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Departures Podcast with Michael Scharf

As the Syrian conflict has raged on for almost a decade, and the United Nations is hamstrung with Russia’s veto power over proposed legal instruments to intervene, international law finds itself being innovated at light speed in response. Michael Scharf, the co-dean of the Law School of Case Western Reserve University and the co-author of […]

From Libya to Syria, French-Turkish Interests Collide

Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said Friday that Turkey is still waiting for an apology from France over a naval standoff last month in the Mediterranean Sea. To recap, an incident happened between the navy forces of Turkey and France, two NATO allies, in the Mediterranean on June 10. Paris accused a Turkish navy of […]

Five Things to Read on Trump’s Syria Withdrawal

President Donald Trump’s completely unexpected decision to pull 2,000 U.S. troops out of the conflict in Syria – announced this week via Twitter without much visible consultation – has predictably caused a bit of a shitstorm in the natsec community in Washington DC. There seems to be wide-ranging speculations about Trump’s motivations to make this […]

Assad Just Gassed Putin’s Chance at a Deal

It’s always difficult to pinpoint the moment in which a policy changes, but yesterday’s horrific chemical weapons attack in Idlib appears to signal a shift in how the Trump administration may view its options in the conflict. The attack, which has already killed more than 100 people and injured another 400, including a great number […]

Bibi’s Big Day in Washington

The level of attention directed toward today’s speech before the U.S. Congress by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is nothing short of remarkable. He’s on the front page of pretty much every news service, on every channel (even the disinterested European broadcasters), clogging the Twitter timeline of everyone remotely interested in politics. Bibi’s goal is […]

Israel, United States More Unpopular than Russia

Yesterday the BBC released the results of the latest GlobeScan International Policy Attitudes survey, which asks respondents to rate countries according to whether they have a negative or positive impact on the world. The most unpopular countries are the following: 1. Israel (56% negative) 2. Iran (54% negative) 3. United States (51% negative) 4. North […]