The Back Channel

Tillerson defends White House proposal to cut State budget

Thursday, Mar. 16, 2017 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson defended the White House’s proposal to slash the State Department budget by almost 30%, a move that could have serious repercussions on Middle East diplomacy.

Is spotlight on Trump’s Russia ties slowing US-Russia cooperation in Syria?

Tuesday, Mar. 7, 2017 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Intense scrutiny and investigations of possible ties between Trump associates and Russia may complicate prospects for US-Russian cooperation in the fight against IS and in Syria. It may happen anyway.

No breakthrough expected at new Syria talks

Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2017 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Expectations were modest for a new round of Syria talks set to get underway in Geneva Feb. 23, with the new US administration still formulating its policies.

Netanyahu arrives to Trump White House in turmoil

Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2017 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

The Israeli prime minister, who has long hoped to work with a Republican US president, arrives to a White House in crisis, but early enough, he hopes, to influence policies.

The colonels shaping Trump's Middle East policy

Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Who’s who in the Trump NSC: The retired military intelligence officers who helped David Petraeus with the surge in Iraq are now shaping policies for a president who says the United States should have never invaded Iraq.

White House warns Iran on missile test, but signals intent to enforce nuclear deal

Thursday, Feb. 2, 2017 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Trump national security aides warned Iran against missile tests and its support for Yemen’s Houthi rebels, but said they were drawing a line between Iran’s regional behavior and the Iran nuclear deal.

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