Middle East and North Africa

Foreign Affairs Article

Bank Shots

Author: Rachel L. Loeffler

Financial sanctions have become a key tool of U.S. foreign policy. Measures taken against Iran and North Korea make clear that this new financial statecraft can be effective, but true success will require persuading global banks to accept a shared sense of risk.

See more in Iran; Sanctions; North Korea

Foreign Affairs Article

Adrift on the Nile

Author: Steven A. Cook

Bruce Rutherford's Egypt After Mubarak is an ambitious effort to explain how the Muslim Brotherhood, the judiciary, and the business sector can work in parallel, if not exactly together, to influence Egypt's political future.

See more in Egypt

Foreign Affairs Article

The Latter-Day Sultan

Author: Akbar Ganji

The real decision-maker in Iran is Supreme Leader Khamenei not President Ahmedinejad. Blaming Iran's problems on President Ahmadinejad inaccurately suggests that Iran's problems will go away when Ahmadinejad does.

See more in Iran

Foreign Affairs Article

Beyond Darfur

Author: Andrew S. Natsios

While the crisis in Darfur simmers, the larger problem of Sudan's survival as a state is becoming increasingly urgent. Old tensions between the Arabs of the Nile River valley, who have held power for a century, and marginalized groups on the country's periphery are turning into a national crisis. Engagement with Khartoum may be the only way to avert another civil war in Sudan, and even that may not be enough.

See more in Sudan

Foreign Affairs Article

The Costs of Containing Iran

Authors: Vali R. Nasr and Ray Takeyh

The Bush administration wants to contain Iran by rallying the support of Sunni Arab states and now sees Iran's containment as the heart of its Middle East policy: a way to stabilize Iraq, declaw Hezbollah, and restart the Arab-Israeli peace process. But the strategy is unsound and impractical, and it will probably further destabilize an already volatile region.

See more in Iran; Conflict Prevention

Foreign Affairs Article

Who Lost Iraq?

Author: James Dobbins

The current debate over the United States' failures in Iraq needs to go beyond bumper-sticker conclusions -- no more preemption, no more democracy promotion, no more nation building -- and acrimonious finger-pointing. Only by carefully considering where U.S. leaders, institutions, and policies have been at fault can valuable lessons be learned and future debacles avoided.

See more in Iraq; Wars and Warfare; United States