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Middle East Politics

Israel and Saudi Arabia: Forging Ties on Quicksand

James Dorsey | Posted 07.13.2014 | World
James Dorsey

As states, Saudi Arabia and Israel share few, if any common values, despite some cultural values that are common to Wahhabism, the austere form of Islam adopted by the kingdom, and ultra-orthodox Jews. But they increasingly have common interests.

Peace Options for Afghanistan

Nake M. Kamrany | Posted 03.11.2014 | Politics
Nake M. Kamrany

After 12 years of inconclusive war, the moral imperatives of the situation dictate that the human suffering must cease. It is high time that a judicious decision is made that is consonant with President Barack Obama's repeated promise that the war in Afghanistan will end in the year 2014.

Israeli and Palestinian Women Meet on a Mountaintop

Diana Bletter | Posted 02.11.2014 | Religion
Diana Bletter

And despite the Israel-Hezbollah War in 2006, two wars between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, continued rocket fire, and worldwide conflicts between Muslims and non-Muslims, our women's group in Akko continues to meet -- an accomplishment in itself.

Flexing Saudi Muscles

Allan Topol | Posted 01.23.2014 | World
Allan Topol

For the most part, the Saudi monarchy, discrete and secretive, was willing to let their longtime ally, the United States, take the lead in pursuing a Middle East agenda with which the Saudis generally concurred. All of that has changed within the last year.

A Short Guide To The Middle East

Posted 08.26.2013 | World

Who says politics in the Middle East are complicated? Financial Times reader KN al-Sabah manages to bring you everything you need to know about allian...

Egypt's Third Way: A Blend of Islamism and Militarism

James Dorsey | Posted 10.04.2013 | World
James Dorsey

The U.S. quest for stability in the Middle East that amounted to support for autocratic regimes at the expense of democratic values was in part fueled by fear -- fear that change in countries like Saudi Arabia threatened to open the door to the replacement of conservative, pro-Western rulers by military officers steeped in a vision that combined nationalism and Islamism.

Gulf Rivalries Spill on to the Soccer Pitch

James Dorsey | Posted 09.24.2013 | World
James Dorsey

The battle between Iran and various Gulf state for the identity of the energy-rich region has spilled onto its soccer pitches. It's the Persian Gulf League vs. the Arabian Gulf League.

American Attitudes Toward Israel

Mitchell G. Bard | Posted 06.25.2013 | World
Mitchell G. Bard

The situation in other parts of the world may be different, but in the United States support for Israel has never been stronger.

What Is Wrong and What Can (and Cannot) Be Put Right in the Middle East

Dan Schueftan | Posted 06.14.2013 | World
Dan Schueftan

President Obama's recent Middle East trip reflects a measure of recognition that some of the most fundamental assumptions about the region that are prevalent in the West could be flawed.

Does Foreign Intervention Doom the Arab Spring? A Conversation With Trita Parsi and Stephen Zunes

Iara Lee | Posted 04.16.2013 | World
Iara Lee

After the Western intervention in Libya, a number of people argued that it was a success and that it saved Libyan lives, it helped the Libyans oust a dictator, and it did not result in military occupation.

Another Shoe Is Thrown

Maryam Zar | Posted 04.09.2013 | World
Maryam Zar

On the first state visit of an Iranian leader to the nation of Egypt since 1979, during a visit that alarmed many, a shoe has been thrown.

Obama and the Middle East: Rhetoric Versus Reality

Michael Hughes | Posted 10.16.2012 | World
Michael Hughes

President Barack Obama's actions in the Muslim world have failed to live up to the principles espoused in his soaring speeches, according to Fawaz Gerges in his new book, Obama and the Middle East.

Sharks Bleeding Syria for its Carcass

Adil E. Shamoo | Posted 10.08.2012 | World
Adil E. Shamoo

The West and its allies in the region have tried to avoid playing an ugly role in this bloodshed, but the pressures in and out of Syria are leading us to begin a descent into unconscionable interference.

