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Walid Phares

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  • The Free Iran we can work with

    by Walid A Phares

    The Iranian national resistance was able to show the world that despite systematic criticism and regime propaganda efforts, there is an alternative that has popular support and is capable of challenging the medieval regime currently ruling the country. In short, there is another Iran that continues to flourish and grow in exile. The choice is up to the United States and the West: Continue to feed the ambitions and the life of the Jihadi regime in Tehran—or help its alternative replace it with a pluralistic, secular and peaceful government.


  • Washington’s strategic mistake in Iraq: Abandoning Iran's exiled opposition

    by Walid A Phares

    Though MEK was removed from old U.S. and European terror lists, which had handicapped the resistance group, Iran’s offensive against them proves that Washington’s abandonment of this organized force in Iraq is turning into a victory for the Ayatollahs. Free from an active challenge to their power, whether it be inside or outside the borders, the Iranian regime is now concentrating on consolidating its domination in Iraq—and from that country, its influence in Syria and Lebanon. Washington’s strategic error is enormous…it would be the equivalent of the British removing General De Gaulle and his Free French Forces from England while Hitler was preparing for his onslaught

  • The Khomeinist Dome: Iran's Larger Nuclear Strategy

    by Walid A Phares

    The Khomeinist dome is about preparing for the nukes before they are displayed and claimed. It is about signaling to the West that once the greater Iranian power is asserted, there will not be a first indefensible bomb. Rather, Iran will jump to the level of unstoppable power with a vast network of retaliation as deterrence will have been achieved. Unfortunately, Western posture towards Tehran has only helped in the building of the dome: sanctions worked but were limited, all Iran’s other military systems were unchecked, and its interventions in the region unstopped. Worse, a nuclear deal with the U.S. injected time and energy into the regime’s veins.

  • Media elite's extreme fascination with the Jihadist individuals’ personalities hurts the victims of the Boston bombing

    by Walid A Phares

    When the argument was made in The War of Ideas that the U.S. Middle East Studies elite had been causing failures in foreign policy and psychological distress on citizens for providing faulty expertise on the roots of Jihadi terror, some of the book’s projections had not yet been reached. They now have been. A Boston bombing victim Adrianne Haslet-Davis was frustrated by NBC’s repetitive use of the names of the bombers who caused her injury last year.

  • Arab moderates' ‘Iran problem’ is in Washington

    by Walid A Phares

    "Without any guarantees, the United States began lifting sanctions and the White House threatened to veto any new sanctions leveled by Congress. Predictably, the Khomeini regime resumed its build-up of strategic weapons, mainly missiles, and continued meddling in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and most worrisome to the Gulf, in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen" 

  • THE LOST SPRING IS COMING

    by Walid A Phares

    My new book of 2014 is taking analysis and projections even further. It explains why the West and the United States failed to predict the Arab Spring and why they failed to handle it effectively. The book also addresses the direction these upheavals are headed and how to correct U.S. policy before irreparable catastrophe strikes the region. From bloody and expanding civil wars in Syria, Iraq and Libya to the fight against terror in Egypt, Lebanon and Tunisia; from genocide in Sudan, Darfur and beyond to the persecution of Christian and ethnic minorities and the rise of al Qaeda and Hezbollah; so much in the region appears hopeless, but one must also recognize the emergence of reformers, women, minorities and civil societies.

  • Iran' Nuclear Deal: Washington’s greatest mistake

    by Walid A Phares

    Washington’s “new beginnings” in the region moved American Mideast policy in a backward direction on two major tracks. The first derailment was to partner with the Muslim Brotherhood, not the secular NGOs, in an attempt to define the future of Arab Sunni countries. The second was to engage the Iranian regime, not its opposition, in attempt to define future relations with the Shia sphere of the region. These were strategic policy decisions planned years before the Arab Spring, not a pragmatic search for solutions as upheavals began. Choosing the Islamists over the Muslim moderates and reformers has been an academically suggested strategy adapted to potential interests—even though it represents an approach contrary to historically successful pathways.  In June 2009, President Obama sent a letter to Iran’s Supreme Leader asking for “engagement.” This move, coupled with Obama’s abandonment of the civil revolt in Iran that same month, sent a comforting message to the ruling Khomeinists: The United States is retreating from containment and will not support regime change in Iran. That undeniably emboldened Tehran to go on the offensive in the region after less than a decade of status quo.


