• Policy Analysis
    North AfricaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Tunisia’s Fragmented and Polarized Political Landscape

    Mar 28, 2019Daniel Brumberg

    In the upcoming parliamentary and presidential elections in November 2019, if Tunisia’s politicians continue to battle under the umbrella of a largely feigned …

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The New Shtayyeh Government in Palestine: Challenges and Prospects

    Mar 20, 2019Khalil E. Jahshan

    The newly designated Palestinian prime minister faces difficult challenges in forming an inclusive government at a time of serious divisions in Palestinian ran…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Mutually Connected Fronts between Israel and Iran

    Mar 18, 2019Joe Macaron

    Although a direct confrontation between Israel and Iran is improbable at this time, the two countries share three potential war fronts in Lebanon, Syria, and t…

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    It May Be Time to Go Beyond Zionism

    Mar 8, 2019Laurie King

    It is necessary to distinguish between hatred of Jews and valid and overdue criticism of Israel’s violations of international humanitarian law.

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Bankrolling Kushner’s Mideast Plan

    The Palestinians have no option but to reject the Trump Administration’s peace plan because of its failure to publicly and explicitly guarantee Palestinian sta…

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Trump Administration Is Buying Time in Syria

    Feb 26, 2019Joe Macaron

    It is no secret that Trump does not see any financial or strategic value in keeping US forces in Syria; however, his policy there has been like an aimless roll…

  • Policy Analysis
    IraqConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Iran Should Worry about New Iraq-Jordan Relations

    The recent economic agreement between Iraq and Jordan sends signals to Iran that Iraq may find Arab alternatives to its relations with the Islamic Republic.

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Manbij Attack Exposes the Vulnerabilities of US Policy in Syria

    Jan 17, 2019Joe Macaron

    The US withdrawal from Syria may encourage Turkey and Russia to fill the vacuum, but IS’s Manbij attack may persuade Trump to stay a bit longer there.

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Deteriorating Circumstances in Syria and Yemen Overshadow US Tactical Success

    Jan 16, 2019Charles W. Dunne

    Changing circumstances in Syria and Yemen and Washington’s shifting strategies have exposed the Trump Administration’s claims of success as threadbare.

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Abbas and Netanyahu Turn to Elections to Solidify Control

    Dec 28, 2018Yousef Munayyer

    As a new year begins in Israel/Palestine, leaders there are seeking to use elections to sideline challenges and challengers, solidify their grip on power, and …

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfUS Foreign Policy

    No American Traction on Resolving the GCC Crisis

    Dec 27, 2018Charles W. Dunne

    To maintain or reassert its leadership role in the Gulf region, the United States must effectively and forcefully address the reasons behind the start of the G…

  • Viewpoint
    SyriaUS Foreign Policy

    Trump’s Syria Announcement Underscores US Policy Meltdown

    Dec 20, 2018Daniel Brumberg

    The withdrawal of US troops will make it easier for Moscow and Tehran to advance a political solution ensuring that Assad and his allies remain in power.

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    What If Trump’s Deal Materializes?

    The content of Trump’s “ultimate deal,” as leaked by its architects and fans, leaves little room for optimism, warm reception, and successful implementation am…

  • Policy Analysis
    QatarThe GCC

    The GCC Is Meeting Again: What to Expect?

    Regardless of what happens at the GCC summit on December 9, the likelihood is that the council as it functioned up until 2017 is not coming back anytime soon, …

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    US Economic Warfare and Iran’s Politics of Muddling Through

    Nov 30, 2018Daniel Brumberg

    If the Trump Administration and its Middle East allies are counting on capitulation by Iran’s leaders, they are likely to be disappointed in knowing that these…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Israel and Gaza: From the Brink of War to the Brink of Elections

    Nov 27, 2018Yousef Munayyer

    After new elections in Israel, there is little reason to expect anything other than another right-wing Israeli government led by Benjamin Netanyahu.

