Outside Publications

Outside Publications

Bibi the Bridge Burner

As word leaks out that the Obama administration is prepared to agree to a 10 year deal with Iran, after which Tehran could go full bore towards a nuclear capability, one must wonder what Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer, were thinking when they hatched a plan for the Israeli leader to address a joint session of Congress.

Defeating Lone-Wolf Terrorism

After the shooting in Copenhagen, police found a recording that made its way to the BBC.  The recording tells the story of our times. In it, a woman is talking about the virtues of free speech, even unpopular or impolite speech that challenges strict forms of Islam, when she is interrupted (cinematically) by the sound of gun shots. The last sound we hear is the clatter of chairs and shoes, the din of the free speech crowd fleeing for the exits.

Winning the Struggle Against Anti-Semitism in Europe

Though some in Europe remain in denial, the recent killings of Jews in Copenhagen and Paris epitomize the resurgence of anti-Semitism across the continent.

The Rise of Alien Warfare

In 2011, the United States launched a new television show in Afghanistan called Sesame Garden. It was an Afghan-themed version of Sesame Streetdesigned to win local hearts and minds. Unfortunately, the producers had to cut the Count von Count character because Afghans had not heard of Dracula and could not comprehend the fangs.

As Egypt Fires at ISIS, the U.S. Still Wants to Talk it Out

The beheading of 21 Egyptian Copts working or seeking work in Libya and held hostage by ISIS for the past month was in effect a declaration of war by the extremist group against Egypt.

Eastern Ukraine Has Parallels to Abkhazia

With the reported fall of the Ukrainian town of Debaltseve, the Minsk II ceasefire looks like little more than a Russian maneuver, one that chips away at Western unity.

Moaz al-Kasasbeh and ISIS’ Fatal Misjudgment

The turnaround is extraordinary.

I have only been in Amman for little more than two weeks, but it was very clear that there was a strong current of Jordanian public opinion opposed to Jordanian participation in Coalition air attacks against ISIS. That critical current had apparently been simmering here in Jordan for weeks in the wake of ISIS taking the Royal Jordanian Air Force pilot Lt. Moaz al-Kasasbeh prisoner when his jet crashed in Syria.

Countering ISIL’s Ideology: Keep It Limited, Focused, and in Tune with Lessons Learned

The rise of ISIL from the ashes of al Qaeda has also resulted in renewed calls to counter the ideology of violent extremism – a popular mantra chanted in the years after 9/11 that has gone through ebbs and flows based on the pace and magnitude of jihadist terror attacks. But any true examination of the past decade’s countering violent extremism programs should conclude that combating al Qaeda and now ISIL’s ideology would for the most part be a waste of time.

The Microsoft of Terrorism

If al Qaeda were a corporation today, it would be roughly equivalent to Microsoft: A big name but an aging brand, one now strikingly out of touch with the 18–35-year-old-demographic. The group made its way back into the headlines this past January, after its affiliate—al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP—took credit for a deadly attack on the Paris offices of the French magazineCharlie Hebdo.

Obama's Secret Iran Strategy

The president has long been criticized for his lack of strategic vision. But what if a strategy, centered on Iran, has been in place from the start and consistently followed to this day?