Homeland Security Portal

Homeland Security Portal

Terrorism

Lessons from Israel’s Response to Terrorism

, March 1, 2017

A team of Jerusalem Center experts headed by Fiamma Nirenstein – former Vice President of the Committee on Foreign Affairs in Italy’s Chamber of Deputies – takes a very timely look at Israel’s model for dealing with terror.
Contributors to this study include Amb. Dore Gold, Brig. Gen. (res.) Yossi Kuperwasser, Amb. Freddy Eytan, Amb. Alan Baker, Dan Diker, Prof. Asa Kasher, Jennifer Roskies, and Dr. Irwin Mansdorf. Read More »

Democracy Facing Terrorism: Human Rights and Military Ethics

, March 1, 2017

This chapter provides a conceptual framework for presentation, explanation, and justification of practices Israel has used over decades for facing terrorism. These practices are related to fighting terrorists and their supporters, usually but not always outside areas of Israeli effective control, and respecting human and civil rights within the confines of Israel and areas under its effective control. Read More »

Incentivizing Terrorism: Palestinian Authority Allocations to Terrorists and their Families

, January 17, 2017

The Palestinian Authority’s legislation and allocations of monthly salaries and benefits rewarding imprisoned and released terrorists, and the families of “Martyrs,” amount to $300 million annually. This financial reward clearly demonstrates the PA’s institutional commitment to sponsoring terror against Israel. Read More »

Why Is France the Preferred Target for Terrorists?

, July 19, 2016

After the murderous attack in Nice, France is sinking deep into depression; the Republic itself and its values sustained a heavy blow on the holiday of freedom. The French people still have not totally internalized the fact that they are in an existential war, and they are having trouble recovering from the recent wave of terror. France is the symbol of freedom, enlightenment, and democratic values, which stand in complete contrast to the dark, barbaric ideology of global terror organizations. Read More »

International Funding for Salaries and Benefits to Terrorists

, July 14, 2016

Funding from foreign governments (including the U.S., the UK, Denmark and other EU countries) transferred to official Palestinian governing bodies has been used for salaries and other benefits to Palestinians serving prison sentences for acts of terror. The channeling of donor funding to compensate terrorists and thereby to encourage further terror raises serious legal and moral questions. Read More »

How Close Are We to Unconventional Terror Attacks by ISIS? The Dirty Bomb Scenario

, May 19, 2016

How serious is threat the threat of an ISIS nuclear or radiological attack, and in the absence of clear leads and intelligence materials, how can we assess this threat? Read More »

Dying for Allah

, March 23, 2016

The sensitivity to criticism of the Islamic fundamentalist attitude on the “death for Allah” value, which has been fully adopted by the Palestinian cultural code, is a further instance of our difficulty in understanding a different culture, which leads us to project our own values onto the other in a mirror-perfect image. The value of “dying for Allah” has been adopted by Radical Islam’s distorted interpretation of Islam’s tenets. Read More »

Hamas’ Terrorism in Egypt

, March 10, 2016

Egypt has officially accused Hamas of training the terror operatives who assassinated Egyptian Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat last year. Hamas now fears that Egypt will declare the movement a terror organization and torpedo Turkey’s efforts to ease the blockade of Gaza. Read More »

Palestinian Authority Funding to Terrorists and their Families

, March 3, 2016

The Palestinian Authority (PA) is responsible for one more nefarious form of incitement to attack Jews – paying large bounties to the attackers and their families. Rather than being deterred by the harsh consequence of their terrorist attack at Israel’s hand, the perpetrators are actually encouraged and incentivized by the Palestinian leadership. Read More »

The Knife and the Message:
The Roots of the New Palestinian Uprising

and , February 29, 2016

A carefully calibrated policy of incitement has brought the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to a new level, one that generates terror without fingerprints, but which adroitly serves Fatah’s strategy of an endless war of attrition against Israel. Read More »

Interpreting Palestinian “Sign Language”

, February 16, 2016

The attempted terror attack at Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate on February 14, 2016 signifies that the effort to turn the “popular intifada” into armed terror does not only stem from Hamas, which opposed the popular struggle approach from the beginning, but also from the Fatah movement in the West Bank. The graphics of Fatah sites devoted to the intifada (or the “habba” or buzz) provide clues to the direction the winds are blowing. Read More »

Incitement by the Palestinians’ Post-Attack PR Industry

, February 2, 2016

In the current surge of attacks, the terrorist trail of incitement may not be apparent before the attack, but the terrorist trail of incitement after the attack certainly is. This post-attack trail serves as all-too-sufficient incitement for the next attack. Read More »

The Psychology of "Lone Wolf" Palestinian Arab Violence

, January 14, 2016

The outbreak of violence by mostly young individual Palestinian Arabs has been attributed to a variety of explanations that range from nationalistic motives to more religious ones. Religious and nationalistic factors can both act as triggers for violence, and what is termed “incitement” appears to be an interactive process that combines a causative psychological igniting factor with pre-existing supportive cognitive fuel. Read More »

The True Face of the Palestinians’ Leader

, January 13, 2016

There is a continued perception of Mahmoud Abbas as the “moderate” representative of the Palestinian cause. This stance represents a misunderstanding of Abbas’ position, which continues to encourage terror, but not terror through means of firearms. Such encouragement is responsible for the latest wave of terror in Israel. Read More »

How to Block the Ongoing Palestinian Terror Wave

, January 3, 2016

The Palestinian terror wave is not letting up, and fighting it more effectively requires a close examination of its roots and its objectives. Read More »

Saving Gazans or Saving Gaza’s Terrorist Tunnels?

, December 29, 2015

In light of Egypt’s anti-tunnel campaign on the Gazan border, the anti-Israel, violence-advocating International Solidarity Movement has issued a plea to Egypt to halt said campaign. The ISM claims that the campaign needlessly endangers innocent Palestinian lives. However, in recent years, these tunnels have become two-way conduits for weapons, with Hamas providing weapons to ISIS terrorists in the Sinai Peninsula. Read More »

The Palestinian Authority Will Find No Friend in ISIS

, December 28, 2015

The threats against Israel by ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi constitute a change in the terror organization’s line. So far it has avoided such proclamations, and its official organs make almost no mention of the Palestine problem. However, such a change should be distressing to the PA, as the PA and the PLO want to establish a Palestinian state, and that goal totally contravenes ISIS’s ambition to destroy the existing states and create a sharia-based caliphate in their stead. Read More »

How Jihadists Link Paris and Jerusalem

, December 10, 2015

Radical Islamic terrorism in Paris and Jerusalem has reignited the debate in the West over terrorist motivation. Read More »

Do Stabbing Attacks Constitute Terrorism?

, December 9, 2015

Why did the Swedish leadership, while acknowledging the need to prevent individuals from carrying out acts of terror, nevertheless appear to have maintained such a blatant double-standard in denying that knife attacks by individuals against Israeli citizens could be acts of terror? Read More »

The “Spontaneous” Intifada Is Orchestrated by the Palestinian Leadership

, November 29, 2015

The Palestinian leadership is attempting to portray the current intifada as a popular, spontaneous struggle that expresses the population's despair over the political situation. In reality, it is an intifada supported and directed by the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah . The green light for violent agitation and terror attacks has been given by the Palestinian leadership​. ​The Palestinian leadership also guarantees a network of social and financial support to any Palestinian resident who is arrested, wounded or harmed in the course of anti-Israel terror activity. The Palestinian Authority, led by Mahmoud Abbas, wants to use the violence as a tool to achieve its political objectives, which include compelling Israel to withdraw from the West Bank and east Jerusalem. Read More »

Terror Is Terror Is Terror

, November 23, 2015

If terror is to be fought and soundly defeated, the struggle must be waged against all the terror organizations and the states that support them. Iran has already headed the list of terror-supporting states for years. It is now awarded the status of a partner in trying to settle the Syrian crisis.The United States and the West continue to take an approach to terror that is unfocused, selective, and indulgent. They are no longer prepared to pay the price that is entailed in a resolute, hands-on struggle against terror. Read More »

Iran’s Fortunes Rising in a Middle East Vacuum

, March 19, 2014

Iran is implementing a plan to expand its influence over the Middle Eastern region. As a primary sponsor of Hizbullah and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), the “long arm” of Iranian influence may be attempting to establish itself as a regional power player, in the wake of the U.S.’ declining prestige. Read More »

After the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Is Hamas in Gaza Next in Line?

, October 1, 2013

With the fall of the Muslim Brotherhood, Egyptian security forces take aim at the Palestinian offshoot of the Brotherhood, Hamas. A U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organization, Hamas has recently lost many of its regional allies. With their supply routes in danger, Hamas leaders are scrambling for ways to stay alive. Read More »

The Fundamentals of Israel's Strategic Environment

, August 22, 2013

There is a view that developments since the advent of the Arab Spring have completely altered the way Israel should look at its national security needs for many decades to come. However, while many of the essential facts of Israeli security remain the same, the changes in neighboring and hostile regimes, such as power vacuums being filled by terrorist organizations and additional weaponry being smuggled into conflict zones, result in a need for re-evaluation of Israeli strategy. Read More »

NGOs: “Global Conscience” or Powerful Political Actors?

, July 15, 2013

Nearly forty thousand INGOs are active in the world today. Experts point to the possibility that some INGOs are being widely exploited by terrorist networks as easy points of infiltration into the civic space. Some are accused of not denouncing violence, or even of supporting terrorism. It must therefore be realized that INGOs can potentially facilitate international cooperation and the rule of law, but they can also obstruct them. Read More »

Egypt after Morsi: The Defeat of Political Islam?

, July 12, 2013

The Muslim Brotherhood’s 80-year dream to take over Egypt ended in a fiasco, barely one year after one of its own was democratically elected to the office of President of Egypt. The Brotherhood’s loss sends a message that political Islam can be subdued by moderate and liberal forces, providing hope to those struggling against Jihadist and MB-associated groups. The new regime in Egypt allows Israel maintain the status quo with regards to the Egyptian/Israeli Peace Treaty. Read More »

Changing Forms of Incitement to Violence

, 2012

The most neglected yet critical component of international terror is the element of incitement. Incitement is the medium through which the ideology of terror actually materializes into the act of terror itself. This volume presents insights of experts regarding incitement, as well as a Draft International Convention to Combat Incitement to Terror and Violence intended for presentation to the Secretary-General of the United Nations. Read More »

Draft International Convention for the Prevention of Incitement

, July 12, 2012

The draft international convention proposed in this paper represents an effort to place before the international community a draft comprehensive instrument that attempts to address the issue of incitement and to criminalize it in international law. Read More »

Iran, Hizbullah, Hamas and the Global Jihad: A New Conflict Paradigm for the West

, , , , and , 2011

Iran’s primary vulnerability is the economic sphere. Although half of the Iranian government’s revenues come from the export of crude oil, without foreign investment, production of crude oil will falter. In order to convince Iran to give up the nuclear program, the U.S. and its allies must exploit their economic leverage, backed up by a credible threat of military force against the nuclear program and other targets in Iran as necessary. Read More »

Iran’s Race for Regional Supremacy: Strategic Implications for the Middle East

, September 21, 2011

Iran has accelerated its quest for regional supremacy through its mobilization of both Shiite and Sunni terror surrogates, including Hizbullah in Lebanon, Shiite militias in Iraq and in the Gulf, the Taliban in Afghanistan, and Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Al Aksa Martyrs’ Brigades in the Palestinian territories. These actions could destabilize the entire region, creating a threat to global security. Read More »