  • The Strategic Consequences of an East-West Ukrainian Split

    by Walid A Phares

    With freed former PM Yulia Tymoshenko rallying protesters in Kiev and President Yanukovych defiantly taking to the airwaves in Kharkov, the possibility of an East-West Ukrainian split remains dangerously high.

  • A Miracle on the Nile

    by Walid A Phares

    A miracle on the Nile has been accomplished this week. Tens of millions of Egyptian citizens voted.

  • A King for the oppressed—Not a King for the oppressors

    by Walid A Phares

    As Americans and humanity celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy of justice, equality and freedom, there are millions around the world who continue to suffer discrimination and oppression of the kind the African American pastor and leader struggled against.

  • The Nile of Democracy will Flood Egypt's Jihadists

    by Walid A Phares


    Credit: Wiki Commons

    As soon as the Egyptian military asked President Mahmoud Morsi to step down and dismantle his Islamist regime, millions in the streets of Cairo and other Egyptian cities and towns celebrated the end of what they felt was a dangerous, fascistic regime. But despite an overwhelming popular support for the ousting of the Muslim Brotherhood from power, some U.S. leaders, starting with President Barack Obama and later joined by Republican senator John McCain, expressed their rejection of the move because they argued it was “directed by the Egyptian military against a democratically-elected government.”


  • Woolwich’s Jihadi butchers: their non-spontaneous words matter

    by Walid A Phares

    The savage slaughtering of a British soldier on the streets of Woolwich, England is not a common random crime; it is an act of terror, an expression of relentless war that is inspired by a jihadist ideology and sponsored by an international network of Salafist indoctrination. The reason we are making this assertion hours after the killing is to simply repeat what we have underscored in reports on similarly-inspired bloody attacks in the West in recent years. Rather, it is to prevent disorienting a shocked public by propaganda being diffused by apologists spreading intellectual chaos, covering up for the real culprit, and confusing audiences in Great Britain and around the world with irrelevant arguments. We will hear some pushing the argument of root causes being the Western presence in Muslim lands.


  • How the State Department Gets the Niqab Wrong

    by Walid A Phares

    The State Department recently issued a report denouncing what it called "a spike in anti-Islamic sentiment in Europe and Asia." It said that "Muslims also faced new restrictions in 2012 in countries ranging from Belgium, which banned face-covering religious attire in classrooms, to India where schools in Mangalore restricted headscarves." The State Department report confuses religious persecution, which is to be condemned, with politicization of religions, which is a matter of debate and includes strategies of which the U.S. government should not be a part nor within which the U.S. government should side with one faction against another. If countries ban the right to pray, broadcast and write about theology, any theology of any religion, this would be against human rights. Belgium and India do not ban religions per se. In fact, they are more tolerant regarding diverse religious practice than most of the members of the Organization of the Islamic Conference. The Obama administration is not criticizing secular European and Asian Governments for deciding to ban prayer or theologically philosophical dissertations, but rather criticizing these countries for banning the hijab or niqab in public places.


  • Boston Terror: Part of a War That Has Not Ended

    by Walid A Phares

    Two devices were set off at the terminal phase of Boston’s historic marathon. They blew up, killing and wounding a number of citizens, children and adults. According to law enforcement sources, more bombs were set to explode but did not. These facts, and maybe more, compelled authorities to identify the bombing as a “Terror Act,” and both the administration and Congress are dealing with the killings as such an attack. The main focus should be to determine who was behind the attack because the reason for it was pretty obvious: it was to terrorize the American public and to intimidate the U.S. government. The “why” is clear; the “who” remains to be determined, and it could be quickly unveiled.

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