Bill Spindle and Margaret Coker explore the historical divides between Iraq and Saudi Arabia and demonstrate how recent uprisings in the region have heightened tensions between the two countries.
The Saudi intervention to help quell a Shia-dominated uprising in neighboring Bahrain is misguided and the kingdom should instead focus on guiding the way to political modernization, writes CFR's Ray Takeyh.
Jean-Francois Seznec analyzes the implications behind the Saudi Arabia's intervention in Bahrain.
Today's 'Day of Rage' in Saudi Arabia fizzled, but the Saudis are tense about protests in the neighboring monarchy of Bahrain and U.S. support for the recent revolutionary wave in the Middle East, says Saudi expert Rachel Bronson.
Michael A. Levi says potential disruption of oil production in Saudi Arabia highlights the need to develop short term crisis management in the event of a geopolitical oil price shock.
In The National Interest, Bruce Riedel comments on the al-Qaeda plot to terrorize "Obama's city" of Chicago on the eve of U.S. elections back in 2010, noting that the Saudi spy who defected to our allies underscores the importance of U.S. alliances in the Middle East.
Four experts discuss the merits of the Obama administration's proposed $60 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia.
President Obama and Saudi King Abdullah's meeting on June 29 will include difficult conversations about the Middle East, where Saudis want to be convinced that the United States is serious about supporting a two-state solution for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, says CFR's Thomas Lippman.
Thomas W. Lippman examines a looming food and water crisis in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia's program to deradicalize suspected terrorists has experienced some high-profile failures but could still provide important lessons for other states, says CFR's Marisa Porges.
Marisa Porges considers the "unorthodox" solution of rehabilitation for Guantanamo detainees.
Najwa and Omar bin Laden--first wife and fourth son of Osama bin Laden--paint a "horrifying portrait" of one of the greatest criminals of our time, writes Thomas Lippman in his review of their book, "Growing Up Bin Laden." Written with Jean Sasson, the book provides intimate details about the bin Ladens' family life but does not add much to our understanding of al-Qaeda, says Lippman.
The Saudi royals' risky strategy of dealing personally with defecting al-Qaida members, argues Bernard Haykel, "partly explains al-Qaida's defeat in Saudi Arabia."
This Middle East Institute Policy Brief examines Saudi strategy and response if Iran acquired nuclear weapons, concluding that the Saudis would much prefer an accommodation with Iran and progress toward its long-stated goal of making the entire region a zone free of nuclear weapons.
Rehab didn't work for al-Qaeda's deputy in Yemen. Can it work for any terrorist?
F. Gregory Gause III, a leading expert on Iraq and Saudi Arabia, says a lack of leadership among Iraq's Shiite politicians is holding up approval of a U.S.-Iraqi security pact. He also talks about new Saudi efforts to engage the Taliban in a peace parley.
Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf states seek to diversify their economies beyond oil, but the project comes laden with risk.
Meetings between President Bush and Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah highlight emerging policy challenges to a relationship that stretches well beyond oil.
In February, Tamara Cofman Wittes and Isobel Coleman met with business leaders, academics, journalists, and civic activists in Riyadh and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Among Wittes and Coleman's key findings are that many Saudis welcomed the emergence of a more open atmosphere, pointing to King Abdullah's ascension to the throne, dynamism in neighboring Gulf states, and a new "post-post-9/11" environment as key catalysts for the change. Yet, there was frustration at the unpredictability and arbitrariness of the newly expanded social and political space. The next U.S. administration may have a new, but narrow, window of opportunity to reintroduce itself to Saudi Arabia. Many Saudis argued for the creation of a deeper, multi-dimensional relationship between both countries that engages civil society, not just the government and business sectors.
To ensure the success of Myanmar's historic democratic transition, the United States should revise its outdated and counterproductive sanctions policy.
Blackwill and Campbell analyze the rise of Chinese President Xi Jinping and call for a new American grand strategy for Asia.
Williams argues that greater U.S. involvement is necessary to enhance the quality and success of peacekeeping missions.
Kurlantzick offers the sharpest analysis yet of what state capitalism’s emergence means for democratic politics around the world. More
In a cogent analysis of why the United States is losing ground as a world power, Blackwill and Harris explore the statecraft of geoeconomics. More
Takeyh and Simon reframe the legacy of U.S. involvement in the Arab world from 1945 to 1991 and shed new light on the makings of the contemporary Middle East. More
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2015 Annual Report. The Annual Report spotlights new initiatives, high-profile events, and authoritative scholarship from CFR experts, and includes a message from CFR President Richard N. Haass.
Read and download »