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Global Islamism Monitor - No. 4
Bulletins - May 1, 2015
 

In Georgia, a grassroots response to ISIS;
Unlikely allies in the Sinai;
Tackling education in Egypt;
Hamas gains in the West Bank;
The Islamic state's next casualty: The Taliban 

 
What We Don't Know About Iran Could Hurt Us
Articles - April 30, 2015
 

To hear the Obama administration tell it, the framework nuclear accord agreed to between the P5+1 powers and Iran last month in Lausanne, Switzerland is a good deal. The White House has pledged that the final agreement to be concluded in coming weeks, backed up by a robust monitoring and verification regime, will block Iran's pathways to a bomb for at least a decade - and perhaps considerably longer. 

 
Iran: Isolated No Longer
Articles - April 27, 2015
 

Less than a month after it was signed in Lausanne, Switzerland, the framework nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 powers is already beginning to pay dividends - for Iran, that is. 

Even before the April 2 accord, the enforced isolation that brought Iran's ayatollahs to the nuclear negotiating table back in 2013 had begun to erode, progressively undermined by hungry investors eager to return to "business as usual" with the Islamic Republic. But since the framework deal was signed, the floodgates have opened in earnest. 

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 156
Bulletins - April 24, 2015
 

Israel in the crosshairs;
The IRGC and the nuclear deal;
Iran's new project: "Ground Zero"
After Lausanne, new overtures from Russia;
...and China

 
Iran Is Already Winning
Articles - April 21, 2015
 

As global talks over Iran's nuclear program resume in Vienna this week, one can't help wonder whether, in a larger sense, the die of an Iranian regional, military and economic victory has already been cast. From Washington to Berlin, Moscow to Beijing, and many places in between, Iran's isolation is disappearing as governments and businesses prepare to exploit its return to global respectability. 

 
Global Islamism Monitor - No. 3
Bulletins - April 20, 2015
 

Targeting the Islamic State's antiquities trade;
Boko Haram's youngest victims;
The Islamic state's Ba'athist roots;
The Islam state and Russia 

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 155
Bulletins - April 13, 2015
 

Iran, P5+1 strike tentative nuclear deal...;
...but is there a meeting of the minds?;
Hedging on verification in Tehran;
Mixed reaction in the Middle East;

 

 
5 Reasons Iran Nuke Deal Fails
Articles - April 9, 2015
 

No sooner had the P5+1 powers and Iran announced on April 2 that they had agreed upon the framework of a nuclear deal than its supporters began to spin the results. To hear the boosters tell it, the preliminary agreement represents a victory for proponents of peace and a defeat for warmongers everywhere. That sort of simplistic rhetoric may play well on a political level, but there are real strategic reasons to be skeptical of the impending deal. 

 
Obama's Ill-Advised Gamble
Articles - April 7, 2015
 

Of the new framework accord with Iran over its nuclear program, President Barack Obama said he hopes "that we can conclude this diplomatic arrangement - and that it ushers a new era in U.S.-Iranian relations - and, just as importantly, over time, a new era in Iranian relations with its neighbors." 

 
Missile Defense Briefing Report - No. 335
Bulletins - April 1, 2015
 

New Indo-Israeli missile defense cooperation;
North Korea's missile progress unnerves U.S.;
Iran plays defense...;
...and offense;
Seoul examines its options;
In Poland, missile defense as a check on Russian agressions

 

 
Iran Is to Blame for the Palestinians' Plight
Articles - March 31, 2015
 

If you go by President Barack Obama's rhetoric, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has single-handedly sunk the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. The United States has been forced to "re-assess our options," the commander in chief has said, including supporting Israel at the United Nations, on the basis of Netanyahu's election-eve statement opposing a two-state solution.

 
Netanyahu's Win
Articles - March 21, 2015
 

The Israeli electorate has spoken. After a bitterly acrimonious political campaign, and an election on March 17th that saw the highest voter turnout (72.3 percent) in recent memory, Prime Minister Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu has received a reinvigorated mandate to govern. 

