Syria’s alleged use of Chemical Weapons

 

 

 

The fighting in the North-western district of Idlib may turn out to be the last big battle in the Syrian civil war. In its determination to gain a final victory, the Assad regime has been accused of readying a chemical weapon strike, and there is an American commitment to punish Damascus if that happens.

To discuss these events, we are joined by…
1. Dr. Nir Boms – Research fellow, Moshe Dayan center at Tel Aviv University
2. Prof. Zeev Hanin, Expert on Russian and Middle Eastern Studies, Bar Ilan and Ariel Universities
3. TV7 Analist Paula Slier

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Lebanon’s political future – Jerusalem Studio 318

 

 

Lebanon is facing yet another significant event in its turbulent political history, with parliamentary elections one month away. Both domestic and external forces actively seek to influence results in their favor.
To further discuss Lebanon’s challenging future, I’m joined here in the studio by;
1. Lt. Col. Res. Reuven Ben Shalom – Cross-cultural analyst and columnist for the Jerusalem Post
2. Dr. Nir Boms – Research fellow, Moshe Dayan center at Tel Aviv University
3. Prof. Efraim Inbar; President of the Jerusalem Institute for strategic studies

TV7 Analyst: Mr. Amir Oren

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Syria’s New Map and New Actors: Challenges and Opportunities for Israel

Memo pic

The civil war underway in Syria since March 2011 has changed the Syrian nation beyond recognition, and the shockwaves caused by the war have made a very strong impact,  both  in the Middle East and beyond. Following four decades of relative stability, Syria has become an arena marked by internal, regional, and international conflict. The weakening of the central government in Damascus, along with the transformation of Syria into a battlefield featuring many actors with different and often conflicting interests, poses new challenges for Israel. In the uncertain reality marked by the multiplicity of hostile actors, there are also opportunities for Israel to strengthen and possibly forge ties with pragmatic Sunni opposition and minority groups with whom it shares specific interests. This memorandum surveys the main actors currently operating in Syria, especially in the southern portion of the country; analyzes their attitudes toward Israel; and formulates recommendations for a new, proactive Israeli policy in the dynamic Syrian arena. It proposes modes of military, political, economic, and humanitarian action likely to serve Israel’s strategic interests. Chief among these interests are the need to maintain tranquility on the Golan Heights and the need to prevent the entrenchment of “negative” players on the Syrian side. For the full report, click here.
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The Making of Lebanese Foreign Policy

The Making of Lebanese Foreign Policy:
Understanding the 2006 Hezbollah–Israeli War
by Henrietta Wilkins
(London: Routledge, 2013), 180 pages
 
Reviewed by Nir Boms for the Israeli Journal of Foreign Affairs
 
 
 
In August 2013, seven years after the end of the Second Lebanon War, air raid sirens were again sounded in northern  Israel. Four missiles fired from Lebanese territory struck residential areas. This time, it was not Hizbullah that was behind the attacks, but the Abdullah Azzam Brigades, an al-Qa’ida-linked group that took “credit” for similar missile strikes on Israel in 2009 and 2011. Lebanese President Michel Sleiman condemned the incident as a violation of UN  Security Council Resolution 1701 and Lebanon’s sovereignty. Hizbullah  did not comment. Israel retaliated and launched an attack in Na’ameh, targeting a base of a Palestinian militant group. This incident can be seen as a microcosm of the Lebanese reality in which a president can only complain about the violation of national sovereignty by militias and terror groups that operate on his territory but are beyond his control. These recent events tie in with the volume under review.
 
Henrietta  Wilkins’ book, an adaptation of her PhD thesis at Durham  University, seeks to explain Lebanon’s behavior in the international  arena during the 2006 war between Hizbullah and Israel and, in so doing, to highlight the limitation of systemic theories in explaining foreign policy. On the one hand, this book is about Lebanon with a focus on the 2006 war and its ramifications for Lebanon’s foreign policy. On  the other  hand,  it is also a treatise  on International  Relations  (IR) theory and, even more so, about the limitation of systematic IR theories that often attempt  to synthesize (and  simplify) foreign policy principles but, at the same time, fail the “deduction” test. View full post…
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