Iran

U.S. President Donald Trump signs a document reinstating sanctions against Iran after announcing the U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal at the White House in Washington on May 8, 2018.

Trump Misses Being Part of the Iran Deal

His administration wants to trigger the JCPOA’s snapback mechanism, but he probably can’t do that from the outside.

A protester confronts security forces during an anti-government protest at Parliament on August 10 in Beirut, Lebanon.

Lebanon Needs Transformation, Not Another Corrupt Unity Government

If the United States lets France take the lead, the Lebanese people will get more political paralysis, cosmetic reforms, and Hezbollah control of state institutions.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and China's President Xi Jinping attend a meeting in Shanghai on May 22, 2014.

Iran’s Pact With China Is Bad News for the West

Tehran’s new strategic partnership with Beijing will give the Chinese a strategic foothold and strengthen Iran’s economy and regional clout.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Chinese President Xi Jinping review troops during a welcoming ceremony.

Trump Has Pushed Iran Into China’s Arms

Hard-liners in Tehran have called for closer ties to China for years. The U.S. withdrawal from the nuclear agreement gave them what they wanted.

Special Representative for Venezuela Elliott Abrams appears as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during a news conference on March 31 in Washington. Abrams was chosen to succeed Brian Hook as U.S. Special Representative for Iran this week.

Iran Policy in Holding Pattern Before Elections

The sudden departure of Brian Hook leaves the Trump administration scrambling to snatch some victory after two years of “maximum pressure” on Iran.

The Iranian military launches a missile during a naval exercise on June 18. The Iranian navy successfully tested new short- and long-range cruise missiles, coinciding with a rebound in tension with the United States, which seeks to extend the arms embargo against Iran.

Document of the Week: U.S. Pushes Doomed Iran Resolution at U.N.

Trump’s Iran gambit is sweeping, punitive, and has little chance of success.

A boy herds sheep in the Nineveh Plains of northern Iraq on Nov. 11, 2016.

Iraq’s Indigenous Peoples Can’t Face Another Conflict

Despite the Islamic State’s retreat, Assyrians fear for their security in the Nineveh Plains. They need stronger support from Washington and Baghdad.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi visits Kirkuk to follow operations against the Islamic State on June 2.

Iraq’s New Prime Minister Wants to Control the Iran-Backed Militias. It Won’t Be Easy.

Mustafa al-Kadhimi is better placed than many of his predecessors to cement the Iraqi state’s authority, but independent armed groups are pushing back.

Iranian women holding national flags and pictures of Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, take part a pro-government demonstration in Tehran on Nov. 25, 2019.

To Secure His Legacy, Khamenei Is Packing Iran’s Government With Young Radicals

The supreme leader’s youth-washing strategy could keep detente with the United States off the table for years.

Al-Qaeda linked al-Shabab recruits walk down a street on March 5, 2012 in the Deniile district of Somalian capital, Mogadishu, following their graduation.

In Somalia, Iran Is Replicating Russia’s Afghan Strategy

Iranian forces are supporting al-Shabab and allegedly offering bounties. The U.S. government must stop Tehran before it further destabilizes the Horn of Africa.

Lebanese riot police guard a bank in Beirut on April 28.

The United States Is Pushing Lebanon Further Into Iran’s Embrace

The Lebanese economy is collapsing, and the risk of conflict is rising—but Washington has failed to grasp why Iranian influence is spreading or the measures needed to stop it.

Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump wearing “QAnon” t-shirts wait in line before a campaign rally at Freedom Hall in Johnson City, Tennessee, on Oct. 1, 2018.

QAnon Goes to Iran

Restart, a fringe Iranian dissident group, shows how conspiracy spreads—and what that means for U.S. politics.

Civil Rights activists carrying “I Am a Man” placards are blocked by National Guardsmen during a protest in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1968.

Our Top Weekend Reads

America’s founders missed an opportunity to abolish slavery, attacks on the press are increasing in democratic societies, and Trump’s maximum pressure campaign against Iran isn’t working.

Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf gives an address during the 2017 Iranian presidential election.

Iran Is Becoming Immune to U.S. Pressure

Trump’s so-called maximum pressure campaign has empowered hard-line figures in Tehran, marginalizing those eager to take the diplomatic route.

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