Interview

Quoted on Turkey’s reaction to the threat of US sanctions with military deployment near Syria

  • “Since Trump and his national security advisers are not talking in one voice on the S-400, Erdogan is trying to weigh in on this debate by highlighting the potential risks to US forces, however, this move might further antagonize the US against Ankara,”.
  • “While Erdogan is trying to have leverage over the upcoming talks between the Turkish and American militaries regarding northern Syria, the unintended risk is provoking a confrontation with Kurdish forces, which might increase the cost of Turkish intervention in Syria at a critical time in Erdogan’s political future”.

Click here to read the full article.

Interview

Quoted in the AP on #Iraq Premier’s decision to reign in Hashd al-Shaabi

  • The Iranian regime’s objective remains to incorporate the (PMF) as an independent formation within the military structure, a la IRGC, to become an Iraqi Revolutionary Guard.
  • Some in Washington and the Arab world are welcoming this Iraqi decree with jubilation but the fact is it will not be implemented without Iranian consent. It actually preserves and legitimizes Iranian influence on the long-term. Click here to read the full article.
Interview

Quoted in “Arab News” on the continuing escalation in Idlib despite cease-fire claims

  • Russia and Turkey have “irreconcilable interests in Idlib, however, they chose neither to fight if off nor to strike a deal since both scenarios have a detrimental impact on their bilateral relations”.
  • The only way out of the Idlib quagmire is either the shortcut of an unwarranted military solution or the long-term arduous path of conflict resolution.
  • Idlib and the S-400 delivery have become increasingly intertwined and caught up in the US-Russian tensions and Turkey’s attempt to play both sides.
  • “Erdogan is approaching a critical moment next month where he might have to choose between coming under significant US pressure if he officially receives the S-400s and dealing with a Russian offensive in Idlib if the S-400 deal does not go through.

Click here to read the full article.

Interview

Quoted in the Arab Weekly on how Washington’s support to SDF in Syria is fueling US-Turkish tensions

  • It is unlikely that the Trump administration will concede a Turkish role in northern Syria similar to the US-Turkish agreement in Manbij.
  • Implementing a buffer zone between Kurdish fighters and Turkish forces along the Syrian-Turkish border largely depends on whether American and European officials agree on a deal to deploy joint forces to secure this buffer zone.

Click here to read the full article.

Interview

Quoted in AP on Pompeo’s visit to Beirut

“Washington should be careful not to push Lebanon to the brink, as Hezbollah would retaliate if its survival is at stake,” said Joe Macaron, a resident fellow at the Arab Center in Washington. “In the current status quo, the most effective way to restrain Hezbollah remains within the intricate parameters of the Lebanese political system,” he said. You can read the full article here.

Interview

Quoted by MEE on Iran’s foreign minister short-lived resignation

Joe Macaron, a fellow at the Arab Center Washington DC, said announcing a resignation on Instagram is “unconventional and unprecedented” for an Iranian official. “It seems… Zarif submitted his resignation letter and went on social media before either Rouhani and Khamenei [can] react to this resignation, which might mean that Zarif is locked in a fight with hardliners on what directions should the Iranian foreign policy take amidst growing US pressure on its economy,” Macaron told MEE via email. “We are yet to know the full story behind this resignation, but it seems to reflect heated debates in Tehran around the foreign policy challenges facing the Iranian regime.” Click here to read the full article.

Interview

Sanctions unlikely to affect Hezbollah

Quoted in the Daily Star on the impact of US sanctioning Iran on Hezbollah: “The U.S. is targeting the official economy in Iran, while Hezbollah benefits from transactions outside the official economies of both Lebanon and Iran” “The Trump administration is going after Hezbollah’s source of support, and if the Shiite group felt the Iranian regime’s survival is in question, it might act to increase the cost of U.S. diplomatic pressure on Iran”.

Interview

Quoted in al-Jazeera English: Will the US confront Iran’s forces in Syria?

“What we are currently seeing is the most serious attempt by hawkish and conservative advisers to get the US directly involved in the Syrian war, an attempt that echoes Israeli concerns about US withdrawal plans from Syria,” said Joe Macaron of the Arab Center Washington, DC, further explaining that the aggressive position is not universally accepted.”Trump himself and the Pentagon are resisting this temptation, Israel will most probably continue in the foreseeable future to fight its own battles against Iran.” Click here to read the full article.