U.S. diplomatic cables released by Wikileaks have given a new insight into American policy in Lebanon, especially efforts to counter Hizballah. Hizballah’s willingness to use a combination of hard power through violence and coercion, combined with a softer touch via extensive patronage networks has given them unmatched control over the Shi’a community since the 2005 […]
This article discusses the 2006/2007 U.S. troop surge in Iraq. It examines to what extent the shift in strategy was responsible for the dramatic drop in violence as well as the implications for U.S. strategy in future conflicts. This article can be found in PDF version here. INTRODUCTION Adopted at the end of […]
This article surveys all aspects of U.S. Middle East policy under the Obama administration, critiques this strategy and premises, and suggests what U.S. policy should be. A previous version of this article was published in The Journal of International Security Affairs (Fall/Winter 2011). The Obama administration has comprehensively lost its way on Middle East policy […]
The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) has been experiencing deteriorating parameters for both food production and consumption for some time. Agricultural output is constrained by limited water resources, diminishing arable land, and poor public policy. Consumption is driven by high population growth and subsidies that encourage waste. The region is food insecure, both on […]
There is a small detail at the end of Obama’s big Middle East speech that everyone has overlooked up until now but which shows how inept this administration is at understanding the Israel-Palestinian issue and why it continually makes Israel mistrustful. In doing his balancing act on Israeli and Palestinian fears and hostility, he says […]
In 2001, as a reaction to the September 11 terror attacks, the United States led an international campaign to capture those members of al-Qa’ida responsible for the attacks. A second objective focused on rebuilding Afghanistan so that after decades of conflict, its people would have a better future. However, despite a huge commitment by the international community, Afghanistan remains highly unstable and volatile. This article explores the reasons the international effort in Afghanistan has failed to deliver peace, security, and stability.