Hatred’s Kingdom: How Saudi Arabia Supports the New Global Terrorism

, 2011

Saudi Arabia’s support for terrorism is examined in this book. The Saudi kingdom has supplied the radical ideology that compels terrorist action, as well as providing terrorists with manpower and money. Read More »

Conference: Hamas the Gaza War and Accountability under International Law

, June 18, 2009

Hamas failed in its duty to serve its citizens by developing the economy and society. Instead, Hamas built an arsenal of weapons and engaged in terror attacks against the Israeli state, forcing Israel to engage in a defensive operation. The goal of this conference is to contribute to clarifying the legal challenges to fighting terrorist organizations like Hamas, as well as serving as a starting point for a dialogue between Israel and Germany about how to combat terror groups and to adhere to international standards. Read More »

Hamas is not the IRA

and , July 17, 2008

Critiques the strategy of negotiating with terrorist groups, using the Northern Ireland peace process as a model. Read More »

Hizballah’s Rocket Campaign Against Northern Israel:
A Preliminary Report

, August 31, 2006

From July 13 to August 13, the Israel Police reported 4,228 rocket impacts inside Israel from rockets fired by Hizballah. No geographical area in the world has sustained such a large quantity of rocket strikes since the Iran-Iraq war in the early 1980s.One-fourth of the rockets that landed within Israel landed within built-up areas. Israel suffered great numbers of fatalities and injuries, as well as extensive damage to infrastructure. This article discusses the challenge to national security posed by this type of weapon, and identifies areas where defense may be improved. Read More »

Israeli Strategy and Security

The National Security Aspect of Fighting Terror – The Israeli Experience

, March 1, 2017

Israel’s long experience of fighting terror has led to an understanding that terror is a strategy that presents a significant threat to Israel’s national security, even if most of the time it appears as a low-intensity action with limited damage and impact. This understanding was adopted gradually, after a long period of time, during which Israel acted against the threat as if it were a strategic threat but tried to convince itself that it was not. For many years, especially as long as the conventional military threat from Arab armies loomed over its survival, Israel referred to terror as a lesser menace and used the euphemistic term “current security threat” to conceptualize it. Read More »

Cyber Terror and Security

, March 1, 2017

The challenge of dealing with the terror threats on the Internet is becoming more complicated, as the quantity of data grows exponentially and as the terrorists make effective use of the cyber dimension for a wide variety of purposes. They take advantage of the Internet’s wide reach, its complexity, the ability to use it without being identified, the emphasis by its mega-corporate operators on protecting privacy and free speech, its reliability, and its commitment to facilitate secrecy so that secured communications will be guaranteed for everybody. Read More »

The Curious State Department Announcement on Israeli Settlements

, August 2, 2016

A brief review of recent State Department statements would indicate that the State Department appears to be utterly and disproportionately fixated with Israel’s settlements, to the exclusion of any other issue that could be bothering the world’s largest and only super-power. Read More »

The Post-Brexit Future of European-Israeli Relations

, July 3, 2016

Britain’s exit, or Brexit, from the European Union is first and foremost a severe British domestic problem that its leaders alone must solve with diligence and as soon as possible. However, Europe as a whole is slowly regaining its composure, and it looks unlikely to change its Middle East policies as a result. Israel must prepare itself accordingly. Read More »

After the Israel-Turkey Agreement, Turkey and Hamas Will Still Collaborate

, June 27, 2016

Turkey’s actions during the reconciliation negotiations with Israel showed its continued good relations with Hamas as well as its continued snubbing of the Palestinian Authority. Read More »

The Internal Palestinian Fight for Jerusalem

, April 14, 2016

East Jerusalem, despite being linked with both Israel and the West Bank, has developed an independent political system. The main public activity in East Jerusalem occurs at the plaza of the mosques on the Temple Mount where the Islamic movements are the dynamic political forces. Both regional powers and Islamic movements vie for control of the plaza and the city’s Arab population. Read More »

The Two States in the West Bank and Gaza Annul the Two-State Solution

, March 8, 2016

In the face of increased Palestinian pressure at the UN Security Council and other diplomatic arenas, Israel is being increasingly pressured to acquiesce to a hastily implemented Two-State Solution. However, this has become increasingly problematic, with the existence of two Palestinian states making these diplomatic drives irrelevant. Read More »

The Delusion of Separation from the Palestinians

, March 2, 2016

The Israeli center-left is slowly sobering-up from the dream of a Palestinian partner. Although many of its leaders and thinkers have already recognized the fact that there is no partner for real peace, they continue to blame Israel for the dead-end the diplomatic process has reached. Read More »

Have the Palestinians Renounced the Peace Process?

, February 18, 2016

The Palestinian Foreign Minister, Riyad Malki, recently stated that the Palestinians “will never go back and sit again in direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.” Many would brush aside such a statement as another example of routine Palestinian bravado and propaganda. In fact, Malki’s announcement must be taken with the utmost seriousness. Read More »

France’s Ultimatum to Israel – Legally Flawed and Politically Imprudent

, February 2, 2016

This ultimatum undermines the Oslo accords (which it witnessed) and jumps to conclusions on issues which must be settled through negotiation. Read More »

Fatah, with Mahmoud Abbas at the Helm, Confirms the Confrontation Strategy toward Israel

, December 8, 2015

The Fatah Central Committee gave its backing to a strategy that combines the terror intifada with diplomatic and legal moves in the international arena aimed at achieving recognition of the state of Palestine as well as an Israeli withdrawal to the 1967 borders with no political quid pro quo from the Palestinians. Read More »

Outlawing the Northern Branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel

, November 23, 2015

On November 17, 2015, Israel’s security cabinet resolved to declare the northern branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel as an illegal organization. This means that any entity or person belonging to this organization henceforth, as well as any person or group providing financial and other services, or acting on its behalf, will be committing a criminal offense and subject to imprisonment of up to 10 years. It will also be possible to seize all property belonging to the organization. Read More »

Do the Palestinians Want Two States?

, November 9, 2015

The former head of Palestinian General Intelligence, Tawfik Tirawi, a member of Fatah's Central Committee, told an interviewer on the PA's official TV channel that the Palestinians have waged an ongoing struggle to liberate their land ever since the Balfour Declaration, 98 years ago. This is the context in which to regard the current wave of terror attacks. Just as many Zionists now recognize the Palestinian people's right to a nation-state in its land in the framework of the permanent settlement, so long as it does not constitute a threat to Israel's security, so must the Palestinians be required to recognize the Jewish people's right to a (democratic) nation-state in the land of its forefathers. The only possible solution is that of two states for two peoples with mutual recognition. The idea has not died; it simply has not yet been born because the Palestinians, and the Europeans who support them, refuse to allow its birth. Read More »

Jerusalem: Delusions of Division – Introduction

, September 1, 2015

This book, which deals with the future of Jerusalem, was first published seven years ago with the title The Dangers of Division. After a wave of extreme Palestinian violence that centered on Jerusalem, it was rewritten in 2015, considerably expanded, and updated with data, facts, analyses, and conclusions. Read More »

The Disintegration of Syria and Its Impact on Israel

, August 31, 2015

Syria's fragmentation into separate, battling enclaves is intensifying. The two main enclaves are "central Syria," controlled by the Assad regime, and the Islamic State. The nuclear deal between Iran and the world powers has boosted Iran's capacity to support the Assad regime. Iran and Hizbullah's attempts to create a base for terror activity against Israel from the northern Golan Heights continue, relying on released terrorist Samir Kuntar and Druze elements. Read More »

The Nuclear Deal: No Pause in Iran's Vow to Destroy Israel

, August 16, 2015

Members of the Iranian Army high command (as opposed to the Revolutionary Guards) have even declared their willingness and capability to destroy Israel, once the leader’s order is given. Practically speaking, the regime’s intelligence and international subversion agencies, mostly the Revolutionary Guards Quds Force, massively support anti-Israel terror groups and stage repeated conferences in Iran dedicated to denial of the Holocaust and to the deligitimization of Israel’s right to exist. Read More »

Israel’s Critical Requirements for Defensible Borders
The Foundation for a Secure Peace

, June 1, 2014

Outline of basic principles of a defense policy for Israel based on defensible borders. Read More »

After the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Is Hamas in Gaza Next in Line?

, October 1, 2013

With the fall of the Muslim Brotherhood, Egyptian security forces take aim at the Palestinian offshoot of the Brotherhood, Hamas. A U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organization, Hamas has recently lost many of its regional allies. With their supply routes in danger, Hamas leaders are scrambling for ways to stay alive. Read More »

The Fundamentals of Israel's Strategic Environment

, August 22, 2013

There is a view that developments since the advent of the Arab Spring have completely altered the way Israel should look at its national security needs for many decades to come. However, while many of the essential facts of Israeli security remain the same, the changes in neighboring and hostile regimes, such as power vacuums being filled by terrorist organizations and additional weaponry being smuggled into conflict zones, result in a need for re-evaluation of Israeli strategy. Read More »

Egypt after Morsi: The Defeat of Political Islam?

, July 12, 2013

The Muslim Brotherhood’s 80-year dream to take over Egypt ended in a fiasco, barely one year after one of its own was democratically elected to the office of President of Egypt. The Brotherhood’s loss sends a message that political Islam can be subdued by moderate and liberal forces, providing hope to those struggling against Jihadist and MB-associated groups. The new regime in Egypt allows Israel maintain the status quo with regards to the Egyptian/Israeli Peace Treaty. Read More »

Strategic Shifts in the Middle East

, July 1, 2013

Various regional and strategic issues represent threats and concerns to the State of Israel, including peace negotiations with the Palestinian Authority, Israeli policy towards Syria, and Israeli opinion regarding the threat of a nuclear Iran. Read More »

Iran Fears Growing Israel-Azerbaijan Cooperation

, May 17, 2013

Through a mutual distrust of Iranian intentions, Israel and Azerbaijan have enjoyed a closer relationship. Iran is concerned by this tightening of Israeli/Azerbaijani relations, as Azerbaijan could be used for a potential strike against Iran’s nuclear sites. Iran has also sponsored a great number of terrorist cells in Azerbaijan, including factions of Lebanese Hizbullah, and has been accused of attempting to sway Azerbaijan’s political structure. Read More »

What Israel Has Learned about Security:
Nine IDF Officers Discuss Israel’s Security Challenges

, November 1, 2012

Topics covered in this volume include Israel’s experience in counterinsurgency warfare, the effectiveness of security barriers, predicting the rise of Hamas, lessons of the Second Lebanon War of 2006, and the possibility of security arrangements for Israel in the Golan Heights. Read More »

Israel’s Right to Self-Defense: International Law and Gaza

, November 1, 2012

This volume provides a review of Israel’s unprecedented and careful consideration of questions of international law when forced to go to war to defend its civilian population from attack, with a particular focus on the Gaza war of 2008-2009. The broad questions discussed include the law of armed conflict, proportionality, asymmetric conflicts, self-defense, accountability, and “lawfare.” Read More »

Turkey, the Global Muslim Brotherhood, and the Gaza Flotilla

, November 30, 2011

This report resents the results of an investigation into the role played by the Global Muslim Brotherhood and its Turkish allies in the May 2010 Gaza Flotilla which involved a violent altercation between passengers on one of the ships and Israeli naval forces. Read More »

Winning Counterinsurgency War: The Israeli Experience

, August 23, 2010

Contrary to popular belief, conventional armies can indeed defeat terrorist insurgencies. This study will detail the six basic conditions which, if met, enable an army to fight and win the war against terrorism, among which are control of the ground where the insurgency is being waged, acquiring relevant intelligence for operations against the terrorists themselves, and isolating the insurgency from crossborder reinforcement with manpower or material. Read More »

Defensible Borders on the Golan Heights

, August 27, 2009

Addresses Israel’s Security Strategy with regards to the Golan Heights area, particularly in light of the threat from Hizbullah and war with Syria Read More »

Area Studies: Palestinian Affairs

The Palestinian Authority’s Succession Struggle Continues

, February 23, 2017

Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas made new appointments to the Fatah leadership on February 15, 2017, and also named a deputy chairman of the movement. He did not, however, solve the problem of the Palestinian succession struggle for the chairmanship. Read More »

Can the Palestinians Mobilize the Arab World on the U.S. Embassy Issue?

