Experts & Staff

Thanassis Cambanis – Fellow

Thanassis Cambanis
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Thanassis Cambanis is a journalist who has covered the Middle East for nearly a decade. His most recent book, published in 2015, Once Upon A Revolution: An Egyptian Story (Simon and Schuster), is about the efforts of Egyptian revolutionaries to create a new political order after the fall of Mubarak. His first book, A Privilege to Die: Inside Hezbollah’s Legions and Their Endless War Against Israel, was published in 2010. He writes “The Internationalist” column for The Boston Globe Ideas section, and is a correspondent for The Atlantic. Thanassis regularly contributes to The New York Times, The Boston Globe (where he served as a foreign correspondent in Iraq and the Middle East), and other publications.

He is an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs in New York City. In 2009 Cambanis served as a Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University. Thanassis got his master’s in public affairs at Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School. He studied history and creative writing for his bachelor’s at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He lives in Beirut with his family. 

See more of his writing at

Latest Work by Thanassis Cambanis
Confronting the “Moscow Track” for Syria
September 24, 2015
A Plan for Syria
July 28, 2015
Managing the War in Yemen: Diplomatic Opportunities in the Mayhem
June 16, 2015
Deaths of Egyptian Soccer Fans Raises Questions
February 11, 2015
The Egyptian Revolution, Four Years Later
January 16, 2015
Regional Consequences of Iran’s Nuclear Deal
December 4, 2013
An Arab Winter Emerges
October 28, 2013
Thanassis Cambanis Discusses Violence in Beirut
June 26, 2013
Syria and Hezbollah: Century Fellow Thanassis Cambanis on BBC Newshour
May 20, 2013
Red Lines and Taboos
April 25, 2013
Why Marriage Matters in the Middle East
March 11, 2013
Rosa Brooks on Obama’s Squishy Kill Doctrine
February 6, 2013
Arrested Development
January 26, 2013
Arrested Development—Thanassis Cambanis on the Future Military and His NYT Book Review
January 24, 2013
TCF Fellows Thanassis Cambanis and Michael Cohen Debate The Insurgents and Post-invasion Iraq
January 24, 2013
Bringing Israel and Palestine to the Table in the Second Term
November 7, 2012
FEATURING Thanassis Cambanis
The Arab Spring Was a Revolution of the Hungry
August 23, 2015
Are We Witnessing the Birth of a New Mideast Order?
July 23, 2015
A Syrian Parody Features the Civil War, and Is Stalked by It
July 16, 2015
Permanent refugees reshape the Middle East
July 13, 2015
Syria’s Humanitarians Are Going Broke
July 6, 2015
Success For U.S.-Backed Fighters In Syria Leads To Political Complications
July 6, 2015
How a handshake in Helsinki helped end the Cold War
June 8, 2015
Thanassis Cambanis on Egypt’s Unfinished Revolution
May 29, 2015
Egypt’s Sisi Is Getting Pretty Good…at Being a Dictator
May 22, 2015
Lebanon’s ‘Democracy of the Gun’
May 14, 2015
Can Posters and Statues Incite Violence?
April 30, 2015
Foreign Affairs Reviews Once Upon A Revolution: An Egyptian Story
April 21, 2015
Iran is Winning the War for Dominance of the Middle East
April 14, 2015
When Diplomacy Is Most Needed, America Flees
April 2, 2015
Reading Room: Thanassis Cambanis *00
March 29, 2015
Max Strasser on Once Upon a Revolution: An Egyptian Story: When the Sun Falls over Tahrir
March 28, 2015
Why ISIS’s Destruction of Antiquities Hurts So Much
March 10, 2015
“Once Upon a Revolution: What’s Left of Egypt’s Uprising?” with Thanassis Cambanis
March 6, 2015
Podcast: “Once Upon a Revolution: What’s Left of Egypt’s Uprising?” with Thanassis Cambanis
March 6, 2015
Ten What’s With…Thanassis Cambanis