 
Netanyahu's Win
Articles - March 21, 2015
 

The Israeli electorate has spoken. After a bitterly acrimonious political campaign, and an election on March 17th that saw the highest voter turnout (72.3 percent) in recent memory, Prime Minister Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu has received a reinvigorated mandate to govern. 

 
Congress Must Derail Obama’s Iran Debacle
Articles - March 18, 2015
 

You wouldn't know it from the mainstream media, but President Obama has an Iran problem. His administration has wagered - and wagered big - on the idea of a nuclear deal with the Islamic Republic. But the effort is increasingly unpopular, and a hard sell among the American electorate. 

 
Relax about Republicans' letter to Iran
Articles - March 11, 2015
 

A firestorm erupted Tuesday over the letter by Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark. and 46 other Senators to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini, laying out their view of the ongoing negotiations regarding Iran's nuclear program. Critics of the letter started throwing around words like unprecedented, illegal, even treasonous.

 
Nuclear Musings
Articles - March 10, 2015
 

From today's diary entry of Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei: 

Ah, the Americans. When it comes to our nuclear weapons program, they leave us with only good choices! 

On the one hand, I can drag out the talks beyond this month's latest deadline because the desperate Americans certainly will agree to keep talking. That's how we went from the six-month interim deal in November 2013, through a deadline in July 2014, and then through another deadline in November 2014. 

 
Missile Defense Briefing Report - No. 334
Bulletins - March 9, 2015
 

 

New sensor blimp unnerves citizens;
Turkey goes its own way on missile defense;
Nuclear talks with Iran skirt its missiles;
North Korea now launching at sea;
A new Iranian-Russo missile deal

 

 

 
Don't Ignore Iran Dangers
Articles - February 27, 2015
 

Desperately pursuing a nuclear deal with Iran, scrapping old positions and offering new concessions at a mind-boggling pace, the Obama administration has lost sight of what this regime represents and why the United States and its allies have focused on its nuclear program to begin with. 

 
What Americans Really Think About Iran's Nukes
Articles - February 26, 2015
 

To hear the White House tell it, our nagging Iranian problem might soon be a thing of the past. As the March deadline for nuclear negotiations nears, administration officials and sympathetic onlookers have become increasingly optimistic about an impending breakthrough with the Islamic Republic over its atomic ambitions.

 
Obama's religious blindness aids Islamic State
Articles - February 19, 2015
 

Attempts to avoid touching on religious dimension of the struggle has led to several recent high-profile administration gaffes. President Obama strangely tried to deflect the issue at the National Prayer Breakfast on Feb. 5 by mentioning the Crusades as an example of Christian excess. Unfortunately, that example is also a key jihadist talking point.

 
Iran's Nuclear Weapons Fatwa Is a Myth
Articles - February 18, 2015
 

President Barack Obama said a nuclear deal with Iran is possible if Tehran truly considers nuclear weapons un-Islamic. But is this true? And does it matter?

 
The Only Thing Scarier Than Iran's Nukes
Articles - February 12, 2015
 

Denying Iran nuclear-weapons capability is not only a means of limiting the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. It is also part of a broader ideological struggle that Tehran is taking much more seriously than is the United States.

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 154
Bulletins - February 5, 2015
 

A helping hand against the Islamic state...;
...as Tehran draws a red line;
More fence-mending between Hamas, Iran;
Targeting the green movement, still;
The high price of journalism in Iran

 

 

 
The State Of The Union Is Great For Iran
Articles - January 21, 2015
 

The state of the union is great if you happen to be Iran. 

On Tuesday, during the State of the Union address, President Barack Obama discussed his view of the continuing controversy over Iran's nuclear program. "Our diplomacy is at work with respect to Iran," he said, "where, for the first time in a decade, we've halted the progress of its nuclear program and reduced its stockpile of nuclear material." 

 
Congress Should Act Against The Islamic State Group
Articles - January 6, 2015
 

One of the first orders of business for the new Congress may be to consider a resolution authorizing the use of force resolution in Operation Inherent Resolve, the U.S.-led combined joint mission against the Islamic State group. Such a move would be long overdue. 