, January 31, 2017

  • The intention of U.S. President Donald Trump to move the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem evoked angry reactions in the Palestinian Authority which is preparing to block the initiative.
  • Arab reaction to the embassy move depends on both Palestinian pressure and whether or not the Trump administration intends to follow through with his election promise to move the embassy.
  • Jerusalem is very important to the Palestinian Authority and the Muslim Brotherhood and is less important to other Arab countries and Saudi Arabia in particular.
  • Husam Zomlut, strategic affairs advisor to PA President Abbas and Palestinian ambassador-designate to Washington, admitted to Hamas TV that the aim of Palestinian diplomacy is to side-line the United States from its role in leading the peace process in favor of Europe and the UN.
Read More »

Iran Is Courting Hamas

, September 6, 2016

With the outbreak of the Syrian civil war in 2011, Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal refused to take the side of President Bashar Assad, and Hamas’ political leadership found itself at loggerheads with Iran; it has since faced a cooling in relations. Since then, Iran has not remained inactive. It is now resuming its courtship of Hamas in an attempt to add it to the Shiite camp and restore its former ties with the movement, exporting its particularly virulent strain of radical Islam in the region. Read More »

The Fraying Palestinian Political Entity in the West Bank

, August 2, 2016

The Palestinian Authority is failing to control extensive parts of the West Bank. As a result, some districts of the West Bank are developing in different directions, thereby accelerating the process of the PA’s disintegration. In particular, this piece focuses on three West Bank cities - Hebron, Ramallah, and Nablus (Shechem) - and the different forces threatening to tear them apart. Read More »

The Internal Palestinian Fight for Jerusalem

, April 14, 2016

East Jerusalem, despite being linked with both Israel and the West Bank, has developed an independent political system. The main public activity in East Jerusalem occurs at the plaza of the mosques on the Temple Mount where the Islamic movements are the dynamic political forces. Both regional powers and Islamic movements vie for control of the plaza and the city’s Arab population. Read More »

Dying for Allah

, March 23, 2016

The sensitivity to criticism of the Islamic fundamentalist attitude on the “death for Allah” value, which has been fully adopted by the Palestinian cultural code, is a further instance of our difficulty in understanding a different culture, which leads us to project our own values onto the other in a mirror-perfect image. The value of “dying for Allah” has been adopted by Radical Islam’s distorted interpretation of Islam’s tenets. Read More »

The Knife and the Message:
The Roots of the New Palestinian Uprising

and , February 29, 2016

The latest wave of Palestinian violence against Jews is something new, an insidious wave of seemingly un-orchestrated attacks, perpetrated by unlikely assailants, and generally untraceable to any particular organization. They were also characterized by brutality and the purposeful use of the knife, to drive home the intent of bringing a new and unrelenting wave of slaughter to the Jews; a message to all Israelis that neither they, nor their children, will ever be able to live in this land in peace. However, the Mahmoud Abbas and those under his authority are indeed instructing young Palestinians what to do. Read More »

Connecting the Terror in Paris with the Terror against Israel

, December 1, 2015

Despite the apparent lack of a true connection between the Islamic terror against the West and the Palestinian terror against Israel being confined to technical aspects, a link exists between the two; both are expressions of radical Islamic struggle against the West. Read More »

Hamas Looks beyond Jerusalem … to Rome and Beyond

, November 24, 2015

Despite the recent wave of terrorist attacks in Europe, Europe is in no hurry to equate global terrorism to Palestinian terror, the latter is still considered justified by some because Palestinians are supposedly fighting for the sake of independence and to be free from the “yoke of occupation.” A more careful examination of the roots of the Palestinian struggle reveals that it is also calculated against Europe, and is not geared towards an end to occupation, but rather to the eventual takeover of Europe. Read More »

Hamas’ Tunnel Network: A Massacre in the Making

, February 26, 2015

In the past decade, Hamas methodically built a sophisticated network of tunnels that would enable its fighters to infiltrate Israel and carry out terrorist attacks and abductions on an unprecedented scale. Operation Protective Edge exposed and targeted this tunnel network, eliminating one of Hamas’ strategic assets and preventing a devastating and broad surprise homefront attack. According to IDF Spokesman Lt. Col. Peter Lerner, “Hamas had a plan. A simultaneous, coordinated, surprise attack within Israel.” Read More »

Hamas’ Order of Battle: Weapons, Training, and Targets

, February 26, 2015

In the course of their 50-day war against Israel, Hamas and its terrorist partners in Gaza fired more than 4,500 rockets and mortars at Israel. The weapons’ ranges varied from two to 160 km., and the gross inaccuracy and inconsistency of the rocket fire meant that Hamas had unleashed truly terrorizing weaponry. Hamas, Fatah, and Islamic Jihad’s rockets were fired at major strategic targets: ports, industrial parks, power stations, water plants, reactors, military bases, and Defense Ministry facilities, demonstrating their respective organizational desires to indiscriminately harm Israelis. Read More »

Hamas’ Strategy Revealed

, February 26, 2015

The war in Gaza in July and August of 2014, fought between Israel and Hamas and other Palestinian terrorist organizations, was viewed by Hamas as a critical link in the chain of jihad and armed struggle, whose long-term goal is the liberation of all of Palestine and the destruction of Israel. Since its establishment in 1987, Hamas has enshrined its goal in the Hamas Charter which it steadfastly has refused to modify. The analysis that follows will show that destroying Israel remains its goal and, that there are signs that it has adopted genocidal doctrines as well, directed against the Jewish people as a whole, beyond its militancy toward the Jewish state. Read More »

The Hidden Hand of ISIS and Its Impact on Palestinian Escalation

, November 13, 2014

In recent months, the State of Israel has been facing what military jargon terms “popular terrorist activity.” Much of this violence is a product of both Hamas and Fatah incitement. However, there is also an ominous “hidden hand” at work directly impacting events throughout the Middle East and the Palestinian arena. Read More »

Hamas Policy after Operation “Protective Edge”

, September 18, 2014

Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal recently revealed Hamas’ unfolding strategy in the wake of the Gaza war, particularly the use of the international system as an economic safety net after every terror offensive. Hamas will use international legal instruments to participate in the Palestinians’ delegitimization campaign that seeks ultimately to bring an end to the State of Israel, all the while trying to gain access to the PLO and wrest away control from within. Read More »

PA's Ties with Hamas, Islamic Jihad: An Iranian Windfall

, May 14, 2014

Fatah and Hamas are continuing to talk in an attempt to translate the reconciliation agreement which was signed on April 23, 2014 into a series of operative steps. These primarily involve integrating Hamas and Islamic Jihad into PLO institutions, setting up a unity government, and preparing for new parliamentary and presidential elections. Abbas is inadvertently providing Hamas and Islamic Jihad the tools to take control of the Palestinian national movement. Read More »

The Myth of the Moderate Hamas

, April 27, 2014

Every time the profile of Hamas rises as a result of some development in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, there is an effort undertaken to repackage Hamas as a moderate organization. Read More »

Hamas Sends a Signal to Iran

, October 18, 2013

Musa Abu Marzook, deputy to Khaled Mashal, head of the Hamas politburo, gave a recent interview to the pro-Assad Al Mayadeen TV station in Lebanon that has not received appropriate attention. This significant interview demonstrates Hamas’ willingness to join the international network of terror. Read More »

After the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Is Hamas in Gaza Next in Line?

, October 1, 2013

For the first time since it was founded, Hamas is showing signs of panic. Egyptian newspapers quoted Palestinian sources as saying that 90 percent of the smuggling tunnels along the border with Gaza have stopped functioning as a result of Egyptian measures, leading to the potential loss of nearly 40 percent of Hamas’ revenues. Read More »

Palestinian Responsibility for the Second Intifada

, February 20, 2013

Despite revisionist claims, extensive testimony during and following the Second Intifada demonstrates the Palestinian Authority’s role in initiating and managing the Second Intifada as an extensive terror onslaught, designed to impose a unilateral, unconditional withdrawal upon Israel, and improve conditions in anticipation of the battle for realizing Palestinian demands for the return of the refugees. Read More »

Deception: The Palestinian Authority’s Public Commitments and Its Actual Activities and Messages

, November 2, 2012

Within Palestinian society, numerous examples exist of anti-Semitic websites that demonize Jews and openly call for Israel’s destruction that are condemned by Western leaders. However, there is an incorrect assumption that those messages are no longer part of the official PA world. This piece sheds light on and then disproves that false assumption. Read More »

Palestinian Incitement and Peace: An Insurmountable Incompatibility

, November 1, 2012

Incitement to hatred and violence is a weapon of political warfare. Potentially, it is also one of the basic steps in the sequence of stages leading to genocide. As a weapon of political warfare, incitement belongs to the same category as agitation and propaganda. Today, Palestinian leadership is guilty of just such this type of warfare, with near daily cases of incitement occurring. Read More »

Hamas and Jihadi Networks in Sinai

, August 15, 2012

After the Rafah attack (which Egyptian security sources told the newspaper al-Youm al-Saba that the Palestinian Army of Islam was responsible for), it was noticeable that the Egyptian government refrained from condemning terrorists’ plan to carry out a mass-casualty attack in Israel. Egypt and Hamas share a similar policy toward the Salafi terror organizations within their territory - the regime views the organizations as legitimate and does not intend to proscribe them so long as they do not undermine the central government or harm its basic interests. Read More »

The Palestinian Refugees on the Day After “Independence”

, December 1, 2011

The Palestinian demand for a “just peace” is essentially a death sentence for Israel, as it requires the immediate resettlement of Palestinian “refugees” in Israel, which would eliminate Israel’s identity as a Jewish state. Furthermore, this may lead to a humanitarian crisis among the refugees themselves; Israeli accession to this Palestinian demand could trigger the expulsion of Palestinian refugees from other Arab lands. Read More »

Key Principles of a Demilitarized Palestinian State

, November 12, 2011

Without demilitarization, a Palestinian state is likely to become one of two things: either a base for Palestinian terror attacks or a conduit for threats from further east. Read More »

Area Studies: Iran

Jay Solomon, The Iran Wars: Spy Games, Bank Battles, and the Secret Deals that Reshaped the Middle East

, March 8, 2017

Jay Solomon, chief foreign affairs correspondent for the Wall Street Journal, has written a detailed diplomatic history of the Obama administration’s signature foreign policy initiative – the Iran Nuclear Deal, completed in the summer of 2015. Read More »

Yemen Has Become Iran’s Testing Ground for New Weapons

, March 2, 2017

  • The ongoing crisis in Yemen is giving Iran an opportunity to turn Yemen into a testing ground for various weapons it is developing for the maritime and military arenas.
  • The Houthi rebels are getting ongoing assistance from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), mainly via Hizbullah trainers, in the use of missiles and rockets, drones, explosive devices, and battlefield materiel.
  • Houthis have increased their missile fire, including Scuds, from Yemeni territory at different targets in Saudi Arabia, including airports and civilian infrastructures. Hizbullah advisers are taking part in some of the missile launches.
  • The Houthis have been increasingly active in the maritime arena in the strategic Bab el-Mandab area. In addition to the occasional launch of Iranian-supplied anti-ship cruise missiles, the Houthis have begun to deploy, apparently with Iranian assistance, unmanned remote-controlled maritime craft.
  • Iran’s active involvement in the conflict in Yemen, including the various weapons it is introducing and testing in the arena, has implications for the Palestinian terror organizations’ and Hizbullah’s future rounds of warfare against Israel.
Read More »