February 27, 2015
How ISIS Runs a City
February 26, 2015
A Daring Plan to Rebuild Syria — No Matter Who Wins the War
February 21, 2015
BOSTON GLOBE: ‘Once Upon a Revolution’ by Thanassis Cambanis
February 13, 2015
NEW YORK TIMES: ‘Once Upon a Revolution,’ by Thanassis Cambanis
February 13, 2015
The Very Model of a Modern Arab Democracy
February 5, 2015
Real-Life Stories From The 2011 Revolution That Changed Egypt Forever
February 3, 2015
Once Upon a Revolution: An Egyptian Story
January 28, 2015
Bloom Of Arab Spring Fades In Egypt
January 28, 2015
The Final Betrayal of Egypt’s Revolution
January 23, 2015
Library Journal Review Out
January 23, 2015
Two Unlikely Revolutionaries in Tahrir Square
January 21, 2015
Foreign Policy Wins Obama Could Still Pull Off
January 20, 2015
Is Egypt on the Verge of Another Uprising?
January 20, 2015
Israeli Infiltration Suggests Hizballah Is Having a Mid-Life Crisis
January 7, 2015
In a Beirut Mansion, A City’s Culture is Reborn
December 23, 2014
Down but Not Out: Youth and Revolution in Egypt and Beyond
December 18, 2014
In Congo, Peacekeepers at War
December 1, 2014
Documenting the heart of darkness
October 14, 2014
Inside the World of Jihadi Hunters
October 7, 2014
The new amateur terrorist hunters
October 6, 2014
The jihadi hunters
October 3, 2014
Entering the Syrian Minefield
September 19, 2014
Fighting ISIS: The View From The Middle East
September 11, 2014
Hezbollah Is Trying To Fool People Into Believing It’s The Moderate Alternative To ISIS In The Middl
August 26, 2014
How ISIS Is Using Taxes To Build A Terrorist State
August 19, 2014
Washington can’t solve the identity crisis in Middle East nations
August 18, 2014
Strange bedfellows: Putin, the Chomskyite left and the ghosts of the Cold War
July 28, 2014
The world’s next nations: a brief guide
July 28, 2014
The Surprising Appeal of ISIS
July 1, 2014
Sunni Fighters Gain as They Battle 2 Governments, and Other Rebels
June 13, 2014
How ISIS is Exploiting the Economics of Syria’s Civil War
June 13, 2014
Could Aid to Syrians be Prolonging the War?
June 2, 2014
No Military Solution
May 22, 2014
Journalist Thanassis Cambanis explains what gets lost when the US promotes democracy abroad.
May 12, 2014
How can America really promote democracy abroad?
April 28, 2014
Wrong Man, Wrong Battle
April 4, 2014
Why Putin’s Crimean move crosses the line
March 31, 2014
Medical Care Is Now a Tool of War
February 24, 2014
A revolutionary playwright for the Middle East
January 14, 2014
Is Dubai the future of cities?
December 1, 2013
Is Lebanon Being Sucked into Syria’s Civil War?
November 22, 2013
A New Brain Trust for the Middle East
September 29, 2013
The secret history of democratic thought in the Middle East
August 18, 2013
Why the Hezbollah Blacklisting Is Pointless
July 22, 2013
What will give Egypt’s ruler ‘legitimacy’?
July 22, 2013
U.S. calls for Morsi’s release by Egypt military
July 15, 2013
The Most Worrying Thing About Egypt’s Coup: the Police
July 8, 2013
Violence Rocking Lebanon
June 26, 2013
Meet the international revolutionary geek squad
June 24, 2013
Thanassis Cambanis on For Your Ears Only
June 18, 2013
Hezbollah Intervention in Syria Risks Regional War
May 28, 2013
How Do You Say ‘Quagmire’ in Farsi?
May 14, 2013
How cities reshape themselves when trust vanishes
April 22, 2013
Should America let Syria fight on?
April 9, 2013
Syria’s Refugees Overwhelming Relief Efforts and Host Countries, U.N. Official Says
April 4, 2013
The Middle East’s fight for civil marriage
March 11, 2013
The Triple Threat to Egyptian Press Freedom
February 20, 2013
TCF fellow Thanassis Cambanis in The Boston Globe: What really drives civil wars?
January 15, 2013

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