Book cover courtesy of OR Books.

The Middle East has been in one kind of “crisis” or another since the end of World War I, nearly a century ago. However, the US-led invasion of Iraq, coupled with a civil war in neighboring Syria, has led to an unprecedented devolution into chaos, which the Islamic State is now trying to capitalize on.

Last week, WhoWhatWhy published an excerpt from Syria Burning to give our readers a glimpse into this chaotic part of the world and the “confused” role the US currently plays in it. Today, we sit down with the book’s author to delve deeper.

Foreign Correspondent Charles Glass provides WhoWhatWhy with a first-hand report on events in Syria and Iraq and puts them into context. The countries are more than pieces on a geopolitical chessboard. A fourth of Syria’s population are now refugees with very little hope of being able to return to their homes.

The author tells WhoWhatWhy’s Jeff Schechtman that he sees this conflict as a proxy war that neither side can win unless the US, Russia and Iran work together to help end the war. Will that ever happen?

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Author

  • Jeff Schechtman’s career spans movies, radio stations and podcasts. After spending twenty-five years in the motion picture industry as a producer and executive, he immersed himself in journalism, radio, and more recently the world of podcasts. To date he has conducted over ten-thousand interviews with authors, journalists, and thought leaders. Since March of 2015, he has conducted over 315 podcasts for WhoWhatWhy.org

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Steve Sperdacion

central banks https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_Bank_of_Syria

Since the outbreak of the Syrian civil war, it has been reported that Syria’s gold reserves have been cut in half from the pre-civil war amount of around $17 billion, due to the Syrian government resorting to selling off its reserves as a way of coping with international sanctions.[3] The Governor of the Central Bank of Syria Adib Mayalah has sought to deny these reports.[4] This is similar to how the Syrian government is having to use up its foreign reserves to meet the demands of a budget deficit which has greatly increased to around $6.7 Billion USD.[5]