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Bouthaina Shaaban


  • The Rise of ISIS and Other Extremist Groups: the role of the West and Regional PowersBouthaina Shaaban
    February 19, 2016

    This essay examines the role of Western and regional players (i.e. Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar) in inflaming the conflict and the growth of terrorism in Syria. It examines the attempts to break up Syria's civilian and military institutions, the delegitimization of the Syrian government, the attempts to procure a UN mandate for a military intervention in Syria, the imposition of suffocating economic sanctions on Syria, and most importantly the support that Western and regional powers gave to a plethora of armed groups, including al-Qaeda and ISIS, to fight the Syrian government. The latter point is scrutinized in order to highlight how the United States, and its allies in the region, cynically employed extremist groups in Syria to achieve geopolitical gains, thus leading to wider regional upheaval, the effects of which will most certainly go beyond the West Asia region.

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