Time for a Different Way of Thinking About National Security

Manochehr Dorraj | Posted 08.07.2012 | College
Manochehr Dorraj

When most Americans think about national security, they consider wars abroad and fighting terrorists. National security is perceived to be the responsibility of the military and intelligence forces.

Palestinian Attitudes Toward Israel

Michael Sharnoff | Posted 07.24.2012 | World
Michael Sharnoff

A third intifada could have disastrous consequences for all parties involved. Yet it remains unclear if a new uprising would be directed against Palestinian leaders for failing to deliver realistic change and reform or against Israel -- or both.

Ingenious Political Coup Or Insidious Political Scheme

Alon Ben-Meir | Posted 07.14.2012 | World
Alon Ben-Meir

By expanding the coalition, Netanyahu has provided himself with the ideal political environment to reach a peace agreement with the Palestinians and bridge the social gap domestically.

Politics and Policies: Dealing With Ankara No Turkey Trot for Damascus

Claude Salhani | Posted 07.03.2012 | World
Claude Salhani

Turkey is a real force to be reckoned with in the Levant. And if memories serve well, upsetting the Ottoman Turks never proved to be a very intelligent policy. Upsetting modern-day Turks may not differ.

An Iranian's View on a Nuclear Iran

Paul Heroux | Posted 05.29.2012 | World
Paul Heroux

While it is not wise to use one interview as a basis to form an opinion or policy, one point of view is better than no point of view. I am fortunate to know someone from Iran briefly studying in the U.S. that is willing to talk about this issue from an Iranian point of view before he returns to Iran.

At Sea in Afghanistan

Michael Brenner | Posted 04.10.2012 | World
Michael Brenner

Last week the Obama administration sent clear signals that it was planning to fold its tents in Afghanistan earlier than previously advertised. That set off a flurry of speculation as to why and whether we were giving up on the mission. Most of the talk is about how a retreat could be accomplished with credibility intact. After all, Afghanistan is where the "war on terror" began more than ten years ago. Once again, though, we are focusing on means and modalities without specifying the ends. And the bitter truth is that the Obama administration's foreign policy team is witless about too many things. There is a strong case to made that it is not competent to be the custodian of the nation's welfare in the larger world; nor is it honest about its shortcomings.

Is Iran's Nuclear Program Slowly Boiling Us?

Paul Heroux | Posted 04.02.2012 | World
Paul Heroux

While the West could be all wrong about Iran's intentions, the evidence uncovered by the IAEA does not suggest this to be the case.

Big Change Whether We Like It or Not

Andrew Bacevich | Posted 01.14.2012 | Politics
Andrew Bacevich

Proclaim it from the rooftops: No, America is not "over." Yet a growing accumulation of evidence suggests that America today is not the America of 1945. Everyone else on the planet understands this. Perhaps it's finally time for Americans to do so as well.

Cold War or Employment and Peace?

Kevin Bermeister | Posted 11.23.2011 | World
Kevin Bermeister

There is only one avenue for a sustainable peace: finding a means to employ the vast populace in Israel, Jordan and Lebanon who currently endure the indignities and difficulties of unemployment.

Recognize Palestine and Reaffirm Israel As a Jewish State

Rabbi Michael Lerner | Posted 11.14.2011 | World
Rabbi Michael Lerner

The Palestinian state that is now emerging should be recognized as an affirmation action state, recognized by the United Nations before it has control over any territory of its own as a way to alleviate the special suffering of the Palestinian people.

Critics of Polls Disrespect Arab Public Opinion

James Zogby | Posted 10.06.2011 | World
James Zogby

When over 4,000 Arabs from Morocco to the Arab Gulf States are asked their views about critical issues of importance to the region and to peace, it is important that they be heard and understood. For too long, Arabs have been ignored.

The Middle East and the Debt Ceiling Conflict -- The Similarities and Challenges of Ideological Conflicts

Doug Noll | Posted 09.28.2011 | Politics
Doug Noll

Those of us outside of Washington D.C. are faced with potential disaster if our elected representatives cannot compromise on debt ceiling limits. The ...