On November 28, 2017, Prince Mutaib bin Abdullah was released from his makeshift “prison” in the Riyadh Ritz-Carlton Hotel. He was the first of more than fifteen high-profile Saudi businessmen and high-ranking officials detained by Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman of Saudi Arabia to be freed, yet only after he paid over one billion dollars… Read more »
Category: Middle East
On September 10, 2016, the U.S. State Department announced that it had struck a breakthrough ceasefire agreement with Russia in Syria, the site of a conflict that has in recent months rekindled Cold War tensions long-thought to be extinguished. The much-lauded deal promised a stop to all hostilities between Syrian rebels and the Assad regime,… Read more »
The United States’s relationship with Saudi Arabia is now more enigmatic than ever. Since 9/11, in which fifteen of the nineteen al-Qaeda hijackers were citizens of Saudi Arabia, the U.S. has held a heightened skepticism of Saudi military pursuits. Recent developments such as the conflicts in Syria and Yemen and the Justice Against Sponsors of… Read more »
Taking a deeper look at the Syrian Civil War’s participants other than ISIS.
The Iran Nuclear Deal is just one more measure in the fight against nuclear proliferation – a dangerous, complicated, and high risk fight with no end in sight.
Iran’s Supreme Leader has taken an unprecedented step towards resolving the “clash of civilizations” between the Western and Islamic worlds. Should we be optimistic?
A quick scan of Google Trends, Google’s worldwide search volume analysis tool, shows the predictably one-sided view of the combatants in Syria popularized by much of the Western media. ISIS, the ubiquitous upstart terrorist group responsible for out-radicalizing al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate, the al-Nusra Front, dominates the search interest (which is calculated proportionally). The Free Syrian… Read more »
If made into a blockbuster drama, the history of the Kurds in Turkey would make a killing at the box office. It is a tale of betrayal and bloodshed, repression and revolution. Turkish Kurds have experienced a turbulent past of subjugation, violence, economic assistance, violence, peace talks, and more violence. Turkey’s uncertainty in how to… Read more »
Ever since Hassan Rouhani was elected president of Iran in 2013, the West has looked towards Iran with a renewed sense of hope. Rouhani, a centrist armed with a platform of reform, represents perhaps the best promise of resumed relations with Iran since that country’s Islamic revolution in 1979. Prior to his election, tough sanctions… Read more »
The ground is dry and cracked. Tan desert stretches for miles in either direction and the air is saturated with brown dust. The fine sand from nearby dunes stirred up in the hot breeze. This is the Iraqi desert. It is nearly uninhabited, heat and drought having made it hostile to human life. Less than… Read more »