Who Wins and Loses in the Middle East?

Jan 10, 2020

Following Iran’s missile attacks on a two US airbase, one outside Baghdad and the second near Erbil in Iraqi Kurdistan, US President Donald Trump almost triumphantly announced that Iran is now standing down in their the two countries’ intensified conflict following the killing of Quds Force...

The US Will Never Leave the Middle East
Jan 10, 2020

The US Will Never Leave the Middle East

The Global War of Error
Jan 09, 2020

The Global War of Error

Will Iran and the US Go to War?
Jan 08, 2020

Will Iran and the US Go to War?

Don’t Just Focus on Trump’s Crimes at Home

Don’t Just Focus on Trump’s Crimes at Home

Nov 22, 2019

It’s a cliché in Westerns. The bad guys ride into town only to be met by a sheriff who stands tall. “I am the law,” the sheriff says, “and you boys better move on.”  This line appears in King Vidor’s 1930 film, "Billy the Kid." But the speaker, sheriff William...

Turkey’s Plan in Syria: Squash Dreams of Kurdish Autonomy

Turkey's Plan in Syria: Squash Dreams of Kurdish Autonomy

Nov 12, 2019

As the Arab Spring morphed into a bloody civil war in Syria in 2011, there was an opportunity for the country’s Kurdish movement to establish, develop and consolidate an autonomous administration. Kurds in Syria have been under long-time oppression by the government of both Hafez al-Assad and...

The Islamic State and Donald Trump’s Delusion

The Islamic State and Donald Trump’s Delusion

Nov 01, 2019

Even before the recent raid that resulted in the death of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the erstwhile head of the Islamic State (IS or ISIS), US President Donald Trump had spoken of how he had single-handedly defeated the caliphate. “Now, when I came, the caliphate was all over the place,” the...

Can Iraq’s New Foreign Policy Approach Succeed?

Can Iraq’s New Foreign Policy Approach Succeed?

Oct 30, 2019

Since October 2018, when the new Iraqi government took office, President Barham Saleh and Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi highlighted that the war-torn country was never again to be involved in regional disputes and that it was time for a new political order. President Saleh defines Iraq's future...

Trump Screenwrites History With Death of IS Chief

Trump Screenwrites History With Death of IS Chief

Oct 29, 2019

US President Donald Trump rose to hyperbolic heights of hyperreal narration last weekend as he described the Pentagon’s successful takedown of the Islamic State (IS) group’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, in Syria. The world will undoubtedly be a better place without Al-Baghdadi, but much of...

Turkey’s Syria Gamble May Be a Losing Game

Turkey’s Syria Gamble May Be a Losing Game

Oct 29, 2019

On October 22, the presidents of Russia and Turkey, Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, held a seven-hour summit in the resort town of Sochi to discuss Turkey’s incursion into northeastern Syria. Many experts and journalists are portraying the agreed deal as a success for Ankara and Moscow...

Russia Turns Trump’s Middle East Blunder to Its Advantage

Russia Turns Trump’s Middle East Blunder to Its Advantage

Oct 23, 2019

The Americans call the five-day halt to Turkey’s military incursion into northern Syria a ceasefire, while the Turks prefer to call it a pause. The Kurds call the incursion something else. For them, and for American soldiers who fought with them in the war against the Islamic State (IS), as well...

Qatar’s Links to Terrorism: The War of Narratives

Qatar’s Links to Terrorism: The War of Narratives

Oct 21, 2019

As Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates continue their blockade of Qatar, the pair often justify their campaign by accusing Doha of sponsoring terrorism. Most analysts have cast this claim as hypocritical, given Saudi Arabia and the UAE’s history of links to extremist groups from...

It’s Time to Bury the Myth of Trump the Dealmaker

It's Time to Bury the Myth of Trump the Dealmaker

Oct 18, 2019

Donald Trump loves to talk about ending the endless US wars that he inherited as president. He tweets about it. He endlessly criticizes his predecessors for their martial mistakes. But like the old saw about the weather, Trump talks a whole lot about endless wars but doesn’t do...

Without Free and Fair Elections, Afghanistan’s Economy Will Not Recover

Without Free and Fair Elections, Afghanistan’s Economy Will Not Recover

Sep 25, 2019

Afghanistan’s presidential election, scheduled for September 28, will hopefully bring the 9.6 million registered voters to the polling stations, 35% of them women. The election is essentially a rematch between the current president, Ashraf Ghani, and his chief executive, Abdullah Abdullah, plus...

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