The Institute invited leading experts from the U.S. and across the Middle East to identify key vectors of influence Syria’s neighbors are bringing to bear on the conflict; to forecast how the on-going conflict in Syria will affect the delicate and volatile regional balance of power; and to examine how the Syrian opposition and the Syria regime are factoring in regional and cross-border dynamics.

The Institute invited leading experts from the U.S. and across the Middle East to identify key vectors of influence Syria’s neighbors are bringing to bear on the conflict; to forecast how the on-going conflict in Syria will affect the delicate and volatile regional balance of power; and to examine how the Syrian opposition and the Syria regime are factoring in regional and cross-border dynamics.

The series was edited by USIP’s Steven Heydemann, Senior Adviser for Middle East Initiatives; and Scott Lasensky, a Senior Program Officer.

Peace Brief Series

The Gulf States and Syria
by Emile Hokayem | November 22, 2011

This brief examines the interests, connections and dimensions of Syria's popular uprising in the Arab Gulf states. Emile Hokayem is the Senior Fellow for Regional Security at the International Institute for Strategic Studies-Middle East based out of Mamana, Bahrain.

Watching from the Sidelines: Israel and the Syrian Uprising
by Ehud Eiran | November 16, 2011
This brief was written by Ehud Eiran, a post-doctoral fellow at the Department of International Relations at Haifa University, Israel. Eiran has served as an assistant to former Prime Minister Ehud Barak’s Foreign Policy Adviser and as a research fellow at the Belfer Center at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.

Jordan and the Current Unrest in Syria
by Edward W. Gnehm, Jr. | November 8, 2011
The Government of Jordan is deeply concerned about the turmoil in Syria, fearing the spillover effect and knowing Syria’s historic capacity to undermine Jordanian internal stability. Edward Gnehm, the Kuwait Professor of Gulf and Arabian Affairs at the George Washington University, looks at the impact the turmoil in Syria could have on Jordan..

Syrian Uprising: Looking In, Looking Out
by Amr al-Azm | October 25, 2011
Amr al-Azm is an active member of the Syrian opposition and a professor of Middle East history and anthropology at Shawnee State University. This Peace Brief aims to examine the deteriorating relationship between the Syrian regime and its neighbors and the possible emergence of a “Benghazi scenario” involving Turkish military engagement.

From Endearment to Estrangement: Turkey’s Interests and Concerns in Syria
Peace Brief by Yigal Schleifer | October 25, 2011
This study on Turkey was written by Yigal Schleifer, a Washington-based journalist and analyst covering Turkey. He was based in Istanbul between 2002 and 2010 as a correspondent for the The Christian Science Monitor and Eurasianet.org. He is also the author of “Istanbul Calling”, a blog about Turkish foreign and domestic affairs.

Regional Dynamics of the Syrian Uprising: The Impact on Lebanon and Hezbollah
by Mona Yacoubian | October 18, 2011
This study on Lebanon was written by Mona Yacoubian, a Senior Advisor at the Institute’s Center for Conflict Management and director of USIP’s Lebanon Working Group.

Baghdad’s Wary Support for the Syrian Status Quo
by Sean Kane and Dr. Elie Abouaoun | October 18, 2011
Iraq’s reaction to the popular uprising in Syria is mostly determined by the chaos its Shiite-led government believes would follow the sudden collapse of Bashar al-Assad’s regime. This Peace Brief outlines how Baghdad possesses limited ability to influence the course of events in Syria, but uses this to provide modest support to the Assad regime. This Peace Brief is part of a series examining the regional dimensions of Syria’s popular uprising.

 

Analysis

  • Syria’s Uprising and the Path Ahead
    November 23, 2011 | On the Issues by Steven Heydemann
    Violence in Syria is escalating, but the country is not yet at the brink of civil war.
  • Syria's Opposition Takes Form
    October 2011 | On the Issues by Steven Heydemann
    There is little doubt the creation of a unified front among the various dissident groups in Syria is a positive development for their cause. But it remains unclear if it reflects a true "coalescing" of all the different rebel voices, or if the group can grow into an effective political force capable of being seen as a viable alternative to the Assad regime.
  • Human Rights in Syria
    July 2011 | Congressional Testimony by Mona Yacoubian
    USIP Middle East Senior Program Officer, Mona Yacoubian, testified before the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission at the Cannon House Office Building in Washington, DC. The views expressed are those of the author and are not at the U.S. Institute of Peace, which does not take policy positions.
  • Eye on the Middle East and North Africa
    Experts from the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) are closely following developments throughout the Middle East and North Africa. In a series of reports and interviews, they cover a wide range of issues.

Events and Multimedia

  • "The Assad Regime Will Collapse"
    Event News Feature | October 2011

    Four members of the newly formed Syrian National Council (SNC) appeared at USIP in Washington for “Voices from the Front Lines: an Update on the Syrian Opposition.” The members are determined to create a representative, effective group that is a viable alternative to the regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria.
  • Sen. John McCain: U.S. Must Sustain Momentum of Arab Spring
    News Feature by Gordon Lubold | May 2011
    Senator John McCain sees the Arab Spring as the most consequential event since the fall of the Ottoman Empire and for the U.S., a “moment when we must clearly define what we stand for, and not just what we are against.”
     

Explore Further

 

Related Publications

After Beirut Blast, What’s Next for Lebanon’s Broken Political System?

After Beirut Blast, What’s Next for Lebanon’s Broken Political System?

Friday, August 7, 2020

By: Dr. Elie Abouaoun; Mona Yacoubian

A massive explosion ripped through the Port of Beirut on August 4, sending shockwaves through the Lebanese capital, killing approximately 200, injuring thousands, and leaving upwards of 300,000 homeless. This comes with Lebanon already on the brink of economic collapse, struggling to address a COVID outbreak, and as the trust gap between citizens and the state is wider than ever. Although in the immediate aftermath of the explosion some suggested Lebanon had been attacked, the cause of the explosion is likely much more banal: government negligence resulted in thousands of pounds of explosive chemical material to be improperly stored in the port for years. USIP’s Elie Abouaoun and Mona Yacoubian examine what this means for Lebanon’s beleaguered political system, the long-term implications for the country, and how the international community has responded so far.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Democracy & Governance

Lebanon's Unraveling Could Upend the Region and U.S. Interests

Lebanon's Unraveling Could Upend the Region and U.S. Interests

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

By: Mona Yacoubian

While Americans are understandably preoccupied with multiple crises at home, a catastrophe is looming in Lebanon with significant implications for the United States. Roiled by a major debt crisis that has been compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic and economic lockdown measures, Lebanon is rapidly spiraling toward the worst-case scenario: a failed state on the eastern Mediterranean.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Democracy & Governance

View All Publications