Middle East Relations

'Warbirds Over Wanaka' Airshow

Russia delivered advanced air-defense systems to Syria after the recent airplane-downing incident, but its desire to check Iran could permit continued Israeli operations in the Syrian skies. On September 17, the Syrian Air Defense Force shot down a Russian Ilyushin 20 (IL-20) surveillance aircraft following the latest Israeli Air Force (IAF) strike on Iranian precision-missile-production… Keep reading →

An Iranian war-boat fires a missile duri

Despite the appointment of a radical anti-American commander, Iran’s naval forces are unlikely to resume frequent provocations without a strategic shift at the very top of the regime. On August 23, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei promoted the acting commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy (IRGCN), Alireza Tangsiri, to full commander, replacing Ali Fadavi,… Keep reading →

Life In Riyadh

Two experts discuss how Washington can use its warming relations with Cairo and Riyadh to foster soft-power reform campaigns. On January 18, Joseph Braude and Samuel Tadros addressed a Policy Forum at The Washington Institute. Braude is an advisor to Al-Mesbar Studies and Research Center and a senior fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute. Tadros… Keep reading →

Air Force Aircraft & Personnel Depart For The Middle East

Washington and its Gulf allies are pressuring Oman on weapons smuggling and other issues, but the president should not discount the depth and potential usefulness of the sultan’s ties with Tehran. The sleepy Persian Gulf sultanate of Oman has emerged as a wild card in the Trump administration’s push to roll back Iranian power across… Keep reading →

Iran v Bahrain

Their wildly divergent responses to Iran’s protests may be the first salvos in an imminent standoff over the future of the nuclear agreement and international sanctions. If the international response thus far is any indicator, Iran’s protests risk driving a wedge between the United States and Europe, potentially imperiling the West’s ability to forge a… Keep reading →

Iraq Security Forces Conduct Operations in Lead-up to US Drawdown

Iraq’s existing security institutions need bolstering, and the Popular Mobilization Forces can be incorporated into that process with the coalition’s help. On December 9, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi officially declared victory in Iraq’s war against the Islamic State (IS). When he first took office in 2014, the group controlled a third of the country, including… Keep reading →

Life In Riyadh

RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA— U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry was received by H.E. Khalid Al Falih, Saudi Minister of Energy, Industry, and Mineral Resources, during his visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The two parties discussed means to enhance the relations between the two countries in the energy fields, including cooperation opportunities in clean energy. In… Keep reading →

U.S. Navy Sets Destroyers On Standby For Possible Strike On Syria

Despite the end of CIA support to the rebels, Washington can still counter the Islamic State by coordinating more deeply with Israel and Jordan, and by managing other regional actors. In July 2017, the Trump administration ended the four-year-old CIA program that provided direct assistance, in the form of salaries and arms, to various Syrian… Keep reading →

Eastern Libya Continues Fight Against Gaddafi Forces

Rather than leaving the job to Europe, Washington can articulate a clear Libya policy at the September UN General Assembly meeting, thereby making a political deal more likely to achieve and enforce. As Ghassan Salamé, the fifth Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Libya, seeks to stimulate the Libyan peace process, several new international dynamics… Keep reading →

Iraq Security Forces Conduct Operations in Lead-up to US Drawdown

Despite collusion between the LAF and Hezbollah, the United States may still have an interest in funding the Lebanese military. Hezbollah, the Iran-backed Shia militia, is winding down its offensive against Sunni Islamist militants in Arsal, a Lebanese town near the Syrian border. In recent weeks, Hezbollah backed by Syrian airpower, pressed into the outskirts… Keep reading →

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