• Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelRegional Relations and Geopolitics

    Middle East Leaders Contend with Strains in an Evolving Regional Entente

    May 13, 2022Daniel Brumberg

    In its unfolding bid to expand ties with Middle East governments, Israel must grapple with a basic challenge: how to ensure that events in the Palestinian-Isra…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    Israel and the US Visa Waiver Program: Not a Done Deal

    May 12, 2022Yousef Munayyer

    Israel has long sought entry into the United States Visa Waiver Program (VWP) with limited success, despite years of efforts and the close strategic and bilate…

  • Policy Analysis
    The War in Ukraine

    The Water’s Edge: Ukraine, the United States, and the Middle East

    Mar 30, 2022Charles W. Dunne

    “Politics must stop at the water’s edge,” Republican Senator Arthur Vandenberg famously asserted in1947, as he helped Democratic President Harry S. Truman lay …

  • Policy Analysis
    YemenUS Foreign Policy

    Yemen: The Failure of International Diplomacy

    Mar 3, 2022Nabeel Khoury

    The latest escalation in Yemen, particularly the cross-border rocket fire by the Ansar Allah militia (the Houthis) and the retaliatory aerial bombardment by th…

  • Policy Analysis
    QatarUS Foreign Policy

    Qatar’s New Designation as US Non-NATO Ally Serves Multiple Purposes

    Feb 4, 2022Imad K. Harb

    Less than five years after the eruption of the Gulf crisis of June 2017 that seriously threatened Qatar’s security, President Joe Biden designated the Gulf Ara…

  • Policy Analysis
    US Foreign Policy

    Biden’s Non-Doctrine in the Middle East: One Year On

    Jan 27, 2022Daniel Brumberg

    To understand the actual forces shaping US foreign policy, it is imperative to put aside the alluring but misleading notion that a “doctrine” provides a useful…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Abbas-Gantz Encounter: Much Ado about Nothing in the Middle East

    Jan 18, 2022Khalil E. Jahshan

    On December 28, 2021, a surprising development took place in the Middle East: Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas held a rare meeting in Israel,…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranRegional Relations and Geopolitics

    Ukraine’s Geostrategic Tremors Reach into the Middle East

    Jan 13, 2022Daniel Brumberg

    Daniel Brumberg disentangles the complications arising from the current tensions between Ukraine and Russia and their impact on US-Russian relations as well as…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    Biden and the Israeli Settlement Elephant in the Room

    Jan 5, 2022Yousef Munayyer

    One of Barack Obama’s first acts as president was to create the position of envoy for “Middle East peace.” George Mitchell, whom the president named for this p…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    US-Palestinian Economic Talks Serve Israeli Interests

    Dec 29, 2021Jonathan Kuttab

    The recent resumption of discussions about economic ties between the US government and the Palestinian Authority (PA) after a five-year hiatus must be understo…

  • Policy Analysis
    YemenUS Foreign Policy

    Houthi Intransigence Is Changing the US View of the Conflict in Yemen

    A combination of offensive military actions by the Houthi rebels and stalled peace talks to try to end the civil war in Yemen have changed the way the United S…

  • Policy Analysis
    Democracy and Governance

    Biden’s Summit for Democracy Ignored the Middle East

    Dec 15, 2021Charles W. Dunne

    The Biden Administration’s recent Summit for Democracy should be regarded as a modest success, fulfilling a campaign promise by President Joe Biden and decisiv…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranUS Foreign Policy

    High Stakes at the Vienna Nuclear Talks with Iran

    Dec 8, 2021Daniel Brumberg

    The ongoing indirect US-Iran negotiations in Vienna on the future of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) have thus far made little progress. Already…

  • Viewpoint
    Democracy and Governance

    Is Biden Serious about His Summit for Democracy?

    Since his inauguration on January 20, 2021, President Joe Biden has been hinting at a renewed focus on democracy by his administration to reverse the dismal re…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    Thomas-Greenfield’s Visit to Israel and Palestine: A Stark Asymmetry

    Dec 3, 2021Daoud Kuttab

    The Biden Administration’s ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, visited Israel, the city of Ramallah in the West Bank, and Jordan in mid-…

  • Policy Analysis
    EgyptUS Foreign Policy

    Agreements and Tensions in US-Egyptian Relations

    Dec 2, 2021Sahar Khamis

    The US-Egypt strategic dialogue was held in Washington, DC in early November between Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and his American counterpart, Secre…

  • Policy Analysis
    SudanUS Foreign Policy

    Biden’s Chameleon-like Policy in the MENA Region

    Nov 3, 2021Imad K. Harb

    Having invested time, effort, and treasure in helping to sustain the 2019 political agreement between the Sudanese military and the civilian Forces of Freedom …

