Middle East update: May 25 2017

SYRIA I don’t want to alarm anybody, but those American strikes on Syrian government-aligned forces near Tanf last week may not be the end of the conflict there. The map below is a week old in terms of who controls what, but I think it will do for our purposes. The Syrian army has reportedly… Continue reading Middle East update: May 25 2017

Middle East update: May 23 2017

Obviously the big news today is the aftermath of last night’s terrorist attack in Manchester. I’m trying to break these updates up into more manageable chunks, so you’ll find coverage of that story in another update. IRAQ The latest map from Iraq’s Ninewa Media Center suggests that the Mosul endgame is really upon us: Green… Continue reading Middle East update: May 23 2017

Middle East update: May 16-17 2017

TURKEY We’re going to start with a story about Turkey that didn’t happen in Turkey, or anywhere near Turkey. Rather, it happened in Washington, DC, on Tuesday: Supporters and opponents of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey engaged in a violent confrontation outside the Turkish ambassador’s residence in Washington on Tuesday night. Nine people were… Continue reading Middle East update: May 16-17 2017

Conflict update, April 26 2017

SYRIA UPDATE: The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights is reporting that there’s been an explosion and fire at Damascus International Airport. No cause has been suggested. As promised, the French government has produced proof that Bashar al-Assad’s government was behind the April 4 chemical weapons attack in Khan Shaykhun–and as expected, it’s somewhat less than meets… Continue reading Conflict update, April 26 2017

Conflict update: March 22 2017

I’m going to be out this evening, so please enjoy (?) this shortened and probably too-early roundup of the day’s worst news. UNITED KINGDOM This is still very much a developing story, but at least four people, including the attacker, have been killed in London in what seems to have been an attempted attack on… Continue reading Conflict update: March 22 2017

Conflict update: March 6 2017

DO OVER Donald Trump launched the world premiere of Muslim Ban, Episode 2: Attack of the Clods today, and, well, it hasn’t been struck down by a court yet so I guess that’s something. The revised travel ban removes Iraq from the list of proscribed nations altogether, so at least one country in which we… Continue reading Conflict update: March 6 2017

Conflict update: February 18-19 2017

Trumplandia Say, this seems nice: On any given weekend, you might catch President Trump’s son-in-law and top Mideast dealmaker, Jared Kushner, by the beachside soft-serve ice cream machine, or his reclusive chief strategist, Stephen K. Bannon, on the dining patio. If you are lucky, the president himself could stop by your table for a quick… Continue reading Conflict update: February 18-19 2017