Syria and Iran: what AEI scholars are writing

ICYMI: Recent pieces on Syria and Iran by American Enterprise Institute (AEI) scholars, Danielle Pletka, John Bolton, and Paul Wolfowitz:

“Iran's relationship with terrorist groups . . . . is operational, financial, political and military.  Iranian government officials have been known to direct, manage and support attacks throughout the world.” . . . .“The time has come to undercut Iran at its own political game, all the while holding Tehran responsible for the terrorism it sponsors. If Hezbollah wants to continue as Iran's proxy, then aid to Lebanon needs to be reconsidered. If some among the Palestinians wish to continue to play footsie with Iran, then we, and the Arabs, and the Europeans need to ensure that Iran is their only donor.”  Danielle Pletka, AEI Vice President for Foreign and Defense Policy Studies (contact: dpletka@aei.org or through Alex Della Rocchetta at adr@aei.org or 202.862.7152) in her testimony on Iran’s Support for Terrorism in the Middle East to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee

“Washington must stop subcontracting Syria policy to the Turks, Saudis and Qataris. They are clearly part of the anti-Assad effort, but the United States cannot tolerate Syria becoming a proxy state for yet another regional power. . . . We have an interest in helping to lead Syria toward a stable future, not beholden to any nation.”  Pletka in a recent Washington Post piece, The U.S. Must Help Syria
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“We must not permit terrorists like Al Qaeda or Hezbollah in next-door Lebanon, rogue states or a radical Syrian successor regime to acquire [Syria’s chemical, biological and nuclear] capabilities. The time available is short, and the risks we face in attempting to secure or destroy Syria’s WMD are high.”  Former UN ambassador John Bolton is an AEI Senior Fellow (radio and print onlycontact: christine.samuelian@aei.org) in America and its allies must prepare to secure Syria's weapons of mass destruction
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From former Deputy Secretary of Defense, Paul Wolfowitz, now a Visiting Scholar at AEI (contact: julissa.milligan@aei.org or 202.862.5905):

“US policy seems fixated on the idea that a negotiated transition to a Syria without Assad can avoid the dangers that could accompany an opposition victory. But there is little sign the Russians intend to force such an outcome and less reason to think the regime in Damascus would accept it. But hardest of all is to understand how the opposition could accept any “transition” that left some power in the hands of Assad’s cronies.” Wolfowitz in Our dithering has played into Assad’s hands

“What the Syrian opposition needs most is support for training, equipping and organizing the Free Syrian Army. By providing that support, the U.S. might also be able to persuade the opposition to provide assurances about a post-Assad Syria that would encourage fence-sitters – including probably many in the Syrian Army, as well as members of the Alawite and Christian minorities – to abandon the regime. That will require working with neighboring countries like Turkey, but it doesn’t need Russian or Chinese approval.” Wolfowitz in Clinton’s legacy: Libya or Syria?

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About the Author

 

Danielle
Pletka

  • As a long-time Senate Committee on Foreign Relation senior professional staff member for the Near East and South Asia, Danielle Pletka was the point person on Middle East, Pakistan, India and Afghanistan issues. As the vice president for foreign and defense policy studies at AEI, Pletka writes on national security matters with a focus on Iran and weapons proliferation, the Middle East, Syria, Israel and the Arab Spring. She also studies and writes about South Asia: Pakistan, India and Afghanistan.


    Pletka is the co-editor of “Dissent and Reform in the Arab World: Empowering Democrats” (AEI Press, 2008) and the co-author of “Containing and Deterring a Nuclear Iran” (AEI Press, 2011) and “Iranian influence in the Levant, Egypt, Iraq, and Afghanistan” (AEI Press, 2012). Her most recent study, “America vs. Iran: The competition for the future of the Middle East,” was published in January 2014.


     


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  • Phone: 202-862-5943
    Email: dpletka@aei.org
  • Assistant Info

    Name: Alexandra Della Rocchetta
    Phone: 202-862-7152
    Email: alex.dellarocchetta@aei.org

 

John R.
Bolton
  • John R. Bolton, a diplomat and a lawyer, has spent many years in public service. From August 2005 to December 2006, he served as the U.S. permanent representative to the United Nations. From 2001 to 2005, he was under secretary of state for arms control and international security. At AEI, Ambassador Bolton's area of research is U.S. foreign and national security policy.

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  • Phone: 202.862.5892
    Email: christine.samuelian@aei.org
  • Assistant Info

    Name: Christine Samuelian
    Phone: 202.862.5892
    Email: christine.samuelian@aei.org

 

Paul
Wolfowitz
  • Paul Wolfowitz spent more than three decades in public service and higher education. Most recently, he served as president of the World Bank and deputy secretary of defense. As ambassador to Indonesia, Mr. Wolfowitz became known for his advocacy of reform and political openness and for his interest in development issues, which dates back to his doctoral dissertation on water desalination in the Middle East. At AEI, Mr. Wolfowitz works on development issues.


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  • Assistant Info

    Name: Hemal Shah
    Phone: 202-862-5889
    Email: hemal.shah@aei.org

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