  • Policy Analysis
    Justice, Equality, and Human Rights

    A “Crisis of Relevance”: UN Failures in the MENA Region

    Oct 5, 2021Yara M. Asi

    On September 21, 2021, in front of the same green marble tile where many of his predecessors and other prominent world leaders have spoken, US President Joe Bi…

  • Policy Analysis
    YemenUS Foreign Policy

    Biden’s Yemen Conundrum

    Oct 5, 2021Nabeel Khoury

    US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan traveled to Riyadh on September 27 and was accompanied by US Special Envoy for Yemen Tim Lenderking. The visit highl…

  • Policy Analysis
    SyriaConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Southwestern Syria Tests US-Russia Cooperation

    Sep 22, 2021Joe Macaron

    The US-Russian agreement of July 2017 that led to a fragile stability in southwestern Syria has recently unraveled, testing President Joe Biden’s approach in S…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    US-Israel Relations: Time for a Reset or Reevaluation?

    Sep 8, 2021Yousef Munayyer

    As Israel’s prime minister for nearly 12 years in a row, Benjamin Netanyahu greatly shaped the US-Israel relationship in recent history. After his exit from th…

  • Policy Analysis
    US Foreign Policy

    Humanitarian Lessons from a Century of Conflict in the Middle East

    Aug 26, 2021Yara M. Asi

    For most of the past 20 years, the heavy presence of American and coalition forces in Afghanistan remained in the backdrop of public discourse. While some poli…

  • Policy Analysis
    LebanonEnergy and Economics

    Lebanon’s Energy Crisis Fuels US-Iran Tensions

    Aug 25, 2021Joe Macaron

    In the midst of an economic collapse and an energy crisis, Lebanon has found itself in a tug of war between the United States and Iran. On August 19, Hezbollah…

  • Viewpoint
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfSecurity and Defense

    After Afghanistan, a New Biden Middle East Doctrine Takes Shape

    Aug 19, 2021Imad K. Harb

    If there are lessons to be learned from the disastrous end of the American war in Afghanistan, they would be most applicable to the countries of the Arab Middl…

  • Viewpoint
    US Foreign Policy

    A Tale of Two Donalds: Rumsfeld and Trump

    Jul 28, 2021Laurie King

    In late June, a long forgotten name popped up in news broadcasts: former US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld had died at the age of 88 after enjoying a cha…

  • Viewpoint
    SyriaUS Foreign Policy

    Rearranging American Priorities in Syria

    Jul 27, 2021Radwan Ziadeh

    On July 17, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad took his oath of office in front of parliament after winning the presidential election with 95 percent of the popu…

  • Policy Analysis
    JordanRegional Relations and Geopolitics

    King Abdullah’s Visit: Resetting American-Jordanian Relations

    Jul 22, 2021Curtis Ryan

    On July 19, 2021, King Abdullah II of Jordan became the first Arab leader to visit President Joe Biden at the White House. The symbolism alone was significant,…

  • Policy Analysis
    JordanUS Foreign Policy

    King Abdullah Visits Washington amid Jordan’s Woes

    King Abdullah II’s upcoming meetings with President Joe Biden on July 19, and subsequently with leading members of Congress, come at a time when the Hashemite …

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    Misunderstanding Evangelicals and Israel

    Jul 14, 2021Gary M. Burge 

    The dramatic shift in Israel’s leadership this summer, following former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s departure, gave pause to many American evangelicals…

  • Viewpoint
    Palestine/IsraelArab Americans/ Muslim Americans

    The Changing Arab American Activism for Palestine in the United States

    Jul 12, 2021Hani J. Bawardi

    Advocacy for Palestine in the United States has entered a new phase, given the higher level of veracity social media injected into coverage of the latest Israe…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelRegional Relations and Geopolitics

    Moroccan Normalization with Israel: Temporary Deal or Permanent Peace?

    Jul 8, 2021Khalil Al-Anani

    On June 16, 2021, King Mohammed VI of Morocco sent a congratulatory letter to Israel’s new prime minister, Naftali Bennett. This might not have been surprising…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranUS Foreign Policy

    Raisi’s Election Creates Opportunities and Pitfalls for Iran’s Islamic Republic

    Jun 25, 2021Daniel Brumberg

    In the weeks leading up to Iran’s June 18 presidential elections, one joke making the rounds was that Ebrahim Raisi, then a candidate and now the winner, was r…

  • Policy Analysis
    Regional Relations and Geopolitics

    US-Russian Cooperation in the Middle East after the Biden-Putin Summit

    Jun 24, 2021Joe Macaron

    The June 16 summit between President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, was meant to defuse tensions between the United States and Russia, …

  • Policy Analysis
    YemenUS Foreign Policy

    Attaining the Difficult Peace in Yemen

    After displaying some optimism about reaching a cease-fire and peace deal in Yemen, the Biden Administration is facing the stark reality that these objectives …