  • Policy Analysis
    LibyaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Libyans Should Decide Their Own Future: An Interview with Hani Shennib

    Nov 20, 2018Imad K. Harb

    The failure to address the root causes of the Libyan conflict is the main reason why Libya has not arrived at a peaceful resolution to its ongoing troubles.

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Why is Netanyahu so desperate for a ceasefire with Hamas?

    Nov 20, 2018Ibrahim Fraihat

    The ceasefire in Gaza has destabilized Netanyahu's government, yet he has no other choice but to commit to it.

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    A Weakened Arab Gulf Should Not Normalize Relations with Israel

    Nov 9, 2018Imad K. Harb

    Today, Israel seems to be closer to officially normalizing its existence in the wider Arab world by aggressively pursuing relations with the monarchies of the …

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    A Flawed American Sanctions Policy on Iran

    Nov 9, 2018Daniel Brumberg

    The capacity of the United States and its regional friends to affect the Middle East’s geostrategic map could diminish further as flaws in the American strateg…

  • Viewpoint
    YemenConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Is the United States Serious about Ending the Yemen Conflict?

    Bipartisan congressional pressure and the Khashoggi murder may have forced the Trump Administration to revise its position on Yemen.

  • Policy Analysis
    SyriaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Will the Istanbul Summit Offer Hope for Syria?

    Nov 1, 2018Joe Macaron

    The Istanbul summit on Syria was the first serious attempt in years to advance a viable Syrian political process; but obstacles remain, including American-Russ…

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Sochi Agreement on Idlib Tests Russian-Turkish Relations

    Oct 19, 2018Joe Macaron

    The irregularities in implementing the Sochi Agreement regarding Idlib will put Russian-Turkish relations to the test and may doom the Idlib ceasefire.

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Oslo at 25: Long Dead and Now Finally Buried?

    Sep 24, 2018Yousef Munayyer

    For 25 years, the Oslo process has been dying a slow death because of Palestinian weakness, overemphasis on ensuring Israeli security, and the Trump Administra…

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Battle for Idlib: Three Scenarios

    Sep 5, 2018Marwan Kabalan

    After using de-escalation zones to take over one rebel-held area after the other, Russia has its eyes now on Idlib.

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Complications of the Houthis’ Role in the Red Sea

    The Houthis’ attack on two Saudi Arabian tankers near the Bab al-Mandab waterway prompts questions about whether they and Iran can disrupt shipping in the Red …

  • Viewpoint
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Congress is Rattled by the US Role in Yemen—But Will It Matter?

    Aug 22, 2018Marcus Montgomery

    Criticism from Capitol Hill has been largely symbolic because few in the Republican majorities in the House and Senate have opted to challenge the president on…

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Shifting the Balance of Power from Ramallah to Gaza

    Aug 17, 2018Khalil E. Jahshan

    If successfully implemented, the latest agreement on a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas may pave the way for a radical change in Palestinian power from the …

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Why Are Israel and Hamas Negotiating a Cease-fire Now?

    Aug 16, 2018Yousef Munayyer

    As the Trump Administration speaks of a “deal of the century,” questions arise about why Israel and Hamas are negotiating for a truce in the Gaza Strip.

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Ticking Time Bomb of Northern Syria

    Aug 15, 2018Mustafa Gurbuz

    The Assad regime’s coming Idlib offensive will cause serious troubles and endanger the US security structure in northern Syria.

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Putin Arbitrates Iran’s Presence in Syria

    Aug 10, 2018Daniel Brumberg

    Rumors of a rocky Russian-Iranian alliance have been greatly exaggerated. Putin as arbiter in Syria will only do what serves Russia’s influence there.

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    A Dangerous Confusion in US Iran Policy

    Aug 7, 2018Charles W. Dunne

    The latest Trump Iran tweet and announcement revealed a lack of a coherent Iran policy in the wake of the US withdrawal from the JCPOA regulating Iran’s nuclea…

  • Policy Analysis
    LibyaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Facing Extremism and Preventing Fragmentation in Libya

    Jul 24, 2018Mustafa Gurbuz

    With deepening economic and security crises, Libya may be headed toward a future of fragmentation in which extremist groups find a fertile breeding ground.

