AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Gayle Tzemach Lemmon

Council on Foreign Relations Gayle Tzemach Lemmon is a regular contributor to Defense One. Lemmon is the author of Ashley's War: The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield and a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.
Results 1-10 of 77

‘I Want to Finish This’: US Special Ops Leaders Urge Washington to Stick by the Syrian Kurds

September 13, 2017 KOBANI, Syria – Talking with American special operators as we walk in the summer heat through the sprawling training facilities of the Syrian Arab Coalition, one sentiment is immediately obvious: relief. It is not that these elite American troops are relaxed about the mission; it is that they make clear...

The Next Battle: State Department, US Military Divided Over Kurdish Fighters In Syria (And Russia)

July 11, 2017 The end game has arrived. In Syria, the U.S.-backed campaign to retake Raqqa from the Islamic State is nearing its final chapter. And yet the rifts inside the United States government about what to do next, as ISIS falls, are as evident in President Donald Trump’s administration as they were...

Calm Your Russia War Drums Over This ‘Deconfliction Line’

June 25, 2017 Every time the U.S. and Russian militaries, or the forces they support, cross paths in Syria, talk immediately turns to fears of growing tensions or even direct confrontation between superpowers in a war few are following closely. It’s time for a reality check. Yes, tensions are high on the Syrian...

Mattis’s Afghanistan War Plan: Be Patient, Convince Everyone

June 15, 2017 So now it is the Trump administration’s turn at Afghanistan, and to try and wring a winning strategy from the current stalemate as the war nears its 16th year. And then sell that strategy inside and outside of Washington. It is a task that has tested — and largely eluded...

The Longest War Fades Even at NATO

May 26, 2017 This was the big stage and the NATO spotlight. At least it was supposed to be. For months, U.S. commanders said they needed thousands more NATO and American troops to help Afghans hold back the resurgent and unrelenting fighting of more than 20 terrorist groups across the country. They looked...

And So It Begins: Trump, Syria, and The Lessons of Iraq

May 22, 2017 Pentagon leaders may be talking “annihilation” when it comes to fighting ISIS under the Trump administration, but the reality is that America is focused on limited goals in Syria. The U.S. military is not aiming to take on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces or their proxies directly any time soon....

So Trump Is Arming Kurds...Then What?

May 11, 2017 An overnight decision months in the making is now official U.S. policy: America will directly arm the Syrian Kurds. NATO ally Turkey may see Syrian Kurdish fighters as terrorists, but the Pentagon sees them as the most effective local force in the fight against the Islamic State, or ISIS. Now...

How Will Trump Get Us From Tomahawks to the Peace Table?

April 12, 2017 When President Donald Trump last week became the first American president in the history of the six-year Syrian civil war to overtly attack Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces, he said, “Tonight, I call on all civilized nations to join us in seeking to end the slaughter and bloodshed in Syria.”...

‘It Was High Time’

April 7, 2017 “I call on all civilized nations to join us in seeking to end the slaughter and bloodshed in Syria...we hope that as long as America stands for justice, then peace and harmony will, in the end, prevail.” Those are the words of an American president who launched military strikes against...

The Marine Photo Scandal and the Cost of Indifference

March 27, 2017 Early this month, news broke on a military website called the War Horse that nude photos of women service members had been posted on a closed Facebook group called Marines United. In the days that followed, the Marine Corps announced that the Naval Criminal Investigation Service was launching an investigation....