The House Hears Plea for More Humanitarian Aid to Syria

Posted by on May 27, 2014 in Blog
By Nora Chamma Summer Intern, 2014 Last Wednesday, members of Congress gathered for a subcommittee hearing on the humanitarian situation in war-stricken Syria. The hearing featured a number of panelists representing medical and refugee relief agencies, Mercy Corps, CARE, and Global Communities to name a few, working both in and outside Syria.
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On Syria, it’s Strategy over Tragedy

Posted by on February 07, 2014 in Blog

By Marc Sabbagh Spring Intern, 2014

With recent news that Secretary of State John Kerry may be searching for a new approach on Syria, coupled with his harsh critique of Syrian President Bashar al Assad’s use of barrel bombs against civilians, the dismal outcome of the Geneva II negotiations is becoming increasingly apparent. Nearly 1,900 Syrians were killed during the span of the recent talks and it was reported that the Syrian government is far behind schedule when it comes to surrendering their chemical weapons arsenal.

Kerry’s apparent change in tune...

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Syria: Enough Is Enough

Posted on January 27, 2014 in Washington Watch
I wish I could be optimistic about Geneva II, but I cannot. That it happened at all is good. But "good for what" remains unclear. Listening to the speeches at the opening session established quite convincingly that none of the participants were ready to deal with the reality of what has become the most horrific tragedy of this new century.
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Interesting Read: “Washington’s Long History in Syria”

Posted by on September 27, 2013 in Blog

We came across a very interesting article today from The National Interest about “Washington’s Long History in Syria.” The author, Ernesto J. Sanchez, writes an informative article arguing that before considering significant escalation of US intervention in Syria, lawmakers (and the general public for that matter) should take a hard look at history. Sanchez focuses on America’s role in Syria going back to the Cold War era when the CIA sponsored a military coup in 1949. The article details how a once benign relationship between the US and Syria deteriorated as Washington increasingly endeavored through...

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So Who Doesn’t Want a Political Solution in Syria?

Posted by on September 26, 2013 in Blog

By Marc Sabbagh Fall Intern, 2013

By the look of things, almost everyone in the international community wants a political solution to the crisis in Syria.

On Tuesday, President Obama reiterated his calls for a political solution at the United Nations General Assembly. President Hassan Rouhani of Iran made similar overtures hours later. A few days ago, Russian President Vladmir Putin announced that “the Collective Security Treaty Organization member states agree that the only solution to the Syrian crisis is through peaceful political settlement.”

Numerous world leaders can be heard making the same...

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The Price of Indecision on Syria

Posted by on September 13, 2013 in Blog
By Marc Sabbagh Fall Intern, 2013 For the past two weeks (if not longer), the international community has been hanging on tight, riding President Obama’s Syria rollercoaster. Everyone is strapped in: Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Russian President Vladimir Putin, the U.S. Congress, a skeptical American public, a divided Arab American community, and most tragically of all, Syrians and those in the region on the front lines of a terrible conflict.
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Why a Strike on Syria without Congressional Authorization is Illegal

Posted by on September 10, 2013 in Blog
At this point, it is unclear whether military action against Syria will be necessary in order to resolve the standoff over the Assad regime’s reportedly use of chemical weapons, given the alternative proposals apparently inadvertently suggested by Secretary of State John Kerry. What has become abundantly clear, however, is the lack of support the Obama Administration has over its proposed action, which was prompted by the chemical weapons attack last month that killed more than one thousand civilians.
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Congress’ Syria Proposals, Side by Side

Posted by on September 09, 2013 in Blog

By Isaac LeveyLegal Fellow

The likelihood that Congress will authorize American military intervention in Syria is rapidly diminishing. Almost no one disputes that chemical weapons were used in Syria, and few serious people (but some Members of Congress) doubt that President Bashar al-Assad was responsible. Yet there simply is not enough support, among the American people or their representatives in Congress, to get an authorization of military intervention through both houses of Congress. Some of this can be attributed to an isolationist “none-of-our-business” mindset: a desire to avoid yet another military...

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The Hill: Prominent pro-Israel group throws its weight behind Syria strikes

Posted by The Hill on September 06, 2013 in News Clips

A prominent pro-Israel group on Tuesday swung its considerable political influence behind President Obama’s call for military strikes against Syria.

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) broke its silence on the Syria question, issuing a statement that urged lawmakers to grant the president “the authority he has requested to protect America’s national security interests and dissuade the Syrian regime’s further use of unconventional weapons.”

“The civilized world cannot tolerate the use of these barbaric weapons, particularly against an innocent civilian population including hundreds of children. Simply put, barbarism on a mass scale must not be given a free pass,”...

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Syria Split Six Ways to Sunday

Posted on September 04, 2013 in Countdown
Fervor over a potential US strike on Syria has completely eclipsed continued unrest in Egypt. But as the most populous Arab state, Egypt and the attitudes of its people count, especially as the US potentially deepens its role in the region. A new Zogby Research poll on Egyptian Attitudes in the Post-Tamarrud, Post-Morsi Era, conducted in the second half of July 2013, shows that favorable ratings toward the US, Ambassador Anne Patterson, and President Obama are at 1%, 1%, and 3%, respectively. So what do these numbers tell us?
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