  • Policy Analysis
    IraqConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Future of Iraqi-Kuwaiti Relations: Overcoming a Troubled History

    Iraq and Kuwait are developing cordial relations after an acrimonious history. Kuwait wants a stable and non-threatening neighbor while Iraq seeks Kuwait’s fin…

  • Policy Analysis
    EgyptConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Egypt-Ethiopia Nile Water Crisis: a Cause for Regional Tensions?

    Jul 5, 2018Daniel Stoll

    While the Ethiopian dam on the Nile could be a source of conflict in east Africa, and while relations among Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan will remain unsettled fo…

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Raging—and Surprising—Battle for Southern Syria

    Jul 5, 2018Radwan Ziadeh

    The Syrian regime began its assault on the southern city of Daraa toward the end of June, assisted as elsewhere in Syria by Russian warplanes and Iran-supporte…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Iran’s Syria Predicament

    Jul 4, 2018Marwan Kabalan

    As Syria's civil war draws to a close, Iran's activity in the country is coming under increasing scrutiny. The US, Israel, and the Gulf states are all working …

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Can Assad Truly Assert His Control over Syria?

    Jun 12, 2018Mustafa Gurbuz

    Despite the Assad regime’s consolidation of power, reviving the territorial integrity of Syria is a mirage. Moscow’s rise as a key power broker and the Russia-…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Pompeo Digs a Deeper Hole for US Iran Policy

    Jun 5, 2018Daniel Brumberg

    Pompeo's May 21 speech indicates that where Iran is concerned, the US is returning to a policy of "zero enrichment" backed up by economic warfare. But the Whit…

  • Policy Analysis
    QatarConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Needless Crisis in the Arabian Gulf

    The Trump Administration would do well to work with the Saudis and Emiratis to identify a face-saving way to back down and end the blockade of Qatar.

  • Policy Analysis
    KuwaitConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Kuwait’s GCC Mediation: Incentives and Reasons for Failure

    Jun 1, 2018Marwan Kabalan

    Kuwait has been a mediator in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) since the first crisis of 2013-2014 between Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and …

  • Viewpoint
    LibyaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    An Accord for Libya?

    Jun 1, 2018Imad K. Harb

    Amid the many conflicts rending the Arab world today, the one in Libya recently took a hopeful turn toward a peace process despite the violence still wracking …

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Anti-Qatar Embargo Grinds Toward Strategic Failure

    Jun 1, 2018Gabriel Collins

    “The experience of the past thus clearly suggests that blockades or embargoes do not always produce the results originally sought when the decision for action …

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Iraq will Remain a US-Iran Point of Contention

    The United States’ more belligerent position toward Iran, in the wake of the Trump Administration’s recent withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, is likely to …

  • Viewpoint
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    A Crack in the Russian-Iranian Alliance in Syria?

    May 23, 2018Joe Macaron

    In a rare instance since the Russian intervention in Syria in September 2015, the policy differences between Moscow and Tehran have become public. This raised …

  • Viewpoint
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    A Dangerous Israeli-Iranian Escalation in Syria

    May 11, 2018Joe Macaron

    In the most dangerous escalation since the establishment of the Golan Heights ceasefire line in 1973, Israel and Iran exchanged fire in southwestern Syria unde…

  • Viewpoint
    EgyptConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Deploying Arab Forces in Syria is not Advisable, nor Possible

    May 10, 2018Radwan Ziadeh

    Over the last few months, President Donald Trump has made announcements that regional states should bear more of the burden of ridding Syria of the so-called I…

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    External Actors Complicate Resolving the Yemeni Conflict

    Although the Houthis and the Hadi government show no signs of compromise, Yemen’s conflict continues to drag on largely because external actors are pursuing ag…

  • Viewpoint
    LibyaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Haftar’s Illness and Libya’s Troubles

