Middle East

Dubai commemorates hosting the 2020 World Expo.

Will Anyone Pay for Uncle Sam’s World Expo Pavilion?

A last-ditch scramble by Trump’s chief diplomat reveals frictions with Congress over how the State Department spends its money.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, former Vice President Joe Biden, and Sen. Bernie Sanders participate in a Democratic presidential debate in Atlanta, Georgia, on Nov. 20.

Democratic Frontrunners Are Wrong About Aid for Israel

Putting America’s annual $3.8 billion of military assistance to Israel on the chopping block makes for good politics. But it makes no sense for U.S. national security.

Mourners carry the coffin of a demonstrator killed during protests in Najaf, Iraq, on Dec. 7.

Democracy in Iraq Depends on Press Freedom

Amid a heavy-handed crackdown on protesters, the international community must help Iraqi journalists maintain the free flow of information.

Protesters gather at Tahrir Square in Baghdad, Iraq, amid ongoing anti-government demonstrations.

Iran’s Regional Influence Campaign Is Starting to Flop

Tehran has long sought to throw its weight around across the region. Now the Islamic Republic is facing a backlash in Iraq, Lebanon, and at home.

iran-un-security-council-letter-november-2019-homepage

Europeans Ramp up Pressure on Iran

Britain, France, and Germany say Iran’s ballistic missile program is inconsistent with the nuclear deal and improves its capacity to deliver nuclear payload. Tehran counters that Europeans have failed to meet obligations under the pact.

U.S. Ambassador to the EU Gordon Sondland after testifying before the House Intelligence Committee Nov. 20, 2019 in Washington.

Our Top Weekend Reads

Impeachment drama on full display in Washington, fallout of the U.S. recognition of Israeli settlements, and the legacy of Bolivian President Evo Morales.

A view of houses in the Israeli settlement of Kedumim in the West Bank.

U.S. Recognition of Settlements Will Harm Israel More Than It Helps

The Trump administration’s disdain for international consensus on the West Bank will encourage previously cautious governments to support BDS and Palestinian statehood.

Saudi Prince Khalid bin Salman

Can a Young Saudi Prince End the War in Yemen?

Khalid bin Salman is working full time to extricate Saudi Arabia from the disastrous conflict begun by his brother. Some regional and U.S. officials are cautiously optimistic. 

View of Tehran shops that were destroyed after nationwide demonstrations broke out in protest of fuel price hikes and led to widespread destruction of property, on Nov. 20.

Iran Protests Suggest Trump Sanctions Are Inflicting Serious Pain

The regime has survived uprisings in the past. But now it is starting to kill demonstrators in great numbers.

A Palestinian boy sits on a chair as Israeli authorities demolish and relocate a school site

Trump Crushes Palestinian Hopes Again

The U.S. Middle East peace plan may be in a coma. But that hasn’t stopped Washington from handing major diplomatic victories to Israel.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman speaks during Saudi-Russian talks in Riyadh on Oct. 14.

Shrunken Aramco Listing Could Crimp Saudi Crown Prince’s Bigger Plans

By failing to attract major international investors, Mohammed bin Salman may have to kiss his Saudi Vision 2030 goodbye.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and U.S. President Donald Trump participate in a joint news conference in the East Room of the White House on Nov. 13 in Washington.

Trump Is Happy to Seem Weak Next to Erdogan

The benefits of their personal relationship are clear for the Turkish president. But the U.S. president has his reasons, too.

Bolivia's interim President Jeanine Áñez (center) speaks during a press conference at the presidential palace.

Our Top Weekend Reads

Uncertainty in Bolivia after the resignation of President Evo Morales, a resurgence of Iraqi nationalism challenges long-term U.S. interests, and the United States is using diplomacy to crack into Greenland.

U.S. President Donald Trump and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan take part in a joint press conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington on Nov. 13.

How Erdogan Played Trump (Again)

Turkey’s recalcitrant president won a White House platform to spout his views. The U.S. president got little in return.

Iraqi protesters clash with security forces at Baghdad's Khallani Square during ongoing anti-government demonstrations on Nov. 11.

Shades of Saddam

With killings, beatings, and disappearances, the Iraqi government is growing more authoritarian in response to the protests.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

Erdogan Wants to Redraw the Middle East’s Ethnic Map

Turkey’s plans in Syria are part of a long and dark history of population transfer stretching back to the Ottoman era.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman gestures during a press conference in Riyadh on April 25, 2016.

Mohammed bin Salman Is Having a Fire Sale of His Political Power

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince will take money from investors in the national oil company—but he’ll be giving up far more than he thinks.

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