Elliott Abrams

Pressure Points

Abrams gives his take on U.S. foreign policy, with special focus on the Middle East and democracy and human rights issues.

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The Problem of the Lebanese Army

by Elliott Abrams

Should the United States be giving military assistance to the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF)? According to the U.S. ambassador to Lebanon (speaking last summer),  “In this year alone we provided over $221 million in equipment and training to the Lebanese security forces.” That number presumably includes aid to Lebanon’s police and Internal Security Forces, but given the small size of the country it is a hefty sum. Read more »

The Paris Peace Conference

by Elliott Abrams

 

Once upon a time, the term “Paris Peace Conference” was a serious one, and referred to the historic Versailles Conference that ended World War I. That conference began on January 18, 1919, and it is striking that the French would wish to make a mockery of their own history by convening a useless conference on almost exactly the same date—today, January 15. Read more »

What Happens When UN Security Council Resolutions are Ignored?

by Elliott Abrams

What happens when UN Security Council resolutions are ignored? That depends, really—on whether you are any of 192 other members of the United Nations, or are Israel.

Defenders of Israel often claim that it is treated differently by the United Nations from any other nation. That claim is accurate, and a brief look at Lebanon offers some proof. It continues to violate Security Council resolutions, year after year—but no one complains, and no one ever argues that Lebanon must be punished with boycotts or prosecutions for doing so. In fact they are often congratulated for their defiance. Read more »

In What Country is Shimon Peres Buried?

by Elliott Abrams

Last week President Obama spoke at Shimon Peres’ funeral and watched him buried–in some sort of No Man’s Land. Not in Israel, it seems.

The Obama White House actually issued a correction of its press release of Obama’s remarks, to strike the world “Israel.” You can see a screen shot of the corrected release here at the McClatchy news site. Read more »

The Syria Red Line, Three Years Later

by Elliott Abrams

It was three years ago, Labor Day weekend in 2013, that President Obama reversed himself and refused to enforce his “red line” against use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime.

What’s the outcome of that decision? In July, 2016, former Obama administration official Derek Chollet wrote an article in Politico with this subtitle: “The offhand remark spurred a massive success in Syria. Why does the foreign policy establishment consider it a failure?” Read more »