Writer Articles
Haid Haid, Syndication Bureau

Haid Haid, Syndication Bureau

The writer is a Syrian columnist and a consulting associate fellow of Chatham House’s Middle East and North Africa program. Syndication Bureau.

In Syria, the politics of climate and conflict coalesce

​As the COP28 climate conference wrapped up in the United Arab Emirates last week, international observers were focused on the outcome of the talks, with good reason. The fate of humanity hangs in the balance. But just off stage, regional analysts were absorbed in a related issue that will hinder efforts to implement any plan to save the planet. Call it the geopolitics of climate action, and Syria was exhibit A.

Moscow’s strategic indifference in Syria

Repercussions from Hamas’ October 7 attack continue to reverberate beyond Israel’s borders. In Syria, skirmishes between Iranian-backed militias, Israeli forces, and American troops are complicating efforts to contain the fighting.

China’s cautious return to Syria’s oil market

​On June 20, China's state-owned energy and chemical giant, Sinopec, named a new manager for its subsidiary in Syria. The move, coming nearly a decade after the company suspended its activities in the war-ravaged nation, has ignited speculation that Beijing is finally ready to re-engage in Syria’s oil sector.

In Syria’s south, drug-related assassinations add to regional instability

On July 18, an assassination in Syria’s southwest Daraa province claimed the life of a Syrian regime forces member. Unlike the politically motivated incidents that plague the region, this attack stands out because the victim was primarily known for his involvement in drug trafficking and distribution.

Daesh shows signs of division over propaganda strategy

​Daesh has never been shy on bravado. Claiming attacks and an ability to storm capitals has been used to strike fear in enemies since it rose to prominence.

Syrian Kurds force West’s hand on detained Daesh fighters

The Kurdish-led administration in the autonomous region of northeast Syria appears to have had enough. The sprawling region, roughly the size of Slovakia, is home to 10,000 detained Daesh fighters, making it the largest concentration of jailed terrorists in the world, according to the US State Department.

Cashing in on Syria’s crony capitalism

​A recent move by the Syrian regime to seize the assets of 35 accused smugglers has raised questions about President Bashar Al-Assad’s intentions and regional strategy. Beyond the unusually high number of people targeted simultaneously, the profiles and affiliations of those under scrutiny are turning heads in Damascus and beyond.

Airstrikes on Syrian Drug Trade Send Clear Message

​Two airstrikes this month targeting drug trafficking operations inside the border region between Syria and Jordan sent a clear message that the region’s war on drugs was entering a new phase.

US Middle East policy emboldens Iran-Backed militias in Syria

​A recent uptick in attacks against US troops in Syria has raised questions over the effectiveness of the Biden administration’s Iran policy as well as concerns that a new conflict could erupt in the region.

US-Russia tensions flare high over Syria

A recent spike in aggressive behavior by the Russian military over Syria, coupled with the downing of an American drone by a Russian fighter jet in the Black Sea, is prompting fears that Moscow and Washington are on a collision course to confrontation.