 
Sony Hack Gives Cover To Iran
Articles - December 30, 2014
 

In the wake of the hacking of Sony, all eyes are now on North Korea's disruptive online capabilities. But the cyberwarfare potential of another rogue state — Iran — is also growing, and it could soon constitute a major threat to the United States and its allies. 

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 153
Bulletins - December 22, 2014
 

Iran's cyber threat, revisited;
Ahmadinejad's second act?;
Back to the territorial drawing board;
A new social ill: Shacking up;
Acid unnacountability

 

 

 
The Last Line Of Defense
Articles - December 16, 2014
 

As talks between U.S.-led global negotiators and Iran over its nuclear program resume this week in Geneva, the most welcome shift on the Iranian nuclear front may be occurring thousands of miles away in Washington. 

 
Troubling Signs From Tehran
Articles - December 10, 2014
 

Secretary of State John Kerry is confident that an agreement on Iran's nuclear program can be concluded in three to four months, or sooner. But maybe it will be later - or maybe not at all. 

 
Desperate And Dumb
Articles - November 11, 2014
 

Last month, President Barack Obama reportedly wrote a private letter to Iran's supreme leader, the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, seeking to tie the fight against the Islamic State group to the ongoing negotiations over Iran's nuclear program. The White House purportedly sought to pressure Iran into reaching an agreement by the November 24 diplomatic deadline by hinting that failing to do so would affect American efforts against the Islamic State group. 

 
Should We Be Worried About Iran's Moves In The Western Hemisphere?
Articles - October 31, 2014
 

Sometimes, it's difficult to see the forest for the trees. Optimism may currently be running high in Washington that next month's deadline for negotiations will yield some sort of durable deal over Iran's nuclear program. But amid all of the diplomatic euphoria, one aspect of the Iranian challenge has received remarkably short shrift: its expanding presence and activities in our own hemisphere. 

 
Is the Islamic State Islamic?
Articles - October 14, 2014
 

Nothing could be more curious to Muslims than Western non-Muslims telling them what their religion is about. Would not Christians find it odd to hear from Muslims what the true meaning of their religion is? Nevertheless, after almost every terrorist act against a Westerner, particularly the more gruesome ones like beheadings, Western heads of state reflexively react with protestations that such acts are absolutely un-Islamic, despite the explicit claims of their perpetrators that they are done precisely as religious acts, as they exultantly declare, “Allahu Akbar.”

 
Giving Iran The Store
Articles - October 7, 2014
 

Monday's reported explosion at Iran's secretive Parchin nuclear site - leaving two dead and shattering windows 12 kilometers away - is welcome news to those concerned about Tehran's nuclear progress, but it's likely a mere blip on what seems an increasingly smooth Iranian road to nuclear weaponry. 

For a host of reasons, Washington is growing ever-more desperate for a nuclear deal through which to claim a diplomatic victory, while Tehran is growing less concerned about the ultimate outcome of the ongoing talks and, not surprisingly, more intransigent about offering new concessions. 

 
Putting The Islamic State In Proper Context
Articles - September 17, 2014
 

Quite suddenly, all eyes are riveted on the Islamic State (IS). Ever since its self-proclaimed “emir,” Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, declared the creation of a new “caliphate” during a speech in Mosul, Iraq this June, his group has become global public enemy number one. 

 
Confronting The Evolving Peril In Islamic Extremism
Articles - September 11, 2014
 

What a difference a couple of months can make. This summer, the Bipartisan Policy Center released a new report from Thomas Kean and Lee Hamilton, the original co-chairmen of the 9/11 Commission. That study, titled "Today's Rising Terrorist Threat and the Danger to the United States," warned that America was running the risk of becoming a victim of its own counterterrorism success. 

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 150
Bulletins - August 12, 2014
 

Russia and Iran: Anti-sanctions synergy;
Iran's notorious image;
More demographic tinkering in Tehran;
Iran's play in Iraq

 

 
An Iranian-Turkish Reset
Articles - July 22, 2014
 

Earlier this summer, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani paid a very public two-day visit to a surprising locale: Ankara, Turkey. The June trip — the first of its kind in nearly 20 years — represented a significant evolution of the political ties between Iran and Turkey. 

