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October 3, 2018

Yemen
America Is Not an Innocent Bystander in Yemen

This article first appeared here on ForeignPolicy.com on September 27, 2018.  Until the bombing of the USS Cole in October 2000, for U.S. policymakers, Yemen was a place of khat chews, faux touris…

Abdullah al-Khawlani sits by his son Waleed's grave, who was killed by last month's Saudi-led air strike that killed dozens, including children in Saada, Yemen September 4, 2018. His other son, Hafidh, who survived the strike, sits next to him.

May 8, 2017

Saudi Arabia
Why the Myth of Sunni-Shia Conflict Defines Middle East Policy—and Why It Shouldn’t

Is the Muslim world divided over an ancient sectarian conflict? Not really: It's twenty-first-century power politics.

BP05082017

February 27, 2017

Saudi Arabia
Should the U.S. Maintain its Alliance With Saudi Arabia? Unfortunately, We’re Stuck With Them

Our unhappy marriage with Saudi Arabia will probably endure—because the Saudis can’t be trusted on their own.

BP02272017

December 15, 2015

Global
Ten Most Significant World Events in 2015

Every year has its share of significant events. Two thousand fifteen is no exception. Here is my list of the ten most significant events of the year. You may want to read what follows closely. Severa…

Refugee-Syria-617-431

December 11, 2015

Yemen
Fiddling in Yemen: A Messy War’s Lessons for Global Conflict Management

Coauthored with Callie Plapinger, intern in the International Institutions and Global Governance program at the Council on Foreign Relations. As the world watches Syria burn, a tiny glimmer of hop…

Protesters demonstrate against the Saudi-led air strikes outside the United Nations offices in Sana'a, Yemen, on November 2, 2015.

February 26, 2015

United States
This Week: Mosul Offensive, Netanyahu’s Address, and Turkey’s Incursion

Significant Developments ISIS. Ashton Carter, wrapping up his first overseas trip as secretary of defense, met with top U.S. military and diplomatic officials in Kuwait on Monday to review the U.S…

U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter delivers remarks to troops at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait February 23, 2015 (Ernst/Courtesy Reuters).

January 29, 2015

United States
This Week: Hezbollah Attack, ISIS Rollback, and Jordan Hostage Standoff

Israel-Lebanon. Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said today that Israel had received reports via the UN indicating Hezbollah does not plan further military strikes following its attack yesterday…

Safi Yousef (2nd R), father of Islamic State captive Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasaesbeh, speaks at a news conference where he asked for Islamic State to pardon and release his son, in Amman January 29, 2015 (Hamed/Courtesy Reuters).

November 13, 2014

United States
This Week: Iran Negotiations, Jordan-Israel Crisis Talks, and New Syria Truce Proposal

Significant Developments Iran. Negotiators from Iran and the P5+1 countries hinted at a possible extension of the November 24 deadline for a nuclear deal, after three days of talks in Oman failed to…

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (L), EU envoy Catherine Ashton (C) and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif meet in Muscat November 10, 2014 (Kamm/Courtesy Reuters).

October 30, 2014

United States
This Week: Islamist Defeat in Tunisia, Increased Violence in Jerusalem, and Counter-Offensive in Kobani

Significant Developments Tunisia. The Tunisian election commission confirmed the victory of the secular party Nidaa Tunis in the country’s parliamentary elections held Sunday. It was Tunisia’s secon…

Supporters of the Nida Tounes (Call of Tunisia) secular party movement wave flags and shout slogans outside Nidaa Tounes headquarters in Tunis October 28, 2014 (Souissi/Courtesy Reuters).

October 8, 2014

United States
This Week: Turkey’s Dilemma and Egypt’s Beheadings

Significant Developments Turkey-Syria. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday called on the U.S.-led coalition to supply arms and training to opposition ground troops in Syria, arguing th…

A Turkish Kurdish protester throws a tear gas canister back at Turkish soldiers near the Mursitpinar border crossing on the Turkish-Syrian border in the Turkish town of Suruc in southeastern Sanliurfa province October 4, 2014 (Sezer/Courtesy Reuters).