Commentary

Barack Obama Putin G8How Effective is the US-Russia Deal on Syria? The deal between Russia and the United States over Syria is more an agreement to disagree rather than a pact between two powers which see eye to eye. But its impact could be profound for Barack Obama's foreign policy legacy.
16 Sep 2013

Putin 2012 thumbnailControlling Syria's Chemical Weapons: Why the US Should Call Putin's Bluff Critics accuse President Obama of walking into a Russian trap. But even partial implementation of the disarmament plan reduces the likelihood that chemical weapons are used, without foreclosing any American options.
12 Sep 2013

Obama NSS ConferenceSyria and Obama's 'Credibility Spiral' With no clear strategy or set of political objectives, President Obama had set red lines for chemical weapons use in Syria. This has locked him into credibility spiral which was difficult for him to free from, even after a resolution to the chemical weapons question.
10 Sep 2013

Erdogan and AssadAnkara Embraces Regime Change: Zero Problems and the Syrian Crisis Turkey's recent foreign policy goal of being at peace with her neighbours is now in tatters as it lobbies for full-scale military intervention in Syria. Unlike the United States, Turkey's strategy now involves regime change, not just punitive military strikes.
10 Sep 2013

Antimicrobial ResistanceThe UK Five Year Antimicrobial Resistance Strategy 2013-2018 The new UK Five Year Antimicrobial Resistance Strategy is published today. Its cross-government approach reflects growing international interest in Antimicrobial Resistance as an economic as well as health concern.
21 Aug 2013

UN Security CouncilThe Use of Chemical Weapons: The Legal Case for Intervention in Syria Any intervention in Syria must be legally sound and must be aimed at a more long-term solution rather than a short term punitive exercise.
4 Sep 2013

Angela Merkel and Vladimir PutinGermany's Syria Policy: The Art of the Possible Unlike France, Germany is the other major European power that has stopped short of military intervention in Syria. Nevertheless, the country has adopted a tough diplomatic posture towards Syria and could deploy militarily if there is an international mandate.
3 Sep 2013

Ruby Loftus Screwing a Breech Ring painting by Laura KnightReview: The Second World War as Seen Through the Laura Knight Portraits A major exhibition features more than forty of Laura Knight's portraits and sketches including several which confirm her as an important commentator on the 1939-45 war.
3 Sep 2013

UK and US troops in IraqParliament's Decision on Syria: Pulling Our Punches The UK Parliament's decision not to intervene militarily in Syria marked an important watershed in UK defence and security policy. The consequences will be examined with interest by allies and potential adversaries alike.
30 Aug 2013

Bashar al-Assad posterAssad's Allies are Only Just Warming Up If the West must attack Syria, then it must be limited to give Assad a bloody nose and nothing more. Otherwise they shift the tide in favour of the rebels and elicit greater support from Assad's allies, who have greater reach into Syria.
30 Aug 2013

FSA Syria AleppoMilitary Action in Syria: Plucking Legal Justifications out of Thin Air Creative reasoning is being deployed to justify the legality of military intervention in Syria. But the the legal case for strikes against Syria is far from being either obvious or clear-cut.
29 Aug 2013

Syrian Soldier - Chemical Weapons SuitWestern Options to Respond to the Use of Chemical Weapons in Syria Western governments are now discussing when, not whether to attack Syria after reported use of chemical weapons. What would be the scope of any intervention mission, and what would be the targets?
28 Aug 2013

ReaperEyes over Syria: Using Drones to Monitor Atrocities The Syrian government has rejected 'utterly and completely' US claims that there was 'undeniable' proof of a regime-initiated chemical attack last week. To determine the truth, and deter further atrocities, we should deploy unarmed and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV's).
27 Aug 2013

Free Syria Army FlagHow Might Syria Come Back to the UK? Day by day, the Syrian Civil War is attracting foreign fighters, particularly from Europe. While there is no clear evidence of such individuals being sent back to carry out terrorist acts, historically similar jihadist battlefields have produced terrorist threats of one form or another.
19 Aug 2013

Hasan Rouhani sqHoneymoon in Tehran: Rouhani's first 100 days Since his election as Iranian President, many Western commentators welcomed Hassan Rouhani as a 'moderate'. However, his cautious choice of a new Cabinet point to an administration focused on economic reconstruction rather than political change.
15 Aug 2013

India - Foreign Policy - FlagThe Future of Indian Sea power: Navalists versus Continentalists This week, India unveiled major introductions to its navy. They are aimed at applying pressure to China, its chief strategic adversary, but will this be done at the expense of its border defences in the Himalayas?
15 Aug 2013

Turkey Flag 2Explaining Ergenekon: Civil Military Relations in Turkey's Post-Coup Era For many in Turkey, the case against leading officers represents an end to the military's meddling in civilian politics. But the AKP government has failed to pursue with the same vigour, more prosaic changes to Turkish law that would help instil more civilian oversight over the Turkish armed forces.
7 Aug 2013

Al-Shabaab SomaliaAl-Qa'ida's August Surprise? US officials are speaking of a level of terrorist chatter as high as that prior to 11 September 2001. With Embassy closures across the Muslim world, large-scale prison breaks in Iraq, Libya and Pakistan, the threat tempo is rising. Is Al-Qa'ida planning an August surprise?
5 Aug 2013

Iraq counter-insurgencyThe Shia and the Battle for Survival It could be argued that for the Shia of Iraq - who have consolidated power after decades, if not centuries of oppression - the Syrian conflict has transformed itself from one simply about realpolitik or a battle for the region to a battle for the very survival of the Shia.
30 Jul 2013

60 years on, why should we care about the Korean War? This weekend marks the sixtieth anniversary of the end of the Korean War. Why should it matter? Two RUSI Journal articles examines the unanswered questions from this seminal moment in the Cold War.
27 Jul 2013

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The views expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect those of RUSI
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