The problem of passport fraud tied to terrorism is not new, but so far, enforcement agencies’ efforts to counter it were primarily focused on targeting key links in the false document cottage industry chain, starting with organized printing of raw documents and the warehousing of counterfeit inventories.
“Hezbollah International Financing Prevention Act of 2015” comes just as Hezbollah is stepping up their Assad-supporting efforts in Syria, and just as sanction relief begins to take effect on Iran. However, the effectiveness of these sanctions - limited by design - seems to suggest that they are little more than political posturing.
In the border province of Deirezzor, Syria, ISIS has proven an extraordinarily resilient political actor, capable of building an unprecedentedly solid administrative apparatus based on political partnerships with state and non-state actors. A new study shows irrefutable evidence that ISIS has long cooperated with the Assad regime mostly through a company owned by a businessman who manages most of Bashar al-Assad’s oil dealings.