April 6, 2020 | Press Release

FDD Announces Research Series on COVID-19

April 6, 2020 | Press Release

FDD Announces Research Series on COVID-19


(Washington DC, April 6, 2020) – The Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) announced a new series of research products focused on COVID-19. The research is designed to help policy makers gain a better understanding of the impact of the novel coronavirus on national security.

In FDD’s first COVID analysis, Research Manager John Hardie and Research Associate Philip Kowalski examine Turkey’s handling of the coronavirus. Turkey now faces “the second-largest number of confirmed cases in the Middle East, only behind Iran.” Hardie and Kowalski consider Turkey’s “already precarious political, security, and economic situation” as they assess how emergency measures can impact the increasingly authoritarian rule of president Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The authors also address the impact of COVID-19 on Turkey’s dealings with China, Europe, and Syria.

The second COVID-19 policy brief, authored by FDD senior fellow Bill Roggio, addresses the impact of the virus on Afghanistan. The reported cases in Afghanistan are low for now, as public health protocols lag behind much of the rest of the region. The vast majority of the cases have been reported out of Herat, which borders Iran, which is widely acknowledged as the country struggling the most to contain the pandemic. But as Roggio notes, the Taliban will attempt to leverage the pandemic to present itself as the more organized and effective political actor in Afghanistan’s contested political scene.

FDD’s team of experts will publish regular policy briefs focusing on countries or territories in the Middle East, North Africa, Central Asia and East Asia.  FDD will include in every published analysis the latest reported numbers associated with COVID-19 across all of the jurisdictions we track. This will include confirmed cases, deaths, and recoveries. It will also include brief blurbs, state by state, on the latest developments in the battle against COVID-19.

FDD’s Senior Vice President for Research Jonathan Schanzer said, “This public health crisis is unprecedented, and the impact on national security cannot be overstated. FDD experts are working day-in and day-out to understand how all of this might alter our traditional views of various countries, conflicts, and non-state actors. Our goal is to provide policymakers with tools to navigate this complicated landscape.”

The Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) is a Washington, DC-based non-partisan policy institute focusing on foreign policy and national security. Visit our website at www.fdd.org and connect with us on TwitterFacebook, and YouTube.

To receive FDD’s research products on COVID-19, go to the subscribe page and check COVID-19 in the menu of topics.

To reach out to FDD’s press team, please email [email protected] and a member of the team would be glad to help you connect with our experts on coronavirus-related matters or the range of national security issues we cover.


FDD is a Washington, DC-based nonpartisan research institute focusing on national security and foreign policy.