The False Narrative of Iranian Moderation

, February 23, 2017

The Iranian threat to Israel over the last number of years has been measured either by looking at the capabilities the Iranian armed forces have and are able to employ in any future conflict, and by the intentions that Iran harbors with respect to Israel’s future and its security. Read More »

Iranian Official and Social Media Call for the Destruction of Israel after the JCPOA

, February 16, 2017

The signing of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA, July 2015) between the P5+1 and Iran has not stopped Iran’s religious, political and military establishment – and Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei – from propagating Israel’s destruction, terming the “illegal and filthy Zionist regime” a cancerous tumor in the very heart of the Middle East. The JCPOA failed to recognize that Iran’s extensive missile program is a direct factor in the dramatic increase in the self-confidence of the Islamic Republic. Read More »

Iran Grabs the Reins in Gaza

, February 14, 2017

Hamas made a semi-official announcement on February 14, 2017, via Al Jazeera, that it had chosen Yahya Sinwar, one of the security prisoners released in the “Shalit deal” in 2011, as its senior leader in Gaza. Apparently he will serve as the “security minister” in the non-official government of Ismail Haniyeh. Read More »

Rethinking the Iran Agreement

, January 25, 2017

President Trump’s invitation to Prime Minister Netanyahu to visit Washington for a summit meeting is likely to bring into relief the question of the future of the P5+1 agreement with Iran regarding its nuclear program. As currently constituted, the Iran agreement is extremely dangerous for Israel, Western European countries, and for the United States, and requires careful consideration about whether and how the West should proceed with it. Read More »

Iranian-Saudi Tensions Are Played Out in Bahrain

, January 11, 2017

  • In Bahrain, the ruling Sunni al-Khalifa royal family has coped since 2011 with a popular uprising led by Iranian-inspired and manipulated Shi’ite political movements.
  • Most observers perceive the crisis in Bahrain as a clash between Sunnis and Shi’ites and as a logical projection: an expression of the conflict between Iran and Saudi Arabia for hegemony in the Gulf area.
  • However, it appears that the deeper reasons are three factors combined: modernization, British and American colonialism, and globalization.
  • It appears most likely that Iran will continue its subversive, covert activities meant to destabilize the kingdom with a mounting intensity and escalation of terrorist acts perpetrated in Bahraini territory – especially if the Bahraini regime incarcerates or deports the Shiite spiritual leader Ayatollah Isa Qassem.
  • Saudi Arabia, in countermeasures, will continue to promote anti-Shi’ite “clients” in Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, and Iraq, targeting Iranian interests and hegemony in the Middle East.
Read More »

Trump’s Big Decision on Iran

, December 7, 2016

During the election campaign, Donald Trump affirmed that immediately upon entering the White House he would “renegotiate the “disastrous” and “horrible” nuclear agreement with Iran. (Vice President-elect Mike Pence called for “ripping up the Iran deal” during the election campaign.) Following President Trump’s inauguration, Trump has three potential paths of action. Read More »

Iranian Missiles in Houthi Hands Threaten Freedom of Navigation in Red Sea

, October 13, 2016

Iran and its proxies could throttle regional choke points and disrupt international commerce. Playing down Iranian proxy aggression will play into Iranian propaganda and bolster Iran’s already overconfident and defiant stance. Read More »

“The Iran Wars” – Briefing by Jay Solomon

, October 6, 2016

Jay Solomon is the author of The Iran Wars: Spy Games, Bank Battles, and the Secret Deals that Reshaped the Middle East, and the chief foreign affairs correspondent for the Wall Street Journal. Here, he further expounds on the threat that Iran poses to the region. Read More »

Interview with Jay Solomon, author of “The Iran Wars”

, September 29, 2016

The Iranian sanctions and the covert actions against Iran’s nuclear program began under the Bush Administration. When did the Obama Administration start changing directions? Are there any positive changes in Iran’s foreign policy since the nuclear agreement in 2015? Are the Iranian’s adhering to the JCPOA? Read More »

Iran Is Courting Hamas

, September 6, 2016

With the outbreak of the Syrian civil war in 2011, Hamas leader Khaled Mashal refused to take the side of President Bashar Assad, and Hamas’ political leadership found itself at loggerheads with Iran. However, anti-Israel solidarity has since trumped Sunni-Shiite animosity. Read More »

Iranian Dissidents Visit Israel, View Iran after the Nuclear Deal

and , August 21, 2016

After the Iran nuclear deal (JCPOA) in 2015, a group of Iranian dissidents met with researchers at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs to discuss Iran in the post-agreement era. While the dissidents who visited Israel cannot be named, two Israeli experts who met with them describe the outcome of the meeting. Read More »

Ethnic Opposition to Iran’s Regime Is on the Rise

, July 24, 2016

Since June 2016, Iran has been enduring terror attacks and assassinations which are a reaction to Iran’s ongoing repressive policy against its ethnic minorities, such as Kurds (who are distinguished from Iran’s Shiite population by their language and Sunni beliefs) and Arabs (who are also mainly Sunni). Iran’s security forces have been cracking down on the Arabs, augmenting this population’s discontent along with its separatist aspirations. The Iranian regime, which so far has been spared the regional repercussions of the Arab Spring – or Islamic Awakening as the regime calls it – is now starting to feel the effects. Read More »

One Year after the Iran Nuclear Deal

, July 21, 2016

Iran is reaping the benefits of the deal, while the West pays the price of its weakness. In the meantime, we are all living with the consequences. Read More »

Cracks in the Iran-Syria-Hizbullah-Russia Axis

, June 20, 2016

Reports from Syria are proliferating about clashes between the Syrian army and Hizbullah fighters in the Aleppo area on June 16, with seven or eight Hizbullah men having been killed, some after an attack by Syrian aircraft. Even a scorecard won’t explain who’s shooting at whom today. Read More »

Iran in the Post-Nuclear Deal Era: Iranian Dissidents’ Perspective

and , May 19, 2016

The JCPOA is perceived by most participants as a “game-changer.” By studying the original insights of various Iranian dissidents, these personalities’ unique observations as well as their recommendations are highlighted and are able to contribute to a better understanding of Iran in the post-JCPOA era. Read More »

Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps: The Revolution Continues beyond Iran’s Borders

, May 17, 2016

After the JCPOA was signed on July 14, 2015, the Gulf States felt all the more threatened by Iran and concerned that the support the United States had given them previously was eroding. Iran, for its part, particularly by means of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), stepped up its involvement in the region - notably in Yemen, making use of Lebanese Hizbullah fighters among others. It also continues its clandestine intelligence activity in the Gulf States. Read More »

The Iranian Penetration of Iraqi Kurdistan

, January 21, 2016

Iran has positioned itself as a reliable military backer of Iraqi Kurdish forces, filling a vacuum the West has left as a result of its tepid support. Iranian penetration of Kurdistan allows Tehran to render it less likely that its major adversaries, including Israel and the U.S., will gain a secure foothold in a region that has a 400-mile border with Iran. Expectations of Kurdistan becoming an ally of Israel, America, and Europe may be in danger if the West continues to prioritize Iraqi and Turkish interests over those of the Kurds. The writer taught at Salahaddin University in Iraqi Kurdistan in 2012-2013. Read More »

Will the West Defend Its Own Values Against Radical Islam?

, December 23, 2015

The West is now reaping the fruits of its weakness in the Middle East, as it turns to the “extremist-realist” camp in the region for cooperation. This can be seen in Iran’s flouting of many aspects of the JCPOA which it agreed to - it is only technically cooperating with the JCPOA’s parameters. The West must make clear that it is committed to its own values and prepared to defend them. Read More »

Terror Is Terror Is Terror

, November 23, 2015

Iran keeps promoting its long-term strategic policy in Syria; it views the country as an integral component of its national security. Russia, which has moved urgently to help Assad’s regime survive, has paid a heavy price with the downing of a Russian passenger plane by the Islamic State. Iran is exploiting the West’s weakness, especially the United States’ fecklessness and lack of a clear policy on the Middle East’s future in general and on Assad’s in particular. Read More »

Iran’s Stake in Syria

, October 22, 2015

According to Hojjat al-Islam Mehdi Taeb, a former senior official of Iran's Basij militia, Iran's line of defense passes through Syria, and that is why the Iranian government proposed creating battalions of Basij-style militias in Syria.The crisis in Syria is gradually turning from a protracted regional crisis into an international one. For Iran, Syria constitutes the first line of defense against Israel, and also a line of defense for the Shiite population in Lebanon against Islamic State incursion. Read More »

The Mistaken Rationale behind the Iran Nuclear Deal

, September 9, 2015

The claim that Iran’s enrichment routes to a nuclear bomb have been blocked has no basis. In fact, Iran will have four routes to enriching uranium to a military level.The nuclear agreement with the main world powers is set to enable Iran safely, legally, and without economic hardships or changes in its rogue policies, to overcome the main obstacles on its way to possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal and becoming a regional hegemonic power. Read More »

Questions and Answers about the Iranian Nuclear Agreement

, August 26, 2015

The deal leaves Iran having enough fissile material to "break out" to a bomb within six months, and not within one year as the Administration claims (because the excess centrifuges and infrastructure are not destroyed). So far, all the Administration's prophecies of doom whenever measures were taken against Iran have turned out to be false. So far, the record of American intelligence (and that of Israeli intelligence, too) when it comes to revealing foreign nuclear programs, including those of Iran, is far from impressive (one thinks of North Korea, Syria, Iraq, India, and Pakistan). Read More »

Iran’s Fortunes Rising in a Middle East Vacuum

, March 19, 2014

Iran is implementing a plan to expand its influence over the Middle Eastern region. As a primary sponsor of Hizbullah and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), the “long arm” of Iranian influence may be attempting to establish itself as a regional power player, in the wake of the U.S.’ declining prestige. Read More »

How Nuclear Talks Help Iran Dominate the Middle East

, February 25, 2014

The nuclear talks are creating an atmosphere where the economic pressure will subside as Iran gains time to fill in the missing pieces of its nuclear program. Iran’s foreign policy is gaining momentum as Gulf States are persuaded to align with Iran. Ongoing negotiations with the United States are proceeding at a relaxed pace that allows Iran to continue working towards its strategic goals. Read More »

The Internal Iranian Struggle After the Geneva Agreement

, January 14, 2014

The Geneva nuclear agreement between Iran and the P5+1 has become a source of tension in Iran between the conservatives and Revolutionary Guard on one side, and President Hassan Rouhani, the nuclear negotiating team, and those considered the reformist camp on the other. The regime’s security establishment continues a crackdown on the opposition and social networks in an effort to protect Iran’s revolutionary Islamic nature. The intensity of public support for Rouhani is of no significance when it comes to Iran’s nuclear progress, nor is it likely to have substantial implications for the state of civil society and human rights in Iran. Read More »

Conflicting Expectations on the Geneva Deal with Iran

, December 11, 2013

Questions of interpretation have arisen from both sides about the Geneva document’s obligations to the relevant parties. Parties disagree on what the document means for nuclear breakout, U.S.-imposed sanctions on Iran, and uranium enrichment Read More »

Iran Looks Beyond the Nuclear Talks

, November 26, 2013

Khamenei underlines the decline in American power and influence (even among its friends) and the economic problems afflicting it, contrasting this with Iran’s rising power compared to the past. Iran does not come to the nuclear negotiations out of weakness, but, indeed, from a position of strength, and rather than having anything to lose from the talks, it only stands to gain from them, as it did in the interim agreement. Iran’s considerations in coming to the negotiating table are its assessment of America’s declining regional and international status and its own expanding reach. Read More »

The Emerging Geneva Agreement with Iran

, November 12, 2013

Eliminating Iran’s 20-percent-enriched uranium, but allowing the Iranians to continue to produce 3.5-percent-enriched uranium is an unacceptable option if the goal of the West is to prevent Iran from advancing a nuclear weapon. Allowing Iran to enrich to the 3.5-percent level will not address the threat emanating from Iran’s latest generation of faster centrifuges and the scenario of a fast dash by Iran to weapons-grade uranium, known as “nuclear break-out.” Read More »

Iran vs. the West: Endgame?