  • Policy Analysis
    Saudi ArabiaUS Foreign Policy

    A Tough Nut to Crack: Rebalancing the US-Saudi Relationship

    Jun 2, 2021Charles W. Dunne

    Out on the campaign trail in 2019, presidential candidate Joe Biden made it clear that when it came to a principled US foreign policy, he intended to be the an…

  • Viewpoint
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    What the United States Needs to Do Now for Calm in Israel and Palestine

    Jun 2, 2021Daoud Kuttab

    For decades, one of Israel’s goals was to cut off the Gaza Strip from the West Bank. It was not just the usual colonial tactic of divide and rule but a strateg…

  • Policy Analysis
    SyriaDemocracy and Governance

    Syria’s Presidential Election and the Absence of the American Role

    Jun 1, 2021Radwan Ziadeh

    On May 26, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad won a fourth seven-year term in a practically uncontested election. No one was surprised by the original announceme…

  • Policy Analysis
    SyriaUS Foreign Policy

    The Biden Administration and the GCC Rapprochement with Damascus

    May 27, 2021Joe Macaron

    With Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on his way to a fourth term in the Syrian presidential election held this week, Moscow is expected to resume its diplomat…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    The Sheikh Jarrah Intifada: Vital Lessons for President Biden

    The recent Palestinian intifada instigated in early May by a series of local clashes between Israeli Jewish settlers and Palestinian activists over the anticip…

  • Viewpoint
    Palestine/IsraelConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    The Israel-Hamas Cease-fire: Déjà vu All Over Again

    May 25, 2021Laurie King

    May is always a difficult month for Palestinians. Mid-month marks Nakba Day, the annual commemoration of the start of the Palestinian catastrophe of 1948. Over…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelJustice, Equality, and Human Rights

    The Time Has Come for an American Change on Israel

    May 20, 2021Imad K. Harb

    President Joe Biden has finally uttered the magic word of cease-fire in a telephone call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as they discussed the o…

  • Policy Analysis
    Women & Gender Issues

    Gender and US Foreign Policy in the Middle East

    May 19, 2021Andrea Sakleh

    On November 17, 2001, then First Lady Laura Bush gave a radio address to the nation that lamented Afghan women as victims of an oppressive terrorist regime. Sh…

  • Policy Analysis
    TurkeyUS Foreign Policy

    The Path to Armenian Genocide Recognition: A Lesson for Palestine Activists?

    The century-old struggle by the Armenian American community for US recognition that the large-scale massacres and deportations of their people in the Ottoman E…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranUS Foreign Policy

    The Israeli Factor in the US-Iran Nuclear Talks

    May 6, 2021Joe Macaron

    As US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin was visiting Israel on April 11, Israel’s Mossad intelligence agency orchestrated a mysterious explosion in Iran’s Natanz …

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfUS Foreign Policy

    The United States Ends its Combat Role in Iraq

    At the recent meeting of the US-Iraq Strategic Dialogue, negotiators decided to end the combat mission of US troops engaged in the fight against remnants of th…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    Will the Natanz Incident Produce Maximum Diplomacy?

    Apr 23, 2021Daniel Brumberg

    Just two days after what appeared to be an Israeli-backed sabotage of Iran’s Natanz enrichment facilities, The Washington Post’s editorial board declared that …

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfUS Foreign Policy

    Yemen’s Critical Moment

    Apr 21, 2021Nabeel A. Khoury

    Tim Lenderking, the American special envoy for Yemen, recently attended a meeting in Germany with representatives of the five permanent members of the United N…

  • Policy Analysis
    Qalandiya checkpoint in the West Bank
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    Biden’s Apparent Failure on Israel-Palestine

    Apr 13, 2021Imad K. Harb

    President Joe Biden’s 100-day milestone is approaching with pronounced successes in fighting the coronavirus pandemic, righting the ship of the American econom…

  • Policy Analysis
    YemenConflicts and Conflict Resolution

    Time to Rethink International Intervention in Yemen

    Apr 7, 2021Nadwa Al-Dawsari

    Ten years ago, youth-led peaceful protests spread in Yemen demanding political reforms and the removal of the corrupt regime of former President Ali Abdullah S…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    Congressional Advocacy for Palestinian Rights in the Post-Trump Era

    Apr 2, 2021Yousef Munayyer

    For nearly 15 years, a partisan divide around the US-Israel relationship has been exacerbated in American politics. It became clear and consistent during the O…

  • Policy Analysis
    JordanUS Foreign Policy

    Jordan’s Monarchy Reclaims Regional Role under Biden

    Mar 25, 2021Joe Macaron

    To describe the last four years as challenging ones for US-Jordanian relations would be an understatement. President Donald Trump’s absolute support for Israel…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranUS Foreign Policy

