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The Syrian conflict’s fallout in Lebanon – and Hezbollah’s role in the quagmire

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The Syrian civil war affects Lebanon in a myriad of ways, and ever since the outbreak of the conflict in 2011, the security situation in parts of the country deteriorated decisively . The Lebanese state was challenged the most in two hotspots: Tripoli, the second largest city, where radical groups took over parts of town for a few months, and the northern Bekaa Valley on the border to Syria, where ISIS and similar groups held out for more than three years. In summer 2017, Hezbollah took a strong position against these Syrian militias in Lebanon and launched a large scale offensive to regain state monopoly in the border region. The article argues that this takeover and execution of state functions is seen very controversial in Lebanon and abroad, especially because Hezbollah is heavily dependent on its protector Iran.

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Khan Shaykhun is Thightening the Syrian Knot

In Blog by David FussiLeave a Comment

This article sheds light on events in the run-up Khan Shaykhun chemical attack on April 4, 2017 as well as its context and likely consequences for the war in Syria. Read the full article in German. In the weeks prior to the April 4 chemical attack on Khan Shaykhun, fierce battling between government and rebel forces had taken place along several fronts across Syria. Political landmarks such as the end of Turkey’s mission “Euphrates Shield” and its expected pivot towards expulsing Kurdish forces from the border region fell into the same period. No solid proof of the identity of the attack’s perpetrators has materialised thus far. International reactions were mixed, with Western governments largely putting the blame on the Syrian regime. A “retaliatory” US cruise missile strike on a Syrian air base took place on April 7. It is furthermore not entirely who has been controlling the area around Khan Shaykhun and might thus have been the target of the April 4 attack. The term “rebels” is indiscriminately used for a broad range of groups that differ in their origins, aims and motifs as well as in their supporters from abroad. At the same time, the near-total absence of observers that …