Syria’s Civil War Is Far from Over, and the U.S. Can Still Affect Its Outcome

Feb. 19 2020

With Syrian forces advancing this month into the northwestern province of Idlib—the last major rebel stronghold—it seems that the civil war may finally be nearing an end. But, argues Jennifer Cafarella, the truth is much messier: Damascus has made these recent gains only after a grueling ten-month offensive, and Turkey has now poured thousands of troops into the area, some of whom have already clashed with the Syrian army. Bashar al-Assad’s previous victories, meanwhile, may yet prove Pyrrhic:

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Read more at Foreign Affairs

More about: Al Qaeda, Bashar al-Assad, ISIS, Kurds, Syrian civil war, Turkey, U.S. Foreign policy

Israel Has Dodged a Constitutional Crisis, but Only Temporarily

April 3 2020

Two weeks ago, then-Speaker of the Knesset Yuli Edelstein refused to hold a vote for his replacement, insisting that, in keeping with precedent, the new speaker should only be chosen after a governing coalition has been formed. As his move prevented the newly installed Israeli parliament from resuming its normal business, the Supreme Court tried to break the impasse with two unprecedented interventions into the legislative branch. To Evelyn Gordon, Edelstein acted out of a “genuine and serious concern” about constitutionally questionable moves by his opponents, even if the court was justified in its order that elections for the new speaker take place.

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Read more at JNS

More about: Benjamin Netanyahu, Benny Gantz, Israeli politics, Israeli Supreme Court, Knesset