the same, that the Assad regime is still an international pariah and that there are no plans for engagement with Damascus. Behind the scenes, however, observers say there's an unmistakable sense that a "creeping normalization" of Assad's government is taking shape.

Continue to the full article  |  More articles

 

Why An Israeli Military Option Against Iran Is Back On The Table

October 5, 2021  •  National Review

The most important message to come out of last week's United Nations General Assembly gathering in New York wasn'tAfrica's call for greater vaccine diplomacy, or a plea for the world body to get more engaged in Myanmar. Rather, it was that Israel, now under new management by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and his broad political coalition, is making serious contingency plans to move unilaterally against Iran, should it become necessary to do so. In his September 28 address before the U.N. General Assembly, Israel's new premier made it clear that the Jewish state continues to view the Islamic Republic's persistent nuclear ambitions as a truly existential danger — and that it is prepared to take military action on its own in order to thwart them if it feels it has no other choice.

Continue to the full article  |  More articles

 

What Morocco's Elections Mean

September 27, 2021  •  Al-Hurra Digital

When Moroccans went to the polls earlier this month to elect a new parliament, the result was a massive repudiation of Islamism – and a resounding affirmation of the North African nation's current geopolitical trajectory. The implications, for the Kingdom itself and for the role it plays in the greater Middle East, are liable to be far-reaching.

Continue to the full article  |  More articles

 

Riyadh Turns East

September 14, 2021  •  Newsweek

It's official: Saudi Arabia has begun to seek other suitors. Last month, in a move that passed largely unnoticed amid the unfolding debacle in Afghanistan, the House of Saud signed a new military cooperation agreement with Russia. The deal, inked on the sidelines of the International Military-Technical Forum near Moscow by Saudi Deputy Defense Minister Prince Khalid bin Salman and his Russian counterpart, Alexander Fomin, is aimed at developing joint military coordination between the two countries. While details of the agreement remain sparse, speculation abounds that it encompasses systems like unmanned aerial vehicles and military helicopters, which Riyadh needs to address its immediate security needs. On a broader level, however, the Saudi-Russian deal reflects a momentous strategic shift, as the kingdom adapts to the changes taking place in America's Mideast policy.

Continue to the full article  |  More articles

 

The Costs Of The Afghan Catastrophe

August 24, 2021  •  Al-Hurra Digital

By now, it's beyond question that the Biden administration's hasty, uncoordinated withdrawal from Afghanistan is nothing short of a debacle. The rapidity with which U.S. forces pulled back in recent weeks helped empower a surge on the part of the Taliban, with dramatic results, while the lack of proper contingency plans to evacuate – or even to protect – vulnerable civilians have led to tragic scenes of mayhem and ongoing disorder. Policymakers in Washington are now frantically scrambling to undo the damage. The measures they are employing – including airlifts of U.S. citizens and Afghan refugees and the coordination of international human rights policies – may end up having some effect. But the long-term consequences of the Administration's miscalculation are sure to reverberate for years to come. And while the true extent of the damage has yet to be tallied, it's already apparent that those costs will be measured in a number of concrete ways.

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