• Expert Commentary

    International Affairs: Iran’s ISIS policy

    16 January 2015.  By Dina Esfandiary, Research Associate, Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Programme and Ariane Tabatabai This article assesses Iran’s strategy in dealing with the threat of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). It examines the implications of the rise of ISIS in Iran’s immediate neighbourhood for Tehran’s policies in Syria and Iraq and investigates how each of these countries affects Iranian national interests. It provides an overview of the major events marking...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Steven Simon: Defeat Iran in Syria?

    08 January 2015.  I’ve been tracking the arguments in favour of the United States intervening as a combatant in Syria’s civil war. They are varied and all make a certain amount of sense, even where they fail to explain how US interests would be served by intervention. This isn’t to say that US strategic interest is the sole legitimate premise for intervention, only that it’s reasonable to think that a calculation of interest...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Mark Fitzpatrick: Rouhani is keen to strike a nuclear deal

    06 January 2015.  Given the strength of hardliners in Iran and the red lines that have been laid down by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, I have been pessimistic about the prospects for a negotiated settlement to the nuclear crisis. In a good start to the new year, however, President Hassan Rouhani has threatened to go over their heads by putting the matter directly to the Iranian people. In an astonishing speech at...

  • Expert Commentary

    IISS in the Press

    05 January 2015.  After rapid advances, Isis may have staying power The Guardian, 26 December If 2014 can be described as the year of the Islamic State, it is a fair bet that the jihadi group Barack Obama has pledged to ‘degrade and ultimately destroy’ will continue to dominate headlines from the Middle East in 2015. Past investments and current oil interests mean the US has been prioritising Iraq over Syria. The dysfunctional Iraqi army, humiliated...

  • Expert Commentary

    Al-Monitor: Sanctions, sabotage, science delay Iran's missile program

    17 December 2014.  Interview with Michael Elleman, Senior Fellow for Regional Security Cooperation While attention has focused on curbing Iran’s ability to produce fissile material for a nuclear weapon, sanctions, sabotage, technical problems and political calculation have combined to set back Iran’s development of missiles that could potentially deliver such a weapon. Michael Elleman, an expert on missiles at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, told Al-Monitor in an interview Dec. 16 that the Iranians...

  • Manama Voices

    Dina Esfandiary: Discussing the extension of nuclear negotiations

    07 December 2014.  By Dina Esfandiary, Research Association, Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Programme Iran has been at the top of the agenda during this year's Manama Dialogue. From the extension of the nuclear negotiations to recent efforts against Daesh in Iraq, Tehran's activities in the region continue to baffle and frighten its neighbours. In Tehran however, the focus is internal. But for Iran to make progress on domestic issues, it must first get...

  • Adelphi Books

    Chapter Two: Iran, the Gulf States and the Syrian Civil War

    07 December 2014. 

    An essential driver of the Syrian civil war has been the involvement of Iran, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and, to a lesser extent, the United Arab Emirates in every aspect of the struggle.

  • Manama Voices

    Nicholas Redman: The changing fortunes of regional powers

    07 December 2014.  The tenth Manama Dialogue has been an excellent opportunity to reflect on the changing fortunes of the region over the past ten years. What was most interesting to Nicholas Redman, Senior Fellow for Geopolitical Risk and Economic Security, was how some regional powers have experienced both a rise and a fall in that time. In 2004, the first year of the Dialogue, Egypt was a strong, self-confident, militarily well-prepared...

  • Manama Dialogue

    Reflections on 10 Years of Regional Security Changes: Mark Fitzpatrick

    07 December 2014. 

    The IISS Manama Dialogue 2014: 10th Regional Security Summit
    Fifth Plenary Session
    Mark Fitzpatrick
    Director, Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Programme, IISS

  • Manama Dialogue

    Strategic Priorities in the Middle East: Sh Khalid Al Khalifa

    06 December 2014. 

    IISS Manama Dialogue 2014: 10th Regional Security Summit
    First Plenary Session
    Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa 
    Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bahrain

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