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September 24, 2019

Saudi Arabia
This Is the Moment That Decides the Future of the Middle East

If the United States is done fighting for Saudi Arabia’s oil, it's done fighting for the entire region.

U.S. President Donald Trump dances with a sword as he arrives to a welcome ceremony at Al Murabba Palace in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia May 20, 2017.

December 4, 2019

Turkey
Trump Is Happy to Seem Weak Next to Erdogan

The benefits of their personal relationship are clear for the Turkish president. But the U.S. president has his reasons, too.

U.S. President Donald Trump greets Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan during a joint news conference at the White House in Washington, U.S., November 13, 2019.

December 3, 2019

Syria
There’s Always a Next Time to Betray the Kurds

The Kurds have no choice but to always trust the United States—and to suffer the inevitable consequences.

A Kurdish Peshmerga soldier holds a Kurdistan flag during a deployment in the area near the northern Iraqi border with Syria

December 3, 2019

Saudi Arabia
Mohammed bin Salman Is Having a Fire Sale of His Political Power

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince will take money from investors in the national oil company—but he’ll be giving up far more than he thinks.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman attends a session of the Shura Council in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia November 20, 2019.

November 20, 2019

Elections and Voting
Julian Castro

CFR invited the presidential candidates challenging President Trump in the 2020 election to articulate their positions on twelve critical foreign policy issues. Candidates’ answers are posted exactly…

Julian Castro

October 29, 2019

Oil and Petroleum Products
How Iran Can Hold the World Oil Market Hostage

Iran poses an acute threat to oil infrastructure across the Middle East, potentially allowing it to extort concessions from world powers.    

Workers at the damaged site of a Saudi Aramco oil facility.

October 17, 2019

Syria
The High Price of Trump’s Great Betrayal

President Trump’s abandonment of the Kurds reinforced already existing doubts in the region and around the world that the United States remains a reliable ally.

Syria withdrawal

October 14, 2019

Syria
The United States Is Done Caring About Syria

A major new report about the Syrian war raises the question of whether Washington ever cared about it in the first place.

A child inspects a site hit by what activists said was an airstrike by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar el-Asaad at Arbin town in Damascus countryside, Syria July 21, 2015.

September 26, 2019

China
Communist China’s Painful Human Rights Story

The Chinese Communist Party has used arbitrary detention to maintain power since the People’s Republic of China was founded seventy years ago.

Shadows of people are seen in front of an illuminated poster of Xi Jinping.

September 13, 2019

United States
John Bolton’s Successor Will Struggle to Satisfy Donald Trump

Diplomacy could well come to occupy center stage for a president who relishes summitry.

Trump_John Bolton