, October 15, 2013

Despite direct negotiations with the United States, Iran has no intention of halting their nuclear enrichment program. Iran could be within a few months of building a bomb. Read More »

Rowhani’s and Jalili’s Election Propaganda

, June 12, 2013

Election Propaganda from Jalili and Rowhani present the two sides of Iran’s nuclear negotiating tactics. The “principalist” [hard-line] candidates, represented by Jalili, take a dogmatic, uncompromising line on Iran’s foreign relations and its stance on the nuclear issue. The “pragmatic” candidates, represented by Rowhani, show a readiness to open a new chapter in Iran’s dealings with the world and conduct the nuclear talks in a calmer atmosphere. Read More »

Iran Fears Growing Israel-Azerbaijan Cooperation

, May 17, 2013

Through a mutual distrust of Iranian intentions, Israel and Azerbaijan have enjoyed a closer relationship. Iran is concerned by this tightening of Israeli/Azerbaijani relations, as Azerbaijan could be used for a potential strike against Iran’s nuclear sites. Iran has also sponsored a great number of terrorist cells in Azerbaijan, including factions of Lebanese Hizbullah, and has been accused of attempting to sway Azerbaijan’s political structure. Read More »

Understanding the Iranian Nuclear Challenge

, March 24, 2013

Over the last decade, a clear international consensus has slowly emerged that Iran was not just pursuing a civilian nuclear program, but rather was seeking nuclear weapons. The IAEA has raised concerns about the possible existence of certain areas of military research in the Iranian nuclear program, which, when coupled with Iran’s expansionist goals, presents a challenge to regional stability. Negotiations and proposals to protect the International Community from Iranian nuclear weapons must take into account all aspects of Iranian nuclear research. Read More »

The Iranian Role in the 2012 Gaza Conflict

, December 2, 2012

Iran’s supply of rockets to the Palestinians shows a lack of fear of Israel and the Western powers. The rift between Sunnis and Shia that is evident in various Middle Eastern conflicts makes clear that Iran will confront Sunni states like Egypt and Turkey over issues of regional hegemony and influence. These changes are becoming clear not only in actions in Gaza, but in the Syrian conflict as well. Read More »

The Role of Iranian Security Forces in Syria

, June 20, 2012

Iran views the confrontation in Syria as a critical battleground with the West regarding the reshaping of the Middle East and its own role in the region as a key, vital and influential player. Hizbullah is currently serving under Iran’s command as a part of Assad’s forces, and Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have been involved in Syrian events. Iran’s aid to Assad illustrates Iran’s goal of becoming a power capable of countering the West’s influence. Read More »

Iran: From Regional Challenge
to Global Threat

, 2012

This anthology of 31 recent studies by eleven leading security and diplomatic experts outlines the Iranian threat to Israel, the Middle East region, and the West. Included are discussions of Iran’s progress of developing nuclear weapons, sponsorship of terrorism, and use of resources to drive Western policies. Read More »

Iran, Hizbullah, Hamas and the Global Jihad: A New Conflict Paradigm for the West

, , , , and , 2011

Iran’s primary vulnerability is the economic sphere. Although half of the Iranian government’s revenues come from the export of crude oil, without foreign investment, production of crude oil will falter. In order to convince Iran to give up the nuclear program, the U.S. and its allies must exploit their economic leverage, backed up by a credible threat of military force against the nuclear program and other targets in Iran as necessary. Read More »

Iran’s Race for Regional Supremacy: Strategic Implications for the Middle East

, September 21, 2011

Iran has accelerated its quest for regional supremacy through its mobilization of both Shiite and Sunni terror surrogates, including Hizbullah in Lebanon, Shiite militias in Iraq and in the Gulf, the Taliban in Afghanistan, and Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Al Aksa Martyrs’ Brigades in the Palestinian territories. These actions could destabilize the entire region, creating a threat to global security. Read More »

The Rise of Nuclear Iran: How Tehran Defies the West

, 2011

In the West, liberal politicians and pundits are calling for renewed diplomatic engagement with Iran, convinced that Tehran will respond to reason and halt its nuclear weapons program. Yet, countries have repeatedly tried diplomatic talks and utterly failed. Gold examines these past failures, showing how Iran employed strategic deception and delay tactics to hide its intentions from the West. He argues that Western policymakers underestimate Iran s hostility toward us and explains why diplomacy will continue to backfire, no matter which party or president is in power. Read More »

Can Cold War Deterrence Apply to a Nuclear Iran?

, March 1, 2011

The Obama Administration’s policy of Cold War-style deterrence with regards to Iran fails to take into account various issues. The ideology of the Iranian leadership, the threat of a polynuclear Middle East, and the idealization of martyrdom are all issues which do not fit into a model of cold war style deterrence. Furthermore, should nuclear weapons become a reality in the region; it is possible that they may filter down to quasi-states, terrorist organizations, and rival ethnic groups. Read More »

The Sources of Iranian Negotiating Behavior

, August 26, 2010

This report identifies patterns of Iranian culture that are relevant to Western policymakers which have been ignored for decades. Understanding of these cues can better enable the West to negotiate with Iran regarding their nuclear weapons programs, and to convince the Iranian population to liberate themselves. Read More »

Halting Iran’s Nuclear Weapons Program: Iranian Vulnerabilities and Western Policy Options

, July 8, 2007

Iran’s primary vulnerability is the economic sphere. Although half of the Iranian government’s revenues come from the export of crude oil, without foreign investment, production of crude oil will falter. In order to convince Iran to give up the nuclear program, the U.S. and its allies must exploit their economic leverage, backed up by a credible threat of military force against the nuclear program and other targets in Iran as necessary. Read More »

Area Studies: Egypt

ISIS Worries about a Hamas-Egypt Detente

, February 12, 2017

In two recent incidents, Islamic State operatives fired rockets at Israel.In the first incident, on February 6, 2017, a small pro-ISIS Salafi group in the Gaza Strip fired a single rocket; two days later on February 8, 2017, four rockets were fired from Sinai at the town of Eilat. Read More »

The Egyptian President’s Payment to Hamas

, January 31, 2017

In a couple of days, a Hamas security delegation is expected to arrive in Egypt to meet with Egyptian senior intelligence officials on issues concerning Gaza border security. Egyptian officials are demanding the extradition of 20 fugitives tied to terror activities in Egypt and organizations like ISIS and Muslim Brotherhood. Read More »

Hamas’ Terrorism in Egypt

, March 10, 2016

Egypt has officially accused Hamas of training the terror operatives who assassinated Egyptian Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat last year. Hamas now fears that Egypt will declare the movement a terror organization and torpedo Turkey’s efforts to ease the blockade of Gaza. Read More »

Saving Gazans or Saving Gaza’s Terrorist Tunnels?

, December 29, 2015

Fourteen Gaza tunnel diggers were rescued on December 28, 2015 after their smuggling tunnel collapsed, purportedly because of Egyptian flooding of the extensive tunnel system in Gaza. Four days earlier, a militant Palestinian advocacy group, the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), published an article and photographs headlined, “Egypt’s seawater pumping project endangers Gazan’s lives.” Read More »

Egypt Fights a Terror Onslaught

, July 13, 2015

Egypt's endurance is vital to the continued existence of a sane Middle East that opposes the establishment of a caliphate based on sharia law. Some in the West fail to understand Egypt's key role as a country fighting radical Islam. They view Sisi as a military dictator who overthrew an elected president, while they turn a blind eye to the fact that his predecessor, Muhammad Morsi, aimed to turn Egypt into an Islamic dictatorship. Israel is trying to help Egypt as much as possible, pressing Egypt's case in Washington and pursuing security and intelligence cooperation far from the eyes of the media. Read More »

Egypt’s Projection of Military Power in the Middle East

, June 10, 2015

Egypt has abstained for more than 40 years from projecting its military forces as a component of its foreign policy.​ ​After events in Sinai and Libya President Sisi has demonstrated that he advocates the use of force and the projection of force in order to secure vital Egyptian national interests.​ ​Sisi considers Egypt and its moderate allies to be the victims of a colluded effort from jihadi Islam and as such he advocates a united Arab effort to counter this danger. Read More »

Egyptian Field Marshal Abd El-Fattah El-Sisi: A Profile

, February 27, 2014

A profile of the popular Egyptian Commander in Chief. Read More »

Will Gen. Sisi Be the Next President of Egypt?

, October 29, 2013

Observers of the Egyptian scene are repeatedly stressing the change in the mood of the Egyptians towards the United States, from friendship and admiration to open hostility. In turn, the U.S. administration is questioning his legitimacy and presenting him as the leader of a coup and a usurper of power. This creates an opening for a possible Russian comeback in Egypt and through it to a reinforced Russian position in the region. Read More »

Egypt after Morsi: The Defeat of Political Islam?

, July 12, 2013

The Muslim Brotherhood’s 80-year dream to take over Egypt ended in a fiasco, barely one year after one of its own was democratically elected to the office of President of Egypt. The Brotherhood’s loss sends a message that political Islam can be subdued by moderate and liberal forces, providing hope to those struggling against Jihadist and MB-associated groups. The new regime in Egypt allows Israel maintain the status quo with regards to the Egyptian/Israeli Peace Treaty. Read More »

Is Egypt Heading toward a Military Regime?

, May 20, 2013

After President Mohamed Morsi’s “victory” over the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) in August 2012, the Muslim Brotherhood and Morsi himself began signaling their intention to turn Egypt into an Islamic state, arousing the fears of liberals and religious minorities. The opposition turned hostile to the regime and began castigating it, exploiting the newly acquired freedom of the press. Today, Egypt is on the verge of chaos. As Morsi’s government fails to achieve true democracy, respect human rights, restore security, or improve economic welfare, an increasing number of people are calling on the army to return to the political scene as Morsi’s only possible replacement. Read More »

Egypt’s Shiite Minority

, September 23, 2012

Since the Egyptian Revolution, many of Egypt’s 2.2 million Shiites began demanding rights after the repression of the Mubarak era. However, these requests have been met with threats from hardline Salafi groups. The election of Mohammad Morsi radicalized the issue. In response, Iran has distanced itself from Egyptian Shiites. However, with the growing sectarian divide between Sunni and Shia, this could easily strain relations between Egypt and Iran and ignite a regional flashpoint. Read More »

Area Studies: Syria

Does the U.S. Attack in Syria Risk a Regional War?

