Author Archives: jonathanspyer

Erdogan’s Bait and Switch in Northern Syria

Jerusalem Post, 31/7 The latest events in northern Syria constitute a bold move by the Turkish leadership to deal with a most pressing problem, from their point of view. That problem is not the continued existence of the Assad regime, … Continue reading

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Lecture in Jerusalem, 23/7

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Opening the ‘gates of evil’

Sunni Arabs see deal as facilitating further Iranian regional subversion, confirming US withdrawal from the Middle East Jerusalem Post, 18/7 The response in the Arabic-speaking world to the conclusion of a deal between the P5+1 countries and the Islamic Republic … Continue reading

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Coming of age in Sinai

Jerusalem Post, 10/7 The Sinai-based Islamic State affiliate Wilayat al-Sina (Sinai Province) claimed responsibility for the firing of three Grad rockets at Israel on July 3. This attack, which caused no casualties, came closely after a large-scale assault by the group against … Continue reading

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The Ghosts of Old Baghdad

Jerusalem Report, 8/7 A few hours in the Shorja open market in Baghdad can teach you a lot – about the Middle East’s past, its present and its apparent future. What’s to be found there is informative. What is absent – equally so. My … Continue reading

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Iraq falls apart as Iran-backed forces keep Islamic State at bay

The Australian, 4/7 Baghdad in the early summer has the atmosphere of a city under siege. Armoured vehicles carrying heavy machineguns are patrolling the area surrounding the international airport. The nearest positions of Islamic State are just 65km away. The … Continue reading

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John Le Carre and the Last of Empire

The British novelist  David Cornwell  (John Le Carre) is best known for his fictional depictions of the British intelligence services during the period of the Cold War.  That this constitutes the main focus of Le Carre’s considerable prominence is probably … Continue reading

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