    Apr 20, 2018Imad K. Harb

    Libya’s confusing political environment just became a little more so with the reported illness of strongman General Khalifa Haftar. He is commander of the so-c…

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Kosovo Model for Syria

    Apr 17, 2018Radwan Ziadeh

    The April 13, 2018, American-British-French strike on Syria was wider in scope and effect than that of April 2017 on Shairat Air Base; both conducted as punish…

  • Policy Analysis
    SudanConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Egyptian-Sudanese Relations on the Mend, but Tensions Remain

    Egyptian-Sudanese relations are currently improving although the nature of their ties over the years remains prone to rapid change. Part of their problems are …

  • Viewpoint
    Conflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Forgotten Arab League

    Apr 11, 2018Joe Macaron

    On April 15, the summit of the League of Arab States will be convened in Dammam, Saudi Arabia. It will serve as a reminder that Arabs have a regional, albeit f…

  • Policy Analysis
    IraqConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    A Mysterious Strike Renews Israel-US Coordination in Syria

    Apr 10, 2018Joe Macaron

    The Israeli strike on Iranian assets in Syria last Monday and the imminent US strike on Syria renew the US-Israeli coordination there for the first time since …

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Super-Hawks on Iran May Make the US the Biggest Loser

    Apr 10, 2018Daniel Brumberg

    The super-hawks President Trump appointed in his administration may very well get the United States into a conflagration with Iran despite international satisf…

  • Policy Analysis
    QatarConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Doubts Surrounding Trump’s Work on GCC Reconciliation

    Apr 9, 2018Imad K. Harb

    Conditions in the Gulf and in Washington do not augur well for Trump-led successful negotiations to resolve the GCC crisis, although all players are making the…

  • Policy Analysis
    JordanConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Jordan’s Four Worst-case Scenarios on Its Syrian Border

    Mar 30, 2018Joe Macaron

    Jordan faces four worst-case scenarios as the US-Russia ceasefire agreement is gradually collapsing in southwestern Syria. Amman’s options to limit the damage …

  • Policy Analysis
    IraqConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Many Complications of Returning Islamic State Fighters

    Mar 19, 2018Mustafa Gurbuz

    As the Islamic State (IS) transforms into a flat organization with autonomous cells around the globe, the foreign fighters returning to their home countries po…

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Hell on Earth: The World Forsakes Syria’s Eastern Ghouta

    Feb 28, 2018Radwan Ziadeh

    The people of this district near Damascus are being exposed to relentless aerial bombing and ground attacks that have killed over 500 civilians, including many…

  • Policy Analysis
    QatarConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    US Allies Upstage Tillerson’s Mideast Tour

    Feb 27, 2018Joe Macaron

    Israel and Turkey dominated Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s first expanded high level trip to the Middle East as US foreign policy faces new regional challe…

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Eastern Ghouta: Syria’s “Hell on Earth”

    Feb 23, 2018Khalil E. Jahshan

    In recent weeks, the Assad regime and its supporters have subjected the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta to one of the most violent attacks of the seven-year …

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Abbas Reassures UNSC of Palestinian Commitment to Just and Lasting Peace

    Feb 20, 2018Khalil E. Jahshan

    Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas delivered today his long-anticipated speech to the UN Security Council. His objective was essentially two-fold, he wanted f…

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Mahmoud Abbas at the UN Security Council

    Feb 20, 2018Imad K. Harb

    What was most noticeable in Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s peace plan was his reaffirmation that the Arab Peace Initiative (API) of 2002 remai…

  • Policy Analysis
    LebanonConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Like Quicksand, Many Issues Threaten to Engulf Lebanon

    Feb 13, 2018Imad K. Harb

    As it approaches the highly anticipated round of legislative elections on May 6, Lebanon finds itself bereft of a cohesive political center that can withstand …

  • Policy Analysis
    IranConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Can Iran’s Minorities Be Used against the Regime?

