Fears that al-Qaeda will take root in Syria once the regime has fallen are largely unfounded, writes Bartle B. Bull in the Weekly Standard.
Any cross-section of the Sunni community—from local families to rebel units, from the more relaxed Muslims who observe the Ramadan fast but break it all day long with cigarettes and coffee to members of the Muslim Brotherhood—shows, in words and behavior, that what they want from their revolution is a tolerant and forward-looking future. “We have lived with the Christians for over a thousand years,” the commander of a notably religious rebel unit tells me.“Of course we can live with them tomorrow.”
Increasingly under pressure and with limited resources, Iran is using terrorist attacks as a response to assaults on its nuclear program, writes Daniel Byman in Foreign Policy.
In 2012 alone, Iran has been linked to attempted attacks in Azerbaijan, Cyprus, Georgia, India, Kenya, and Thailand. In October 2011 the United States disrupted a plot to kill the Saudi ambassador in Washington by bombing the restaurant where he often ate lunch. Had the bomb gone off as planned, it would have killed many Americans dining there, too. The question, therefore, is not whether Iran will respond to further provocation -- including the ultimate provocation of air strikes on its nuclear facilities -- but how, and whether Iran's response should alter the U.S. and Israeli calculus.
Times of Israel: After war of words, Obama phones Netanyahu
Jerusalem Post: Jerusalem, Bulgaria divided over Burgas attack blame
New York Times: Anger Over a Film Fuels Anti-American Attacks in Libya and Egypt
Wall Street Journal: Syria's War Animates Zealots in Iraq