10 years ago the political demonstrations known as the Arab Spring spread to Syria. What began as a movement for greater democracy quickly devolved into a brutal sectarian civil war. The fighting attracted intervention from regional and global powers including the US, Russia, Iran, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia. A flood of foreign weapons, airstrikes, and brutal economic sanctions have led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands. With no apparent military solution, a political compromise has proved elusive as well. We'll be discussing the Syrian conflict, now 10 years old, with one of the foremost experts on Syria in the world, Joshua Landis.
Joshua Landis, Associate Professor, International Area Studies; Director, Center of Middle East Studies, University of Oklahoma, USA at the World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa 2015 in Jordan. Copyright by World Economic Forum / Benedikt Von Loebell
Joshua Landis is the Sandra Mackey Chair in Middle East Studies and Director of the Farzaneh Family Center for Iranian and Persian Gulf Studies and the Center for Middle East Studies in the University of Oklahoma’s College of International Studies.
He writes “Syria Comment,” a daily newsletter on Syrian politics that attracts over 100,000 readers a month. Dr. Landis travels frequently to Washington DC to consult with government agencies and speak at think tanks. Most recently he has spoken at the Woodrow Wilson Institute, Brookings Institute, USIP, Middle East Institute, and Council on Foreign Relations.
Our conversation will be moderated by our Board Member Jeff Klein. Jeff has visited Syria three times, most recently in April 2018, and has written and spoken widely on the topic. His analysis is based on direct observations and conversations with many Syrians in the country and outside.