, April 9, 2017

Commentators in the Arab world fail to find a logical explanation for the behavior of Syrian President Bashar Assad and his decision to use chemical weapons against rebels in the Idlib region. Read More »

Why the Islamic State Is in Retreat

, June 7, 2016

Two years ago the Islamic State’s blitz assault across a swath of land as big as the United Kingdom led to the establishment of the self-proclaimed Caliphate and fragmented both Syria and Iraq. Today, the American-led and the Russian-led coalitions succeeded to contain the advance of the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq because of several factors: attrition, manpower, firepower inferiority, and diminishing financial support. Read More »

Explaining the Islamic State Phenomenon

, January 20, 2016

The Islamic State is a terrorist state with almost all of a typical state’s governing elements. ISIS rules today over a swath of land bigger than the United Kingdom, with a population of almost 10 million. Never in the modern history of the Muslim world has a conflict drawn so many jihadists, who seek to participate in the establishment of an Islamic Caliphate to rule the world after the defeat in battle of the Western powers and their local Arab allies. Read More »

Terror Is Terror Is Terror

, November 23, 2015

Iran keeps promoting its long-term strategic policy in Syria; it views the country as an integral component of its national security. Russia, which has moved urgently to help Assad’s regime survive, has paid a heavy price with the downing of a Russian passenger plane by the Islamic State. Iran is exploiting the West’s weakness, especially the United States’ fecklessness and lack of a clear policy on the Middle East’s future in general and on Assad’s in particular. Read More »

Are There Any Moderate Rebels in Syria?

, November 22, 2015

In the Syrian Civil War, the CIA has assisted those it considers "moderate rebels." In the face of this policy, The Free Syrian Army has chosen to cease its cooperation with other, more Islamist groups like Ahrar Al-Sham, ceding its role as the leader in the fight against the Assad regime to said Islamist groups. Many of the different Islamist coalitions present on the ground today can hardly be defined as being "a moderate opposition." Read More »

Iran’s Stake in Syria

, October 22, 2015

According to Hojjat al-Islam Mehdi Taeb, a former senior official of Iran's Basij militia, Iran's line of defense passes through Syria, and that is why the Iranian government proposed creating battalions of Basij-style militias in Syria.The crisis in Syria is gradually turning from a protracted regional crisis into an international one. For Iran, Syria constitutes the first line of defense against Israel, and also a line of defense for the Shiite population in Lebanon against Islamic State incursion. Read More »

The Disintegration of Syria and Its Impact on Israel

, August 31, 2015

Syria's fragmentation into separate, battling enclaves is intensifying. The two main enclaves are "central Syria," controlled by the Assad regime, and the Islamic State. The nuclear deal between Iran and the world powers has boosted Iran's capacity to support the Assad regime. Iran and Hizbullah's attempts to create a base for terror activity against Israel from the northern Golan Heights continue, relying on released terrorist Samir Kuntar and Druze elements. Read More »

Implications of the Fall of Key Syrian and Iraqi Cities to ISIS

, May 27, 2015

The fall of the major cities of Palmyra in Syria and Ramadi in Iraq to the Islamic State is part of the disintegration of the Middle East’s nation-states​. ​Assad-controlled Syria has shrunk to half its size and lost control of almost all of its borders. The Islamic State (IS) finds itself almost within shelling distance from Baghdad and bordering Saudi Arabia and Jordan, raising acute fears in both countries. The battles have proven that the Shiite armies had no resolve or will to fight the Sunni jihadists. This leaves open the option of Iran and its proxies enlarging their involvement.​ ​ Read More »

Israeli Security Policy in Syria

, April 28, 2015

The attempted Hizbullah attack thwarted in the northern Golan Heights on April 26, 2015, and the air strikes apparently carried out by the Israeli Air Force on April 21 and 24 against military targets in Syria, as reported in Arab media, join a series of similar incidents over the past three years. Apart from isolated cases, Israel has avoided directly responding to reports on the strikes and merely made declarations about its general policy. Hizbullah's involvement in Syria creates legitimacy for anti-Lebanese activity by Sunni radicals. Its deep involvement in the Syrian civil war is nowhere near its conclusion and will continue to exact a heavy price. Read More »

The Syrian Constellation and the Geneva 2 Peace Talks

, January 22, 2014

Since the Egyptian Revolution, many of Egypt’s 2.2 million Shiites began demanding rights after the repression of the Mubarak era. However, these requests have been met with threats from hardline Salafi groups. The election of Mohammad Morsi radicalized the issue. In response, Iran has distanced itself from Egyptian Shiites. However, with the growing sectarian divide between Sunni and Shia, this could easily strain relations between Egypt and Iran and ignite a regional flashpoint. Read More »

Syria: Lessons from Past Weapons Inspections

, September 17, 2013

In light of the Russian/US agreement to eliminate Syria’s chemical weapons, the world’s accumulated hands-on experience in Middle Eastern arms control in Iraq, Iran, and Libya should be remembered. Read More »

The Role of Iranian Security Forces in Syria

, June 20, 2012

Iran views the confrontation in Syria as a critical battleground with the West regarding the reshaping of the Middle East and its own role in the region as a key, vital and influential player. Hizbullah is currently serving under Iran’s command as a part of Assad’s forces, and Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have been involved in Syrian events. Iran’s aid to Assad illustrates Iran’s goal of becoming a power capable of countering the West’s influence. Read More »

Regional Stability

The Legacy of the Taliban: Sunni Allies of Tehran

, April 20, 2017

The U.S. decision to drop an 11-ton bomb, known as the “mother of all bombs,” in Afghanistan against an ISIS target brought back into focus that entire war and the fact that, aside from the problem of ISIS, there has still been a problem in Afghanistan of the Taliban. Read More »

Palestinian ISIS Fighters Push for Engaging Israel

, February 12, 2017

ISIS rocket fire from Sinai targeting Eilat requires further examination. Up until now, ISIS has avoided antagonizing Israel. The Islamic State has a clear set of priorities – the destruction of Arab states established by the “Sykes-Picot Agreement” 100 years ago in order to prepare for the return of the Islamic Caliphate. Read More »

The Islamic State Is Seeping into Jordan

, January 11, 2017

On December 18, 2016, an armed Islamic terror cell carried out an attack in the area of Karak in southern Jordan. Twelve security officers, two Jordanian citizens, and a Canadian tourist were killed. All four members of the cell were killed by the Jordanian security forces. Read More »

Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps: The Revolution Continues beyond Iran’s Borders

, May 17, 2016

After the JCPOA was signed on July 14, 2015, the Gulf States felt all the more threatened by Iran and concerned that the support the United States had given them previously was eroding. Iran, for its part, particularly by means of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), stepped up its involvement in the region - notably in Yemen, making use of Lebanese Hizbullah fighters among others. It also continues its clandestine intelligence activity in the Gulf States. Read More »

Borders Melt-Down: 100 Years After the Sykes-Picot Agreement

, May 16, 2016

The “Middle East” with which we are all familiar is commemorating a curious and even sad 100 year anniversary. A century after the Sykes-Picot Agreement, the Middle East has become a political powder keg and the setting for successive armed conflicts, causing its borders to disintegrate. Read More »

Hamas’ Terrorism in Egypt

, March 10, 2016

Egypt has officially accused Hamas of training the terror operatives who assassinated Egyptian Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat last year. Hamas now fears that Egypt will declare the movement a terror organization and torpedo Turkey’s efforts to ease the blockade of Gaza. Read More »

Earthquakes of the Middle East

, February 24, 2016

The Middle East is experiencing tectonic and dramatic changes that are shaping its landscape into unexpected realities. Five years from now, what Middle East can we expect? It would not be adventurous to say that we will be confronted with a new map with new entities born or re-born. Read More »

The Iranian Penetration of Iraqi Kurdistan

, January 21, 2016

Iran has positioned itself as a reliable military backer of Iraqi Kurdish forces, filling a vacuum the West has left as a result of its tepid support. Iranian penetration of Kurdistan allows Tehran to render it less likely that its major adversaries, including Israel and the U.S., will gain a secure foothold in a region that has a 400-mile border with Iran. Expectations of Kurdistan becoming an ally of Israel, America, and Europe may be in danger if the West continues to prioritize Iraqi and Turkish interests over those of the Kurds. The writer taught at Salahaddin University in Iraqi Kurdistan in 2012-2013. Read More »

The True Face of the Palestinians’ Leader

, January 13, 2016

There is a continued perception of Mahmoud Abbas as the “moderate” representative of the Palestinian cause. This stance represents a misunderstanding of Abbas’ position, which continues to encourage terror, but not terror through means of firearms. Such encouragement is responsible for the latest wave of terror in Israel. Read More »

The Failures of the International Community since Sykes-Picot

, January 4, 2016

Mark Sykes and Francois Georges-Picot divided the Middle East between Britain and France in secret in the midst of World War I in a way that did not take into account the demographic, socio-cultural and religious aspects of the local peoples. Several Arab tribes found themselves dispersed into different states. Today, across the region, authority has collapsed and people are reaching for their older identities - Sunni, Shiite, Kurd. Sectarian groups, often Islamist, have filled the power vacuum. All the unrest in the Arab world is internal, social, religious and tribal, with no link to the Arab-Israeli conflict. Read More »

A Bad Agreement with Iran Will Undermine Middle East  Stability

, March 2, 2015

The big winner of the international coalition’s war on Islamic State is Iran. The war is not only weakening a bitter enemy of Shiite Iran, but also strengthening Iran’s main ally in the region – Syria, as well as Hizbullah.​ ​The agreement will also likely have negative repercussions for the possibility of advancing a diplomatic process with the Palestinians.The Iranian regime will not change in nature. The subversion outside of Iran and the push to expand its influence will continue and even intensify. While some in the West speculate that the regime will moderate over time, it is just as likely that the Revolutionary Guards will keep gaining power and complete their takeover of the Iranian Revolution. Read More »

Iran’s Fortunes Rising in a Middle East Vacuum

, March 19, 2014

Iran is implementing a plan to expand its influence over the Middle Eastern region. As a primary sponsor of Hizbullah and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), the “long arm” of Iranian influence may be attempting to establish itself as a regional power player, in the wake of the U.S.’ declining prestige. Read More »

How Nuclear Talks Help Iran Dominate the Middle East

, February 25, 2014

The nuclear talks are creating an atmosphere where the economic pressure will subside as Iran gains time to fill in the missing pieces of its nuclear program. Iran’s foreign policy is gaining momentum as Gulf States are persuaded to align with Iran. Ongoing negotiations with the United States are proceeding at a relaxed pace that allows Iran to continue working towards its strategic goals. Read More »

The Fundamentals of Israel's Strategic Environment

, August 22, 2013

There is a view that developments since the advent of the Arab Spring have completely altered the way Israel should look at its national security needs for many decades to come. However, while many of the essential facts of Israeli security remain the same, the changes in neighboring and hostile regimes, such as power vacuums being filled by terrorist organizations and additional weaponry being smuggled into conflict zones, result in a need for re-evaluation of Israeli strategy. Read More »

The Kurdish Awakening in Syria

, August 15, 2013

Regional stability may be threatened by the rise of independent Kurdish populations in the Middle East. A “Greater Kurdistan” is no longer a remote possibility. This reality poses challenges for all of the states with large Kurdish populations: Turkey, Iraq, Syria, and Iran. Read More »

Strategic Shifts in the Middle East

, July 1, 2013

Various regional and strategic issues represent threats and concerns to the State of Israel, including peace negotiations with the Palestinian Authority, Israeli policy towards Syria, and Israeli opinion regarding the threat of a nuclear Iran. Read More »

The Iranian Role in the 2012 Gaza Conflict

, December 2, 2012

Iran’s supply of rockets to the Palestinians shows a lack of fear of Israel and the Western powers. The rift between Sunnis and Shia that is evident in various Middle Eastern conflicts makes clear that Iran will confront Sunni states like Egypt and Turkey over issues of regional hegemony and influence. These changes are becoming clear not only in actions in Gaza, but in the Syrian conflict as well. Read More »

