Well into its ninth year, the conflict in Syria is a devastating humanitarian tragedy and a source of regional instability with serious implications for U.S. national security. Last year, Congress directed USIP to facilitate the bipartisan Syria Study Group (SSG) in order to examine the current state of the conflict and make recommendations on the military and diplomatic strategy of the United States going forward.

The release of the SSG’s final report follows months of extensive consultations across a broad range of stakeholders and experts, as well as travel to the region. It represents the consensus of all twelve Congressionally-appointed SSG members and offers a bipartisan roadmap for the way ahead.

The Syria Study Group hosted a panel discussion and presentation of the final report’s assessments and recommendations. The event included keynote addresses from Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), who spearheaded the creation of the bipartisan study group, and Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT).

Join the conversation on Twitter with #SyriaStudyGroup.

Welcoming Remarks

Keynote Speakers

Overarching U.S. Strategy, Syria Study Group Co-Chairs

Panel Discussion with Syria Study Group Members

Closing Remarks

Related Publications

Local Cross-line Coordination in Syria

Local Cross-line Coordination in Syria

Thursday, October 3, 2019

By: Natasha Hall; Benjamin Smith; Thomas McGee

Throughout the eight-year-long conflict in Syria, the movement of people and goods—including vital foodstuffs, medicines, equipment, and fuel—has often been severely restricted by periods of prolonged fighting. Yet in many areas, local arrangements, historical circumstances, and key actors have facilitated trade and movement across the lines of conflict. This report examines four cross-line areas in Syria and draws lessons for how these local dynamics might affect the resolution of the larger conflict and these communities in the long term.

Type: Peaceworks

Conflict Analysis & Prevention; Fragility & Resilience

The U.S. ‘Cannot Avoid or Ignore’ the War in Syria

The U.S. ‘Cannot Avoid or Ignore’ the War in Syria

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

By: USIP Staff

A new, congressionally mandated study on Syria policy urges the United States to maintain a military presence and sanctions pressure against the Assad regime, and to help build alternative governance in areas beyond the regime’s rule. The bipartisan Syria Study Group, appointed by Congress, stresses that ISIS in Syria remains a potent threat to the region and to U.S. national security. The Syria Study Group discussed its report at USIP, which at Congress’ direction facilitated the group’s work.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Global Policy; Reconciliation; Violent Extremism

Syria Study Group Final Report

Syria Study Group Final Report

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

By:

The United States cannot avoid or ignore the conflict in Syria. From the outset of hostilities, minimizing American involvement in the war and safeguarding U.S. national security interests have proven to be incompatible goals. This will remain the case for the foreseeable future. The essential question before American policymakers is not whether the United States should keep or with- draw its forces in Syria, but what strategy and mix of tools will best protect the United States from the conflict’s reverberations and advance American interests. This report sets out such a strategy.

Type: Special Report

Global Policy; Reconciliation

View All Publications