Founded by the late Professor Barry Rubin, the Rubin Center is one of the most versatile and active Mid-East research centers in the world. The center is committed to making the most up-to-date; accurate; and in many cases, otherwise inaccessible information available to policymakers and to the broader public. The Rubin Center’s groundbreaking frontline reporting and research—frequently picked up by the major media outlets—sets us apart from other research centers.
- Frontline reporting:Rubin Center researchers regularly visit the region, including Iraq and war-torn Syria, witnessing developments first-hand. The center has exposed many important news stories. In addition to being first to reveal ISIS’s use of chemical weapons, Rubin Center Director Dr. Jonathan Spyer visited Baghdad this year and obtained unprecedented access to the Shi’a militias, interviewing senior officials from those organizations there. Spyer and Rubin Fellow Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi published the first piece anywhere to call out the role being played by the militias, which later became mainstream knowledge. Spyer later published a detailed report on the subject. Spyer has also reported from Syria and Turkey, conducting groundbreaking research on the nature and limitations of U.S.-Kurdish cooperation in Syria.
- Primary research: The Rubin Center was ahead of the game on the importance of ISIS as a proto-state. In the first attempt to understand ISIS ideology through use of primary resources in Arabic, Rubin Fellow Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi has been translating and analyzing key ISIS documents–including recruitment, training, textbooks, administrative, and other primary sources. Jawad obtained an ISIS “masterplan” for the governance of the Islamic State, which was a front page story in the Guardian—which received the information directly from Jawad—and in other major media outlets around the world. Senior U.S. officials referred to the document as significant. In another major, but non-public, media monitoring project, Rubin Research Associate Alex Grinberg has been conducting pioneering research on Iran using Farsi-language resources.
- Media and consultancy: The Rubin Center consults for government–including the United States, UK, China, Israel, India, Canada, and the Czech Republic–news media, and academic research. Rubin researchers have been sought out by the White House, the British parliament, and other Western governments, as well as media bodies, and human rights NGOs. Rubin Research Fellow Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi, for example, has testified before the British House of Commons on the threat represented by the Islamic State. The Rubin Center also provides research work for important pro-Western organizations as well as for major media outlets. Its work has been published/cited in the New York Times, Huffington Post, FOX News, and more. Dr. Jonathan Spyer is also a regular contributor to The Australian and to Jane’s Intelligence Review.
- Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA): Covering the latest developments in the region from a wide variety of viewpoints, including U.S. policy, radical movements, and minorities, the Rubin Center’s quarterly journal MERIA has a circulation of over 25,000. Get your free subscription today!
- Turkish Studies: In a crucial geographical and political location, Turkey’s importance is growing rapidly throughout Europe, the Middle East, and the Caucasus. With an upsurge in interest in its history, politics, and foreign policy, Turkish Studies quarterly–listed in the Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI)–offers scholarly discussion on these topics and more.
- Books: The Rubin Center has produced numerous books on subjects of importance, including Nazis, Islamists and the Making of the Modern Middle East—about the political alliance forged among Third Reich leaders, Arab nationalists, and Muslim religious authorities during the 1930s and 1940s—and The Transforming Fire: The Rise of the Israel-Islamist Conflict—which deals with the emergence of Islamist movements as Israel’s main adversaries and Israel’s response to this. In 2015, The Military History of the Modern Middle East was published, covering the military history of the past hundred years, including such topics as both world wars, the Turkish-Greek conflicts, Arab nationalism, the Arab-Israeli conflicts, and the post-2003 fighting in Iraq. As part of the center’s Free Books project, we also offer 13 of Barry Rubin’s books online, including on the Israel-Palestinian conflict, Syria, U.S. policy, Jewish assimilation, and more.