The Lawfare Podcast: The Soleimani Strike Two Years Later

Jen Patja Howell, Benjamin Wittes, Suzanne Maloney, Daniel Byman, Scott R. Anderson
Wednesday, January 5, 2022, 12:00 PM

Published by The Lawfare Institute
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Two years ago this week, the head of the Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, Qassem Soleimani, was killed in an American strike. At the time, we convened a group of Brookings and Lawfare experts to talk about the potential benefits and risks of the strike, and two years later, we got the gang back together. Benjamin Wittes sat down with Suzanne Maloney, the head of Foreign Policy program at Brookings and an Iran specialist; Dan Byman, terrorism expert, Middle East scholar and Lawfare’s foreign policy editor; and Scott R. Anderson, Lawfare senior editor and Brookings fellow, to talk about what two years has wrought. They discussed whether the threat of terrorism and escalation in response to the strike was overstated, if U.S. interests were harmed in Iraq as a result of the strike, and what may have kept the Iranian regime from taking stronger action than it eventually took.

Jen Patja Howell is the editor and producer of The Lawfare Podcast and Rational Security. She currently serves as the Co-Executive Director of Virginia Civics, a nonprofit organization that empowers the next generation of leaders in Virginia by promoting constitutional literacy, critical thinking, and civic engagement. She is the former Deputy Director of the Robert H. Smith Center for the Constitution at James Madison's Montpelier and has been a freelance editor for over 20 years.
Benjamin Wittes is editor in chief of Lawfare and a Senior Fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution. He is the author of several books.
Suzanne Maloney studies Iran, the political economy of the Persian Gulf and Middle East energy policy. A former U.S. State Department policy advisor, she has also counseled private companies on Middle East issues. Maloney recently published a book titled "Iran's Long Reach: Iran as a Pivotal State in the Muslim World."
Daniel Byman is a professor at Georgetown University, Lawfare's Foreign Policy Essay editor, and a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic & International Studies.
Scott R. Anderson is a fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution and a Senior Fellow in the National Security Law Program at Columbia Law School. He previously served as an Attorney-Adviser in the Office of the Legal Adviser at the U.S. Department of State and as the legal advisor for the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq.

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