 
Iran Won't Slow Down On Ballistic Missiles
Articles - July 18, 2014
 

With time for nuclear diplomacy between Iran and the P5+1 nations (the U.S., UK, Russia, China, France and Germany) running out, and with the White House scrambling to cobble together some sort of deal with Tehran, it's perhaps not surprising that Pentagon's latest annual assessment of Iran's military capabilities has so far garnered little attention, either within the Washington Beltway or outside it. 

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 149
Bulletins - June 19, 2014
 

Celebrating divorce in Tehran;
How Iran helped Assad get his groove back;
Shippers remain wary;
A new wrinkle in Iranian cyber-espionage

 

 

 
Rouhani's Republic Of Fear
Articles - May 22, 2014
 

Will the real Hassan Rouhani please stand up? Since his election last summer - and especially since the start of nuclear negotiations with the West last fall - Iran's new president has become a darling of the U.S. and European diplomatic set. The soft-spoken leader who now serves as Iran's political face is widely viewed as a "moderate" counterpoint to his firebrand predecessor, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, as well as a guarantor of a much-sought-after nuclear deal with the West.

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 148
Bulletins - May 19, 2014
 

Iran leads in misery;
An addicted government?;
A looming water crisis;
Food supplies, stuck in transit;
Iranian drones on the Syrian battlefield

 

 
Disclosure: Iran's New Diplomatic Weapon
Articles - May 5, 2014
 

Give the Iranian regime credit for creativity. In the midst of extensive nuclear negotiations with the West, officials in Tehran have apparently hit upon a new way to play for time.

 
Why Iran's Missiles Matter
Articles - April 24, 2014
 

In the current debate over the Iranian bomb, the White House is staying quiet about its concerns over the regime’s progress on missile development. It’s the dog that isn’t barking. 

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 147
Bulletins - April 17, 2014
 

Iran puts Hezbollah's house in order;
The controversy over Aboutalebi;
Iran fights the demographic future;
Iranian energy: Out of the box

 
Eurasia Security Watch - No. 314
Bulletins - April 15, 2014
 

Balloting aborted in Iraqi province;
Israel blames Palestinians for failed peace talks;
France wants to haul Syria before the ICC;
Hezbollah: Assad government is safe

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 146
Bulletins - April 3, 2014
 

The IRGC versus Rouhani;
Iran's ties with Hamas: Back on track
Iran's oil export surge;
Fear and loathing in Sana'a;
A tug-of-war over investment in Iran

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 145
Bulletins - March 11, 2014
 

Back to a "resistance" economy;
Back to business as usual with Beijing...;
...as Iran works to improve investment climate;
IAEA plays politics with Iran nuke data;
Iranian arms to Iraq;
New Iranian  weapons shipment to Gaza seized

 
The Disarmament Fallacy
Articles - March 4, 2014
 

The campaign to reach “global zero” — the elimination of all nuclear weapons worldwide — has become a cause celebre among an array of retired statesmen, as well as an important policy priority of President Obama himself. But this effort is handicapped by its adoption of several seriously wrong-headed assumptions, positions and ideas that U.S. media outlets have tended to swallow without careful scrutiny.

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No.144
Bulletins - February 13, 2014
 

And the economic winner is...Iran's supreme leader;
Targeting America on human rights;
The high cost of labor dissent;
Biting the hand that feeds;
New natural gas links to Moscow;
A Turkish-Iranian thaw

 
Bring the Iran Deal Into the Light
Articles - February 4, 2014
 

In his State of the Union address last week, President Obama threatened to veto any bill imposing new sanctions on Iran. “For the sake of our national security,” he said, “we must give diplomacy a chance to succeed.” But there is no way to know if diplomacy is succeeding if the terms of the deal with Iran are kept secret, and the mystery shrouding the agreement only encourages those seeking definitive action through sanctions.