Navigating the Minefield of Arab Politics

Jan 14, 2021

In November 2020, the Saudi Association of Senior Scholars, a government-directed mouthpiece on religious affairs, issued a fatwa (religious edict) declaring the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization. In the fatwa, the scholars stated, among other reasons, that the Brotherhood seeks to...

Saudi-Qatar Reconciliation Provides New Opportunities for the Biden Administration
Jan 07, 2021

Saudi-Qatar Reconciliation Provides New Opportunities for the Biden Administration

US Sanctions Miss the Mark in Yemen
Dec 22, 2020

US Sanctions Miss the Mark in Yemen

Joe Biden Will Face a Much-Changed and Skeptical World
Dec 14, 2020

Joe Biden Will Face a Much-Changed and Skeptical World

Iran’s Revenge Against Israel Will Be a Long Game

Iran’s Revenge Against Israel Will Be a Long Game

Dec 04, 2020

Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, shot to death by a remote-controlled weapon on November 27 in Iran’s capital Tehran, was the fifth nuclear scientist Israel’s intelligence agency, the Mossad, has assassinated over the past 13 years. He joins a list of dozens killed by Israeli special forces over the...

Cautiously Optimistic: The Biden Administration’s Options in Yemen

Cautiously Optimistic: The Biden Administration’s Options in Yemen

Nov 16, 2020

As Joe Biden is declared US president-elect, expectations vary from pessimism on the left and among experts in the Middle East to optimism over lessons learned. In the US, the left has already sent the first warnings on expectations, focused on foreign policy and singling out Washington’s...

How Will Joe Biden Approach Iran?

How Will Joe Biden Approach Iran?

Oct 30, 2020

Addressing months of speculation over the future of US policy toward Tehran, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on September 22 at the UN General Assembly, “We are not a bargaining chip in the US elections and domestic policy.” Earlier this year, Democratic presidential nominee Joe...

The Future of the Iran Nuclear Deal

The Future of the Iran Nuclear Deal

Oct 19, 2020

The future of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) — the Iran nuclear deal — is uncertain. In the absence of US leadership, representatives of the United Kingdom, Germany, France, China, Russia and Iran met on September 1 in Vienna to discuss the accord. The deal, which imposes...

How the US Can Win Back Clout in Syria

How the US Can Win Back Clout in Syria

Oct 06, 2020

The humanitarian crisis in northeastern Syria is well documented. Nonetheless, despite the devastation that has occurred and the likely peril that is soon to come, pleas from aid groups, journalists and refugees have not been enough to move policymakers to take action. One reason for this is that...

What a Serial Traveler Thinks of Iran

What a Serial Traveler Thinks of Iran

Sep 30, 2020

Iran’s unpopular quest for nuclear energy has dominated news headlines for decades. This has left little room for reporting on less-discussed topics about the country. One of these is tourism. At a time of a pandemic, Iran continues to face grueling international sanctions and domestic...

Taking American Carnage to the Next Level

Taking American Carnage to the Next Level

Sep 18, 2020

It is a recent tradition among occupants of the White House, as they head out of office, to play a few practical jokes on their successors. The Clinton administration jesters, for instance, removed all the Ws from White House keyboards before handing over the keys to George W. Bush’s transition...

What Iran Can Learn From Saudi Arabia

What Iran Can Learn From Saudi Arabia

Aug 31, 2020

Over three years have passed since Mohammed bin Salman became the crown prince of Saudi Arabia. The challenges he has faced throughout this time have been too colossal for a 35-year-old leader to accommodate. Yet the prince has sought to give the impression of a strong social reformer. Indeed,...

Trump’s Failure in the Middle East

Trump’s Failure in the Middle East

Aug 19, 2020

A stunning and humiliating sign of America’s loss of leadership was the UN Security Council’s rejection on August 14 of the US attempt to extend the arms embargo on Iran. None of its traditional allies, including Britain, France and Germany, supported the US. Washington was only backed by...

Is Trump Preparing a Pre-Election Surprise?

Is Trump Preparing a Pre-Election Surprise?

Aug 14, 2020

In 2016, Alan Lichtman departed from conventional wisdom to predict a Donald Trump victory in that year’s presidential election. The political scientist was following something he called the “13 keys to the White House.” Using this relatively straightforward metric, Lichtman had correctly...

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