Despite a spiral of violence in Afghanistan, the United States must reorient its security-first strategy and consider immediate talks with Taliban and other militant fighters, says independent analyst Matt Waldman.
Daniel C. Kurtzer, a former ambassador to Israel and Egypt, says the negotiating atmosphere in the Middle East is looking "pretty dreary," but that he sees signs of hope in the Obama administration’s efforts to advance progress.
Daniel C. Kurtzer, a former top U.S. diplomat in the Mideast and a recent adviser to Barack Obama, says divisions in the Israeli electorate will paralyze the political process and could lead to an extended "hiatus" in peace-making.
Experts say instability in south Sudan should be looked at in tandem with the crisis in Darfur, and some call for addressing Sudan’s problems in a more unified way to help forestall an escalation of violence.
Aaron David Miller, a former top U.S. Mideast negotiator, says that naming George J. Mitchell as the new special envoy for Arab-Israeli issue shows the Obama administration is substituting "process for substance."
Middle East expert Richard W. Murphy says the United States runs the risk of delaying the Israeli-Palestinian peace process by blackballing Hamas. Though opening relations with the group may be necessary, he says he does not expect it to come quickly.