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inFOCUS Quarterly

Fall 2015

Twenty-Five Years Since the First Gulf War


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Liberte, Egalite, Fraternite

by Shoshana Bryen
November 17, 2015 | American Thinker

Secretary of State Kerry said of Friday's terror attack in Paris, "These are heinous, evil, vile acts. Those of us who can must do everything in our power to fight back against what can only be considered an assault on our common humanity." President Obama used the phrase "common humanity" as well.

They are wrong.

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Options in Syria: What will Russia Decide?

by Shoshana Bryen and Stephen Bryen
November 16, 2015 | Technology & Security: How Things Really Work

Russia's options in Syria are poor. While Vladimir Putin intervened to save his client Assad and Russian access to warm-water ports, it is beginning to look as if air power won't do the job for Russia any more than it will for the U.S. – and the Russians are using much higher volumes. In addition, it appears that Russia will suffer now from pushback, the first incident of which might have been the jetliner downed over Sinai.What can Putin do? Cutting a deal with Saudi Arabia may be the least of several not-very-good options.

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Israel Has No Iran Strategy

by Gabriel Scheinmann
November 6, 2015 | The National Interest

After a week of meetings in Israel, one thing is clear to me: Israel has no Iran strategy. Seemingly spent from the losing public campaign against the Iranian nuclear deal, not even the passage of "Adoption Day" on October 18 roused Israeli officials from their post-deal slumber. Israelis reluctantly see themselves as bystanders to their fate—a position reinforced by Russia's intervention in Syria—relegated to pleading with an Obama administration that is still crowing from its resolute achievement. Focused on abating the recent wave of Palestinian terrorism, Israel seems listless in the post–Iran deal era.

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by Shoshana Bryen
November 4, 2015 | American Thinker

It could have been a coincidence.  A Russian airbus with 224 people – mainly tourists – flying from Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt to St. Petersburg, Russia could simply have come apart in midair, killing all aboard.  It would have been one heck of a coincidence, though, considering the players who would have wanted it to disintegrate and the constellation of agendas that would be advanced by a well-placed bomb.

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Understanding Russian Strategy

by Shoshana Bryen
November 3, 2015 | Defense News

It is unsurprising that Arab leaders and Israel, traditional American allies, are listening carefully to Putin. Even Afghanistan and Pakistan are making overtures to the Kremlin. It behooves the American government to understand Russia's strategy - not to agree with it, not necessarily to cooperate with it or with him, but to understand the logic behind it, which is not altogether contrary to American interests.

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The Holocaust is OVER

by Shoshana Bryen
October 26, 2015 | Gatestone Institute

History provides a framework for understanding today's politics. The Mufti of Jerusalem was not only a kindred spirit of Hitler; he spent much of the war in Berlin as the guest of like-minded practitioners of Jew-hatred. If what happened in the 1930s and 1940s, however, is allowed to turn our attention from the current threats to the Jewish State, we will have granted them a belated victory they do not deserve.

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The Middle East "Peace Process" - Oh No, Not Again

by Shoshana Bryen
October 19, 2015 | Gatestone Institute

West Bank Palestinians are, and are known to be, the most privileged refugees in the world. They are not running; they don't have to. Unlike Syrians, no one is dropping barrel bombs on them, starving them or refusing them entry. West Bank Palestinians have homes, food, jobs, education and relative security.

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What Goes Around, Goes Around

by Shoshana Bryen
October 9, 2015 | American Thinker

America has rescued some countries, flattened others, aided some governments, ousted others and been on various sides of local wars and disagreements. Usually sequentially. Right now they're not sequential and the same countries can be pursuing ends the U.S. both does and does not seek or condone.

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Articles Archive


Turkey Downs Russian Jet Near Syrian Border

by Michael Johnson
November 24, 2015 at 1:35 pm

A Turkish F-16 fighter jet shot down a Russian Su-24 with an air-to-air missiles on Tuesday near the Syrian border with Turkey. Turkish officials claimed the plane had violated the country's airspace, but the Russian government has disputed the claim, strongly condemning Syria's northern neighbor.

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Palestinian Terrorists Kill Five in Israel

by Michael Johnson
November 19, 2015 at 3:36 pm

Palestinian terrorism targeting Israelis entered its third month this week with a series of attacks that took the lives of five people on Thursday. The death toll marked the bloodiest day since unrest began on September 14th.

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Kurdish Fighters Recapture Sinjar

by Michael Johnson
November 13, 2015 at 11:56 am

Kurdish fighters made a successful push to recapture Sinjar this week, freeing the Iraqi city from Islamic State. The Yazidi minority living in the area hope that the advance of Peshmerga forces will finally conclude Islamic State's reign of terror, which has costs thousands of lives over the past 15 months.

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German Bank Fined For Iran Sanctions Violations

by Michael Johnson
November 5, 2015 at 3:12 pm

American financial regulators announced on Wednesday they had reached a settlement with Deutsche Bank worth $258 million for violating U.S. sanctions between 1999 and 2006. The penalty comes as Congress considers new measures that could allow the victims of terrorism to earn compensation from such fines.

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German Defense Minister Meets Kurdish Leaders

by Michael Johnson
October 28, 2015 at 3:37 pm

German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen met with Kurdish leader Masoud Barzani on Tuesday, during her second official visit to Northern Iraq. While in Erbil, the Defense Minister promised continued humanitarian and military support for the war against Islamic State.

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Emboldened Syrian President Visits Moscow

by Michael Johnson
October 21, 2015 at 1:59 pm

Syrian President Bashar al-Asad made an unannounced trip to Moscow on Tuesday, visiting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The two leaders discussed the Kremlin's military intervention in Syria amid their alliance's growing momentum against rebel forces and ISIS.

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