    Feb 9, 2018Mustafa Gurbuz

    The heightened tension and antagonistic discourse between Saudi Arabia and Iran help Tehran legitimize its security policies in the country and to “alert” its …

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    A change in the American rules of engagement in Syria

    Feb 9, 2018Radwan Ziadeh

    The American forces in northeastern Syria intervened in the Deir Ezzor area to protect and defend their local ally, the Syrian Democratic Forces. An estimated …

  • Viewpoint
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Russia has abandoned all restraint in its support of Assad

    Feb 8, 2018Imad K. Harb

    It appears that Russia has decided to fully throw in its weight behind Bashar al-Assad’s regime and in fact take part in bombing civilian targets. I think Russ…

  • Policy Analysis
    Saudi ArabiaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Fits and Starts Characterize UN Mediation in Yemen, Syria, and Libya

    United Nations diplomacy regarding Yemen, Syria, and Libya may be undergoing a period of fatigue, or perhaps exhaustion, in searching for efficient formulas to…

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    An Unsettling Overview of the Middle East in 2018

    It is clear from ongoing developments in the Middle East that the United States and Russia will continue to play a role that meets their own national interests…

  • Policy Analysis
    JordanConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Palestinian Bet on the EU Could be an Opportunity for Washington

    Jan 25, 2018Joe Macaron

    The United States should remain engaged in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and President Abbas’ visit to Europe may have provided the Trump Administratio…

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Turkey’s Kurdish Conundrum in Syria

    Jan 24, 2018Mustafa Gurbuz

    As Turkey conducts its military operations against Syrian Kurdish militiamen ostensibly to secure its border with Syria, it finds itself needing to reconcile d…

  • Policy Analysis
    OmanConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Determinants of Oman’s Strategic Position on the Gulf Crisis

    Jan 23, 2018Imad K. Harb

    As Oman seeks to steer a neutral course in the ongoing GCC crisis, Omani decision-makers worry that what happened with Qatar may be justified against their own…

  • Policy Analysis
    EgyptConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Egyptian and Jordanian Relations with Israel under Strain

    Generally cordial and cooperative, Egyptian and Jordanian relations with Israel are currently strained following provocative actions by the U.S. and Israel on …

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    No Room for Assad in a Future Syria

    There is no end to Syria’s conflict, no establishment of a democratic and open political system, and no return for Syria’s refugees, so long as Bashar al-Assad…

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Using Its Syrian Foothold, Russia Expands in the Middle East

    Dec 14, 2017Charles W. Dunne

    Russia’s victory in Syria does not merely prop up the Assad regime but, more broadly, helps propel Moscow’s strategic interests in the wider Middle East.

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Arab Normalization with Israel Frames Trump Peace Plan

    Nov 22, 2017Yousef Munayyer

    President Trump’s peace plan in the Middle East embraces the “outside-in” approach for peace between Palestinians and Israelis with a risky Arab-Israeli normal…

  • Policy Analysis
    Saudi ArabiaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Trump Embraces the Saudi Vision of the Yemen Conflict

    President Trump has adopted the Saudi leadership’s position that the Yemen conflict is a case of Iranian and proxy adventurism that needs to be rolled back and…

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Closure of the PLO Office in Washington: The “Ultimate Deal” Exposed

    Now that the Palestinians are potentially losing their diplomatic foothold in Washington, they may finally decide that the United States is withdrawing from ne…

  • Policy Analysis
    IraqConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Iraq’s Disputed Territories: A Worrisome Achilles’ Heel

    Nov 13, 2017Mustafa Gurbuz

    Two major factors will help shape the future of Iraq’s disputed territories. One is the population dynamic, given the influx of internal refugees, and the othe…

  • Policy Analysis
    LevantConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Policy Recommendations for the Trump Administration

    Nov 9, 2017Sumaya al-Majdoub

    The last session of the second annual conference of Arab Center Washington DC, held on October 26, 2017, concentrated on policy recommendations for the future.…

  • Policy Analysis
    North AfricaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Emerging Security Challenges in North and West Africa

    The appearance of stability in the countries of north and west Africa belies a dangerous reality of the existence of many extremist groups feeding on poor soci…