Syria is the latest country in the Middle East to see its population arise as demonstrators demand reforms. Following deadly anti-government protests, Syria has promised to implement a series of radical measures. But as unrest and protests continue to spread throughout the Middle East and North Africa, Shadi Hamid says it’s time for the U.S. to carefully consider its policies and actions in the region. And as the spirit of pan-Arab solidarity builds, and as authoritarian regimes push back, U.S. policy has to strike a balance between ideals and interests, he says.
[Trump has] given Iran the moral high ground and that is an exceptionally difficult thing to do given the history and reality of Iran's misdeeds at home and in the region. It's just malpractice on the part of an American president.
The way the Trump administration is moving forward [with its Iran policy] is just so hostile to all aspects of Iran that it’s unlikely to produce any traction with the Iranian people or to encourage divisions within the system.
The intent of [any U.S. action] to do with the IRGC is basically to cast a very broad shadow over sectors of the Iranian economy and exacerbate the compliance nightmare for foreign businesses that may be considering trade and investment with Iran.