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Russia, Israel and the Trump-Putin Summit

The meeting in Helsinki between US President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin has been surrounded by controversy...  However, the two leaders were also apparently able to discuss some mutual interests, including a common concern for the security of Israel

Developments in southern Syria

Today's Update looks at the latest developments in southern Syria, as the Assad regime, with the vital assistance of Russia and Iran, moves to retake the area around Daraa and Quneitra, near Israel's border. The ongoing Iranian presence in Syria is a major security challenge for Israel, and there is ongoing tension between the two countries.

Dr Jonathan Spyer on Syria

Dr Jonathan Spyer of the Middle East Centre for Reporting and Analysis appeared on ABC News24 with Bev O'Connor on June 19 to discuss the complex situation in Syria as the civil war draws to an end.

Video: Dr Jonathan Spyer on the nexus between Syria, Iran, Russia...

Dr Jonathan Spyer of the Jerusalem Institute for Strategic Studies discusses how the interests of Russia, Iran and Israel are influencing the situation in Syria as the civil war draws to an end.

Video: Efraim Inbar on Turkey, Israel and Syria

Professor Efraim Inbar of the Jerusalem Institute for Strategic Studies discusses Turkey and Israel's strategic positions, plus recent developments in Syria. 

The Dangerous US-Russia game in Syria

The US-Russian relationship in Syria has been a frosty one with its share of risks. Russia's direct intervention in the Syrian civil war began with strikes on anti-Assad militias covertly supported by the West and on the CIA-provided weapons depots that supplied them. Those strikes exposed to the world what had previously been a black program. Russian fighters have routinely harassed US jets and unmanned aerial vehicles and invaded NATO airspace - a pattern that culminated in the downing of a Russian warplane over Turkish soil in mid-2015. Meanwhile, Syrian insurgents have been filmed destroying Russian armour and helicopters using sophisticated US weaponry.

Six years of hell

Having reached the six-year anniversary, the death toll is now counted by the hundreds of thousands with a refugee crisis tallied in the millions. The catastrophe in Syria remains a dark stain on the soul of humanity that challenges previously held norms and assumptions.

Syria’s future depends on Russia

The direction of events in Syria raises a number of questions about the current diplomacy of the Syrian war which have potential implications far beyond Syria itself. These relate primarily to the intentions of Russia in the Syrian conflict, and also to the stance that the new US Administration will take.

Regarding Russia, the question is what Putin is looking for in Syria - how do the Russians see the endgame?

After Aleppo – Five Predictions

Putin will use Aleppo's capture to damage US foreign policy. His intentions are already clear. After all, in English-news propaganda outlets such as RT, the Russians are proudly rejecting American demands that Sunni rebels be given safe passage out of Aleppo. It's Obama vs. Putin 101. Unwilling to pressure Russia, Obama is simply ignored by Putin. Through this public display of American impotence, Putin asserts his grand strategy in the Middle East. 

The imminent fall of Aleppo and the Trump Administration

With the Assad regime, and its Russian, Iranian and Hezbollah allies, making major in-roads into the rebel-head eastern district of Aleppo, it now looks like only a matter of time until the city falls to the regime. With US President-elect Trump having pledged to ignore the Syrian conflict and to seek a partnership with Russia, but also having pledged to fight back against the Iranian drive to dominate the region, and with the fall of Aleppo likely to provide a major boost to the Iranian axis - the events in Syria look likely to place the Trump Administration in a dilemma over Syria when they take over. This Update features analysis of that dilemma.