A wave of Syrian refugees has caught Europe and the United States flat-footed, leaving the European Union scrambling to devise a plan to deal with those arriving on its shores and Americans debating our role in the matter. A humanitarian reaction is natural–but woefully inadequate, because refugees will keep coming as long as the Assad regime continues to brutally repress Syria’s Sunni majority. Only by bringing the conflict to an end will the flow of ever more thousands of refugees stop.
Critics of U.S. President Barack Obama’s Middle East strategy often complain that Obama lacks a strategic vision. This is almost exactly wrong. Obama came to office with a conviction that reducing the United States’ massive military and political investment in the Middle East was a vital national security interest in its own right.
Authors: Farideh Farhi, Sarah Birke, Matthew Levitt, Hussein Ibish, and Chuck Freilich
The nuclear deal inked by Iran and major powers has implications not just for proliferation, but Middle Eastern security as well. Five experts weigh in on what the deal means for regional powers and conflicts.
Overall, the landscape of Iran suggests few reasons for optimism: The Islamic Republic has negotiated an advantageous arms-control agreement, and the accord looks likely to survive opposition in the U.S. Congress. Tehran’s regime represses its citizens and has embarked on an expansion of its influence from the Persian Gulf to the banks of the Mediterranean.
In a review for Commentary, Elliott Abrams analyzes Ambassador Michael Oren’s new book Ally. Abrams notes that while Ambassador Oren frankly describes the various actions by President Obama that worsened relations between the U.S. and Israel, he is not candid about the supporters who defended Obama as he went down that path.
Writing in Politico, Philip Gordon explores the key issues the United States and Saudi Arabia should address during King Salman’s visit to Washington. It’s good the leaders are talking, but fundamental strategic gaps remain.
On August 5, President Obama took to the podium at American University to justify his controversial nuclear pact with Iran. The location was chosen with seeming care, as over five decades earlier, John F. Kennedy delivered a key speech at the same Washington school calling for arms control agreements with another adversary, the Soviet Union.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry held a press conference after the P5+1 and Iran negotiations concluded on August 14, 2015. He discussed how the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action addresses Iran's pathways to building a nuclear weapon.
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