Last December, U.S. President Donald Trump adopted extraordinarily tough and wide-ranging new sanctions against the Syrian government and its supporters. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and other senior officials have been subject to U.S. sanctions since 2011, but the new measures, which took effect in mid-June, are sweeping: they apply to anyone, Syrian or non-Syrian, who aids or does business with the Assad regime or with any entities it controls.
The policy has earned praise in some quarters—compared to many Trump-era Middle East actions, it is at least coherent. But it fails to advance any core American interests. Moreover,
Source URL: https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/syria/2020-08-17/pointless-cruelty-trumps-new-syria-sanctions