Julien Barnes-Dacey

Lebanon: Locked into escalation?

The collapse of Lebanon’s government has thrust the country into a deepening political crisis. The war in Syria and recent actions by Hezbollah also suggest that internal conflict may return to Lebanon.  

Does Jordan’s election change anything?

Jordan's elections were widely considered a success, but the country continues to face two critical challenges: dealing with overspill from the Syrian conflict, and a badly stumbling economy.  

Don’t give up on politics in Syria

As civil war engulfs Syria talk of politics and diplomacy has fallen silent. But the West should be redoubling its political and diplomatic efforts, even as it offers indirect support for the arming of the rebels in Syria.  

On Assad’s Doorstep

The eyes of the world are on Syria's bloody villages. But now the revolution is finally coming to the once quiet, now tense streets of inner Damascus.  

Damascus on the brink

Julien Barnes-Dacey has just returned from a visit to Syria, and returned deeply pessimistic about the situation on the ground, with hopes for a political solution appearing all but dead.  

Europe struggling to play meaningful role in Syria crisis

The case of Syria shows that Europe maintains a limited ability to shape its Southern neighbourhood. For the time being it remains a fairly insignificant political actor in the unfolding Syrian crisis.  

Syria’s rebels will have to deal with Assad

No one wants to deal with dictators. But one year after the Syrian uprising began, the harsh truth is that Bashar al-Assad maintains the upper hand and the opposition – with its international backers – may have little choice but to cut a deal with him if they want to ease the Syrian people’s suffering.  

Jordan – no longer boring?

For so long a reliably boring country in the middle of a tumultuous region, there are signs that Jordan may soon become lively as demands for political reform and the wider impact of the Arab Awakening begin to reach Amman.