DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 30, 2012
President Bashar Assad Sunday, Jan. 30, pulled in the Syrian Republican Guard and the 4th armored division commanded by his brother Maher Assad from the north to Damascus, debkafile reports exclusively. He deployed them in battle positions in the capital for the first time following an intelligence tipoff that one of the armored division commanders had been won over by Western powers and persuaded to stage a coup d'etat in time for Tuesday's UN Security Council meeting on Syria.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 15, 2011
Retired presidential adviser Dennis Ross in his first public appearance reveals that Barack Obama has charted a new Mid East policy which cares fully for Israeli, Saudi security needs but freezes them out of Washington policy-making. The Palestinian issue is put on ice indefinitely.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 7, 2011
Tuesday, Dec. 6, the US, France and Britain went into concerted action to contain the Syrian crisis before it detonates a regional conflict and deteriorates into civil strife. At the same time, Syria and its neighbors sharply intensified their war preparations, fully expecting diplomacy to fail. In Geneva, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told the leaders of Syrian opposition groups that the Obama administration had stepped up its pressure on Assad and now referred to his regime as the "Assad gang."
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 21, 2011
Libya may well be plunged in even bloodier strife after Muammar Qaddafi's passing. The meddling foreign hands backing rival individuals, militias and tribes will only exacerbate the divisions and animosities riddling the interim government of the NTC and the country at large.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 14, 2011
The Israel-Hamas prisoner swap for Gilad Shalit and the exposure of the plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador opened two new US fronts against Iran: The relocation of Hamas HQ from Damascus to Cairo which deprived Iran and Syria of their Palestinian lever and a pretext for the Saudis to declare war on the Islamic Republic.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 14, 2011
The Obama administration has never wavered from its ambition to see the Muslim Brotherhood in government in Egypt or its policy of linking Egypt's destiny with a resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It hopes to discourage the burgeoning Muslim Brotherhood from casting its fate with Tehran on the grounds that Iran has no influence on Israel whereas American leverage on Jerusalem is substantial.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 9, 2011
By ordering Turkish warships to escort aid ships to Gaza and stop Israel's offshore gas exploitation, Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan is muscling his way into the eastern Mediterranean and taking his dispute with Israel to the brink. He is also challenging Greece and Cyprus. Cairo and Riyadh are also worried about his intentions.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 19, 2011
After ruling out direct military intervention, most governments concerned in the drive to oust Bashar Assad find that arming the rebels and pumping thousands of Sunni volunteers into Syria are the only feasible option. But before this plan is up and running, he is expected to preemptively employ the Lebanese Shiite Hizballah for heating up the Lebanese-Israel border or even spark an all-out conflagration between the two long-time foes which would quickly ignite the Golan border between Syria and Israel.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 13, 2011
Thursday night, Aug. 11, US President Barack Obama and Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan agreed to set Syrian President Bashar Assad the deadline of Aug. 27 for extinguishing the popular uprising against his rule and starting to implement genuine democratic reforms. This decision followed Erdogan's report to Obama on the Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu's six-hour conversation with Assad Tuesday, Aug. 9. Turkey has called up reserves for transfer to the Syrian border.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 8, 2011
As his tanks and artillery stormed the eastern Syrian town of Deir al-Zour, killing 100 civilians in one day, the US and Turkey Sunday night, Aug. 7 began to turn the screw on President Bashar Assad: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton asked Turkey's foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu to press Syria to "return its military to the barracks," during his visit to Syria Tuesday. The Syrian ruler with Iranian backing spurned the ultimatum even before the minister reached Damascus.
DEBKAfile Special Report July 28, 2011
Russia has threatened to freeze the "reset" ties with the United States, which recently produced valuable cooperation and friendly understandings between the two powers in vital global arenas. debkafile's Moscow sources report the areas most affected are likely to be the Israel-Palestinian dispute, Moscow's effort to broker an end to the Libyan war and the Russian supply route for US forces fighting in Afghanistan.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 15, 2011
As US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Friday, July 15, informed the Libya Contact Group in Istanbul that the US recognized the rebel National Transitional Council (TNC) "until a fully representational interim government can be established," Muammar Qaddafi declared "We aim for victory – not compromise!" and launched his troops on a new operation against rebels in the west. His object was to improve his bargaining position in peace negotiations debkafile reports are underway with the US through Moscow.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 15, 2011
If Aleppo finally throws its weight against the anti-government opposition, Bashar Assad's days will be numbered – especially after his elite troops failed to break the back of the uprising and he blew his only shot at national dialogue by disinviting influential opposition leaders.
DEBKAfile Special Report July 12, 2011
Monday, July 11, after a pro-Assad mob invaded the US embassy in Damascus, a personal attack on Syrian President Bashar Assad was heard in Washington for the first time. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Assad "is not indispensible and we have absolutely nothing invested in him remaining in power," after US embassy staff were forced to shelter in a fortified wing of the mission as Assad's militiamen rampaged through the building and raised the Syrian flag.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis May 2, 2011
Far from dispensing with electronic devices and Internet connections as widely reported, photos of Osama bin Laden's fortress-villa in Abbottabad, Pakistan, prove it was equipped with both and therefore vulnerable to penetration and surveillance. Puzzling questions include: Why did the US and Pakistan who must have known where he was not lay hands on him sooner? Why was May 1, 2011 chosen for the operation? And why did US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tie it in with the Arab uprising?
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 25, 2011
Profound disagreements among three allies and within their administrations are hampering progress in the Libyan operation. NATO and Arab props crumple.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 18, 2011
Washington has excellent relations with the Egyptian military rulers but their control of the country is extremely limited. The soldiers would rather desert than obey orders. The police are off the streets and the civilian government goes its own way.
DEBKAfile Special Report March 3, 2011
Ahead of the first Day of Anger planned in Saudi Arabia for March 11, a senior Iranian figure close to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad warned Riyadh Wednesday, March 2, against launching preventive security measures against, or cracking down on, the kingdom's two million Shiites who live and work in the oil regions of the east. In Washington, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton accused Iran of using its Lebanese surrogate Hizballah to shape events in the Arab world.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 28, 2011
The US is weighing military intervention to break the standoff between Muammar Qaddafi's army and rebel forces over the towns commanding the roads to the capital Tripoli where Qaddafi is barricaded. Pentagon spokesman Col. David Lapan stated Monday, Feb. 28 that the US "is repositioning its naval and air forces around Libya." His reference to "various contingency plans" related to the USS Enterprise and USS Kearsarge with 1,800 marines aboard soon to be redeployed off Libya.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis December 11, 2010
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had the thankless task of writing finis on the Obama administration's two-year effort to persuade Israelis and Palestinians to talk peace. It was time "to grapple with the core issues of this conflict" - borders, refugees, settlements, water and Jerusalem – she said, without mentioning timetables. debkafile reports the administration has now turned to a new plan for employing Turkey - first to broker a deal with Iran, then an Israeli-Syrian accord.