In a growing international power struggle over regional influence in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia appears to be consolidating its control of the Red Sea by establishing a security alliance as part of a strategy to protect Israel and contain Iran.
Climate change, dams, and warfare have pushed Iraq’s legendary southern marshes to the edge. Rains revived them after they nearly dried up last year, but the wetlands’ uncertain survival depends on international cooperation.
Declining oil and gas production since the mid-2000s and globally low oil prices since 2014 have punched a big hole in Algeria’s economy. Continuing to pin its hopes on a recovery of oil prices, the North African nation is propping up its massive hydrocarbon industry by tapping into the country’s promising renewable energy potential.
Despite the UN’s insistence that governments develop a plan for the return of thousands of children born to their ISIS-member nationals who are now living in dire conditions in refugee camps in war-torn Syria, only a few Western countries have accepted the return of these minors.
Lebanon hopes to profit from the reconstruction in Syria and the country that it’s most seeking to work with in the process is China. Yet what remains to be seen is how willing the Chinese are to accept high-level risks when it comes to making large-scale investments in Syria that could benefit Lebanon.
The Five Pill...
My colleague Ambassador Ed Gabriel (ret.), President and CEO of the American Task Force on Lebanon (ATFL), recently gave a presentation about Christians in the Middle East, and it pushed me to consider the genesis of my own involvement in Middle East affairs.
In our divided times, the New York Sephardic Jewish Film Festival creates space for much needed international and interfaith dialogue.
Having survived the Khashoggi scandal with seeming impunity, MbS’ recent mass executions and an actual crucifixion in Saudi Arabia during the Easter holidays indicates his resolve to consolidate political authority at home and ride the U.S.-led anti-Iran wave in the region.
Egypt has allegedly withdrawn from the U.S.-led Middle East Strategic Alliance. While Cairo’s recent move remains unofficial, it could have ramifications for the future development of the security bloc.