The Future of Kurdistan: Between Turkey, the Iraq War, and the Syrian Revolt

, August 30, 2012

For the first time in modern Kurdish history, an exclusively Kurdish-controlled enclave has developed on the border with Kurdish areas of Turkey. The Free Kurdish Army, responsible for claiming this land, is continuing their mission to gain control of Kurdish cities in Syria. With these new developments, the emergence of a “Greater Kurdistan” is no longer a remote possibility. This area is a potential land bridge for many of the conflicts in the region; therefore control of this land is important to many of the powers currently embroiled in regional conflicts. Kurdistan has the potential to become a new flashpoint in the Middle East. This report provides an overview of the Kurds and Kurdistan. Read More »

The Role of Iranian Security Forces in Syria

, June 20, 2012

Iran views the confrontation in Syria as a critical battleground with the West regarding the reshaping of the Middle East and its own role in the region as a key, vital and influential player. Hizbullah is currently serving under Iran’s command as a part of Assad’s forces, and Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have been involved in Syrian events. Iran’s aid to Assad illustrates Iran’s goal of becoming a power capable of countering the West’s influence. Read More »

Majority and Minorities in the Arab World

, January 3, 2012

The current sociopolitical eruption in the Arab world, known as the “Arab Spring”, is the result of the total failure of Arab states to create a unifying national narrative and establish modern egalitarian polities. The 90 years since the Arab states were established have been fraught with discord between the different communities, political and economic discrimination, uprisings, military coups, subversion, and conflicts between the states themselves. However, this eruption has opened the door to Islamic rule, which threatens to destabilize the region. Read More »

Turkey, the Global Muslim Brotherhood, and the Gaza Flotilla

, November 30, 2011

This report resents the results of an investigation into the role played by the Global Muslim Brotherhood and its Turkish allies in the May 2010 Gaza Flotilla which involved a violent altercation between passengers on one of the ships and Israeli naval forces. Read More »

Iran’s Race for Regional Supremacy: Strategic Implications for the Middle East

, September 21, 2011

Iran has accelerated its quest for regional supremacy through its mobilization of both Shiite and Sunni terror surrogates, including Hizbullah in Lebanon, Shiite militias in Iraq and in the Gulf, the Taliban in Afghanistan, and Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Al Aksa Martyrs’ Brigades in the Palestinian territories. These actions could destabilize the entire region, creating a threat to global security. Read More »

Ethnic Conflict

Ethnic Opposition to Iran’s Regime Is on the Rise

, July 24, 2016

Since June 2016, Iran has been enduring terror attacks and assassinations which are a reaction to Iran’s ongoing repressive policy against its ethnic minorities, such as Kurds (who are distinguished from Iran’s Shiite population by their language and Sunni beliefs) and Arabs (who are also mainly Sunni). Iran’s security forces have been cracking down on the Arabs, augmenting this population’s discontent along with its separatist aspirations. The Iranian regime, which so far has been spared the regional repercussions of the Arab Spring – or Islamic Awakening as the regime calls it – is now starting to feel the effects. Read More »

Anti-Semitism and Anti-Zionism: Same Idea, New Cloak

, June 19, 2016

Comparing anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism and showing that the latter is the modern form of the former may be easy if we simply use the U.S. State Department 2010 definition of anti-Semitism that states that “Anti-Semitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.” Read More »

British Policy, Jews and Israel

and , May 4, 2016

A battery of anti-Semitic comments by British Labour Party members has led to dismay among the Jewish community and a probe within the labor party. These unpleasant comments – ranging from associating Hitler with Zionism to blood libels claiming the Islamic State is an Israeli creation – do not necessarily reflect, however, a change from the traditional British mindset. Read More »

The Internal Palestinian Fight for Jerusalem

, April 14, 2016

East Jerusalem, despite being linked with both Israel and the West Bank, has developed an independent political system. The main public activity in East Jerusalem occurs at the plaza of the mosques on the Temple Mount where the Islamic movements are the dynamic political forces. Both regional powers and Islamic movements vie for control of the plaza and the city’s Arab population. Read More »

Dying for Allah

, March 23, 2016

The sensitivity to criticism of the Islamic fundamentalist attitude on the “death for Allah” value, which has been fully adopted by the Palestinian cultural code, is a further instance of our difficulty in understanding a different culture, which leads us to project our own values onto the other in a mirror-perfect image. The value of “dying for Allah” has been adopted by Radical Islam’s distorted interpretation of Islam’s tenets. Read More »

Palestinian Authority Funding to Terrorists and their Families

, March 3, 2016

The Palestinian Authority (PA) is responsible for one more nefarious form of incitement to attack Jews – paying large bounties to the attackers and their families. Rather than being deterred by the harsh consequence of their terrorist attack at Israel’s hand, the perpetrators are actually encouraged and incentivized by the Palestinian leadership. Read More »

Have the Palestinians Renounced the Peace Process?

, February 18, 2016

The Palestinian Foreign Minister, Riyad Malki, recently stated that the Palestinians “will never go back and sit again in direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.” Many would brush aside such a statement as another example of routine Palestinian bravado and propaganda. In fact, Malki’s announcement must be taken with the utmost seriousness. Read More »

The Iranian Penetration of Iraqi Kurdistan

, January 21, 2016

Iran has positioned itself as a reliable military backer of Iraqi Kurdish forces, filling a vacuum the West has left as a result of its tepid support. Iranian penetration of Kurdistan allows Tehran to render it less likely that its major adversaries, including Israel and the U.S., will gain a secure foothold in a region that has a 400-mile border with Iran. Expectations of Kurdistan becoming an ally of Israel, America, and Europe may be in danger if the West continues to prioritize Iraqi and Turkish interests over those of the Kurds. The writer taught at Salahaddin University in Iraqi Kurdistan in 2012-2013. Read More »

The Psychology of "Lone Wolf" Palestinian Arab Violence

, January 14, 2016

The outbreak of violence by mostly young individual Palestinian Arabs has been attributed to a variety of explanations that range from nationalistic motives to more religious ones. Religious and nationalistic factors can both act as triggers for violence, and what is termed “incitement” appears to be an interactive process that combines a causative psychological igniting factor with pre-existing supportive cognitive fuel. Read More »

Sunni vs Shiite: A Cold War Simmers in an Ancient Hatred

, January 10, 2016

The execution of Nimr Baqir al-Nimr, a Shiite cleric and bitter opponent of the Saudi regime who regularly and publicly insulted the royal family, has triggered an unprecedented crisis between Tehran and Riyadh. The roots of the crisis are to be found in the long-standing feud between Sunni and Shiite, which dates from the very beginning of Islam. Read More »

Iranian-Saudi Relations before the Abyss

, January 6, 2016

The execution in Saudi Arabia of Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr, one of the top Shiite religious leaders in the kingdom and the one who led the Shiite protest during the Arab Spring, brings tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia to a new peak. This tension is rooted in Sunni-Shiite disputes that go back to the early days of Islam. Iran and Saudi Arabia are already in a “cold war” over influence in the Middle East and beyond, a conflict which is expected to intensify in the coming years. Read More »

How to Block the Ongoing Palestinian Terror Wave

, January 3, 2016

The Palestinian terror wave is not letting up, and fighting it more effectively requires a close examination of its roots and its objectives. Read More »

The “Spontaneous” Intifada Is Orchestrated by the Palestinian Leadership

, November 29, 2015

The Palestinian leadership is attempting to portray the current intifada as a kind of popular, spontaneous struggle that expresses the population’s despair over the political situation. In reality, it is an intifada supported and directed by the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah (the Palestinian Authority-PLO-Fatah) and Gaza (Hamas). This Palestinian strategy has been used and seen before as a tool through whose use the Palestinian leadership has tried to achieve its political goals. Read More »

Who Were the Palestinians Killed in Attacks during October 2015?

, November 26, 2015

On November 1, 2015, Hamas posted a statement on its English website, quoting the Palestinian health ministry, accusing the Israel Defense Forces of killing 72 Palestinians in October 2015. Left out of the release were the names of the dead. Of the dead, 82% were killed during Palestinian-initiated violence. Hamas’ counting of these attackers and murderers to boost the number of people killed by the “oppressive Zionist regime” is Hamas’ disingenuous way of falsely demonizing Israel and seeking to undermine Israel’s ability to defend itself. Read More »

Palestinian Incitement to Violence and Terror: Nothing New, But Still Dangerous

, November 1, 2015

The one central and overriding component of today's wave of violence and terror is the incitement of an aroused Arab public. Incitement and manipulation of a particular community - worshipers at mosques, the younger generation in kindergartens, schools, and colleges, and the general adult community through the electronic media - have become one of the major tactical weapons in the arsenal of Arab societies in general and the Palestinian leadership in particular. A culture of mistrust and hate, fanned by constant religious and public incitement, inevitably leads to violence and undermines the concept of peaceful relations. A leadership that openly and officially sanctions and encourages such incitement cannot come with clean hands to the international community and complain about lack of progress in the peace process. Read More »

The Islamic State’s Rules for its Christian Subjects

, September 10, 2015

The Islamic State has formulated a "covenant" in which it defines the rights and duties of the non-Muslim population, mainly of Christian faith, living in its boundaries. In return for their right to live safely under Islamic state rule, the Christians commit not to build or renovate their town's churches or convents. In August 2015, the Islamic State destroyed the Mar Elyan Monastery in Alkaryatayn, one of the oldest Christian historical shrines in the Middle East. Read More »

Draft International Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Anti-Semitism

, May 6, 2015

The international community has never considered criminalizing anti-Semitism as an international crime, in a manner similar to the criminalization of genocide, racism, piracy, hostage-taking, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and terror.​Attempts to attach to it Islamophobia are clearly artificial and transparent, and fail to do justice to what clearly is a unique phenomenon that must be dealt with independently. To this end, and with a view to correcting what is clearly a vast international injustice, the draft document presented here is intended to universally criminalize anti-Semitism within the world community, in the form of an "International Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Anti-Semitism." Read More »

How the UN Mixes Anti-Semitism, the Holocaust, and Israeli War Crimes

, February 5, 2015

The most insidious argument is the ignorant and twisted claim that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict exacerbates anti-Semitism. At the root of this assertion is the idea that the victims of anti-Semitism have a responsibility to ameliorate the pathology of their enemies.​ ​How is it possible that in a matter of days the UN apparatus went from discussing anti-Semitism, to the Holocaust, to Israeli war crimes? Tragically, it is because the lessons of the Holocaust have never been absorbed, and the stage is being set for a repetition. Read More »

The Kurdish Awakening in Syria

, August 15, 2013

Regional stability may be threatened by the rise of independent Kurdish populations in the Middle East. A “Greater Kurdistan” is no longer a remote possibility. This reality poses challenges for all of the states with large Kurdish populations: Turkey, Iraq, Syria, and Iran. Read More »

The Iranian Role in the 2012 Gaza Conflict

, December 2, 2012

Iran’s supply of rockets to the Palestinians shows a lack of fear of Israel and the Western powers. The rift between Sunnis and Shia that is evident in various Middle Eastern conflicts makes clear that Iran will confront Sunni states like Egypt and Turkey over issues of regional hegemony and influence. These changes are becoming clear not only in actions in Gaza, but in the Syrian conflict as well. Read More »

Egypt’s Shiite Minority

, September 23, 2012

Since the Egyptian Revolution, many of Egypt’s 2.2 million Shiites began demanding rights after the repression of the Mubarak era. However, these requests have been met with threats from hardline Salafi groups. The election of Mohammad Morsi radicalized the issue. In response, Iran has distanced itself from Egyptian Shiites. However, with the growing sectarian divide between Sunni and Shia, this could easily strain relations between Egypt and Iran and ignite a regional flashpoint. Read More »

The Future of Kurdistan: Between Turkey, the Iraq War, and the Syrian Revolt

, August 30, 2012

For the first time in modern Kurdish history, an exclusively Kurdish-controlled enclave has developed on the border with Kurdish areas of Turkey. The Free Kurdish Army, responsible for claiming this land, is continuing their mission to gain control of Kurdish cities in Syria. With these new developments, the emergence of a “Greater Kurdistan” is no longer a remote possibility. This area is a potential land bridge for many of the conflicts in the region; therefore control of this land is important to many of the powers currently embroiled in regional conflicts. Kurdistan has the potential to become a new flashpoint in the Middle East. This report provides an overview of the Kurds and Kurdistan. Read More »

Majority and Minorities in the Arab World

, January 3, 2012

The current sociopolitical eruption in the Arab world, known as the “Arab Spring”, is the result of the total failure of Arab states to create a unifying national narrative and establish modern egalitarian polities. The 90 years since the Arab states were established have been fraught with discord between the different communities, political and economic discrimination, uprisings, military coups, subversion, and conflicts between the states themselves. However, this eruption has opened the door to Islamic rule, which threatens to destabilize the region. Read More »

Nuclear and Non-Conventional Weapons

One Year after the Iran Nuclear Deal

, July 21, 2016

Iran is reaping the benefits of the deal, while the West pays the price of its weakness. In the meantime, we are all living with the consequences. Read More »

How Close Are We to Unconventional Terror Attacks by ISIS? The Dirty Bomb Scenario

, May 19, 2016

How serious is threat the threat of an ISIS nuclear or radiological attack, and in the absence of clear leads and intelligence materials, how can we assess this threat? Read More »

Vital Points on the Iran Deal: Major Flaws and Positive Elements

and , August 27, 2015

The nuclear agreement with the main world powers is set to unilaterally and unconditionally grant Iran everything it has been seeking without any viable quid-pro-quo from Iran to the international community. Read More »

Questions and Answers about the Iranian Nuclear Agreement

, August 26, 2015

The signing of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action raises many questions: Is the plan a good deal? Did the possibility of reaching a better deal exist? After the deal’s signing, which avenues remain open to Israel and the West to get more out of the deal? Read More »

The Nuclear Deal: No Pause in Iran's Vow to Destroy Israel

, August 16, 2015

Even following the JCPOA negotiations, Ayatollah Ali Khameini, Iran’s Supreme leader, remains the most prominent agitator for Israel’s destruction. The Islamic Republic’s virulently Anti-Israel and Anti-Western rhetoric has remained largely unabated. Read More »

Why We Must Fight Against the Iran Deal

, August 14, 2015

Iran will only need six months to obtain enough material to produce nuclear weapons during the first ten years of the deal. Furthermore, it allows for the continued Iranian pursuit of regional hegemony. Read More »

Iran: Challenging Our Missile Program Means Crossing a Red Line

, July 27, 2015

Following the UN Security Council’s endorsement of the Iran deal, Iran has made clear that the deal will not infringe upon its missile program or grant inspectors access to military facilities - both things that are essential to Iran’s national security concept. Read More »

The Lessons of the Syrian Chemical Weapons Discovery

, May 18, 2015

In early May, inspectors from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) reported that they had located traces of sarin-type chemical weapons and ricin-type biological weapons in at least three sites in Syria which the Assad regime had not reported. This discovery could have implications for a potential Iran deal. Read More »

The Flawed Underpinnings of the New Nuclear Understandings with Iran

, April 3, 2015

The underlying flaw in the new nuclear understandings between the P5+1 and Iran is the fact that it leaves Iran’s vast nuclear infrastructure intact. Read More »

Iran’s Defiance: Flaunting a Cruise Missile with 2,500 Km. Range

, March 10, 2015

On March 8, 2015, Iran unveiled the Soumar long-range ground-to-ground cruise missile, which has a range of 2,500 kilometers. Exhibiting the missiles now was meant to coincide with sensitive nuclear talks. Tehran is signaling to the West that it has no intention of giving up its long-range missile program. Read More »

Anatomy of a Bad Iran Deal:    A Preliminary Assessment

, February 12, 2015

The best way to evaluate the impending nuclear agreement is to look at the statements of high-levels officials who have been involved in the negotiations. While not all of the details of the agreement have been made public, elements have been disclosed in the international media that are deeply worrying. Read More »

The Weak Link in a Nuclear Agreement with Iran

, June 11, 2014

One striking feature appearing in the leading commentaries on the Comprehensive Agreement being negotiated is the stress being placed placing on the role of inspections in assuring the international community that Tehran will not be permitted to obtain nuclear weapons. However, these inspections cannot be expected to deter Iran, as it does not view itself as a “status quo” power. Read More »

How Nuclear Talks Help Iran Dominate the Middle East

, February 25, 2014

The nuclear talks are creating an atmosphere where the economic pressure will subside as Iran gains time to fill in the missing pieces of its nuclear program. Iran’s foreign policy is gaining momentum as Gulf States are persuaded to align with Iran. Ongoing negotiations with the United States are proceeding at a relaxed pace that allows Iran to continue working towards its strategic goals. Read More »

The Internal Iranian Struggle After the Geneva Agreement

, January 14, 2014

The Geneva nuclear agreement between Iran and the P5+1 has become a source of tension in Iran between the conservatives and Revolutionary Guard on one side, and President Hassan Rouhani, the nuclear negotiating team, and those considered the reformist camp on the other. The regime’s security establishment continues a crackdown on the opposition and social networks in an effort to protect Iran’s revolutionary Islamic nature. The intensity of public support for Rouhani is of no significance when it comes to Iran’s nuclear progress, nor is it likely to have substantial implications for the state of civil society and human rights in Iran. Read More »

Conflicting Expectations on the Geneva Deal with Iran

, December 11, 2013

Questions of interpretation have arisen from both sides about the Geneva document’s obligations to the relevant parties. Parties disagree on what the document means for nuclear breakout, U.S.-imposed sanctions on Iran, and uranium enrichment Read More »

The Emerging Geneva Agreement with Iran

, November 12, 2013

Eliminating Iran’s 20-percent-enriched uranium, but allowing the Iranians to continue to produce 3.5-percent-enriched uranium is an unacceptable option if the goal of the West is to prevent Iran from advancing a nuclear weapon. Allowing Iran to enrich to the 3.5-percent level will not address the threat emanating from Iran’s latest generation of faster centrifuges and the scenario of a fast dash by Iran to weapons-grade uranium, known as “nuclear break-out.” Read More »

Iran vs. the West: Endgame?

, October 15, 2013

Despite direct negotiations with the United States, Iran has no intention of halting their nuclear enrichment program. Iran could be within a few months of building a bomb. Read More »

Syria: Lessons from Past Weapons Inspections

, September 17, 2013

In light of the Russian/US agreement to eliminate Syria’s chemical weapons, the world’s accumulated hands-on experience in Middle Eastern arms control in Iraq, Iran, and Libya should be remembered. Read More »

Understanding the Iranian Nuclear Challenge

, March 24, 2013

Over the last decade, a clear international consensus has slowly emerged that Iran was not just pursuing a civilian nuclear program, but rather was seeking nuclear weapons. The IAEA has raised concerns about the possible existence of certain areas of military research in the Iranian nuclear program, which, when coupled with Iran’s expansionist goals, presents a challenge to regional stability. Negotiations and proposals to protect the International Community from Iranian nuclear weapons must take into account all aspects of Iranian nuclear research. Read More »

The Rise of Nuclear Iran: How Tehran Defies the West

, 2011

In the West, liberal politicians and pundits are calling for renewed diplomatic engagement with Iran, convinced that Tehran will respond to reason and halt its nuclear weapons program. Yet, countries have repeatedly tried diplomatic talks and utterly failed. Gold examines these past failures, showing how Iran employed strategic deception and delay tactics to hide its intentions from the West. He argues that Western policymakers underestimate Iran s hostility toward us and explains why diplomacy will continue to backfire, no matter which party or president is in power. Read More »

Can Cold War Deterrence Apply to a Nuclear Iran?

, March 1, 2011

The Obama Administration’s policy of Cold War-style deterrence with regards to Iran fails to take into account various issues. The ideology of the Iranian leadership, the threat of a polynuclear Middle East, and the idealization of martyrdom are all issues which do not fit into a model of cold war style deterrence. Furthermore, should nuclear weapons become a reality in the region; it is possible that they may filter down to quasi-states, terrorist organizations, and rival ethnic groups. Read More »

Halting Iran’s Nuclear Weapons Program: Iranian Vulnerabilities and Western Policy Options

, July 8, 2007

Iran’s primary vulnerability is the economic sphere. Although half of the Iranian government’s revenues come from the export of crude oil, without foreign investment, production of crude oil will falter. In order to convince Iran to give up the nuclear program, the U.S. and its allies must exploit their economic leverage, backed up by a credible threat of military force against the nuclear program and other targets in Iran as necessary. Read More »

Hizballah’s Rocket Campaign Against Northern Israel:
A Preliminary Report

, August 31, 2006

From July 13 to August 13, the Israel Police reported 4,228 rocket impacts inside Israel from rockets fired by Hizballah. No geographical area in the world has sustained such a large quantity of rocket strikes since the Iran-Iraq war in the early 1980s.One-fourth of the rockets that landed within Israel landed within built-up areas. Israel suffered great numbers of fatalities and injuries, as well as extensive damage to infrastructure. This article discusses the challenge to national security posed by this type of weapon, and identifies areas where defense may be improved. Read More »

Homeland Security Articles from Daily Alert

Airport Security

Israeli Expert Questions New Airport Security Rules (March 23, 2017)
Belgium Takes Tips from Israel on Airport Security (November 23, 2016)
After Brussels Attack, World Looks to Israel as Model for Airport Security (March 23, 2016)
Sniffer Mice Are Being Trained in Israel to Detect Explosives at Airports (June 19, 2015)

Social Media Investigation

How Israel Spots Lone-Wolf Attackers (June 9, 2017)
Israeli Monitoring of Social Media Thwarts Terror Attacks by 2200 Palestinians (April 19, 2017)
Israeli Soldiers Scour Social Media to Stop Violence (March 10, 2017)
EU Eyes Israeli Technologies for Spotting Militants (July 20, 2016)
Israel is Using Social Media to Prevent Terrorist Attacks (April 21, 2016)

Civilian Self-Defense

Civilian Self-Defense is Esential to Combat Modern Terrorism (June 14, 2017)

Terrorism Prevention

Israel Speeds Up Camera Placements in West Bank in Effort to Deter Terrorism (June 18, 2017)
Israel Capitalizes on Expertise in Counter-Terrorism (June 7, 2017)
Netanyahu: Israel Taking Steps to Deal with Terrorists (January 10, 2017)
How to Prevent the Next “Lone Wolf” Terror Attack (August 9, 2016)
What the World Can Learn from Israel after July’s Wave of Deadly Attacks (August 4, 2016)
Israel’s Counterterrorism Lessons For Europe (July 19, 2016)
Can an Orlando-Style Attack Happen in Israel? (June 17, 2016)
Police Tactics, Intelligence-Sharing Tip Scales in Jerusalem’s War on Terror (March 31, 2016)

Other

Israeli “Eye in the Sky” Drone Can Watch 80 Sq. Km. in Real Time (June 16, 2017)
Israeli Biometric Startup Sees Surge in Demand as Security Woes Weigh (July 28, 2016)
IDF to Defend Against Cyber Attacks on Vital Infrastructure (February 18, 2016)

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