    Hard-liners Fight for Iran’s Presidency and Foreign Policy

    Mar 17, 2021Daniel Brumberg

    Former US Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, who during the Obama Administration played a pivotal role in negotiating the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, recently asserted…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    The Biden Administration and the Palestinians: Early Policy Indications

    Mar 9, 2021Yousef Munayyer

    The new administration in Washington, about half way through its first 100 days in office, is shaping its foreign policy. President Joe Biden and his team have…

  • Policy Analysis
    Saudi ArabiaUS Foreign Policy

    Repercussions of the ODNI Khashoggi Report: An Assessment

    Mar 3, 2021Khalil E. Jahshan Imad K. Harb Kristian Coates Ulrichsen Sarah Leah Whitson Rosie Bsheer

    On February 26, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) released its report on the assassination of US resident and Washington Post columnis…

  • Viewpoint
    Saudi ArabiaUS Foreign Policy

    Mohammed bin Salman in the Hot Seat

    Feb 26, 2021Imad K. Harb

    The Biden Administration’s release on February 26 of a declassified intelligence report implicating Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MbS) in the assassi…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranUS Foreign Policy

    The US and Iran: From Brinkmanship to Negotiations?

    Feb 25, 2021Daniel Brumberg

    In his far-ranging February 21 interview with Iran’s Press TV, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif reiterated a bottom line: that Iran would step awa…

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfUS Foreign Policy

    The Biden Administration Contemplates a New Pivot to Asia

    Feb 23, 2021Charles W. Dunne

    Is the pivot to Asia for real this time?That is one of the key questions Washington policy analysts, pundits, and diplomats are asking themselves as President …

  • Policy Analysis
    US Foreign Policy

    The Limits of US-French Coordination in the Middle East

    Feb 17, 2021Joe Macaron

    Joe Macaron explores the current state of American-French relations regarding the Middle East at the start of the Biden Administration. He lists three main rea…

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfUS Foreign Policy

    Biden will Contend with Divergent Middle East Preferences on Iran

    Jan 27, 2021Daniel Brumberg

    The Middle East is experiencing a period of diplomatic and strategic readjustment that will create both challenges and opportunities for the Biden Administrati…

  • Policy Analysis
    IranUS Foreign Policy

    Iran between Avenging Soleimani and Engaging Biden

    Jan 27, 2021Joe Macaron

    Two events in January serve as reminders of how US-Iran dynamics are pulled in two different directions: the inauguration of President Joe Biden on January 20,…

  • Policy Analysis
    YemenUS Foreign Policy

    Pompeo’s Departing Sabotage in Yemen

    Jan 19, 2021Imad K. Harb

    With less than two weeks in office before he checks out of Foggy Bottom, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo designated Yemen’s Houthi movement a foreign terrorist …

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfUS Foreign Policy

    China’s Belt and Road Initiative and US Middle East Policy

    Jan 13, 2021Charles W. Dunne

    More than seven years after Chinese President Xi Jinping announced his country’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the vast infrastructure and economic developme…

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfUS Foreign Policy

    The Biden Administration’s Foreign Policy: Key Features and Likely Changes

    Jan 6, 2021Unit for Political Studies

    Having won the American presidential election, and despite incumbent President Donald Trump’s refusal to concede, Democratic candidate and President-elect Joe …

  • Viewpoint
    MoroccoJustice, Equality, and Human Rights

    Morocco’s Unmissed Opportunity in the Western Sahara

    Dec 21, 2020Mohamed Daadaoui

    In a final act by his administration, President Donald Trump announced that Morocco and Israel will normalize relations, making the kingdom the fourth Arab cou…

  • Policy Analysis
    US Foreign Policy

    The Limits of American Multilateral Diplomacy in the Middle East

    Dec 21, 2020Daniel Brumberg

    Perhaps the hardest among the many challenges that the new Biden Administration will face is renewing the spirit and practice of multilateral diplomacy in regi…

  • Policy Analysis
    US Foreign Policy

    The Biden Administration and US Foreign Policy Decision-Making

    Dec 15, 2020Joe Macaron

    President-elect Joe Biden’s incoming administration will have a lasting impact on the American foreign policy decision-making process, most notably when it com…

  • Policy Analysis
    SudanUS Foreign Policy

    The Biden Presidency Could Help Democratic Transition in Sudan

    Dec 15, 2020Abdelkhalig Shaib

    When former Vice President Joe Biden won the election following four tumultuous years under President Donald Trump, the Sudanese government and people had a qu…

  • Policy Analysis
    MoroccoUS Foreign Policy

    Morocco, Too, Signs on to Trump’s Lawlessness

    Dec 11, 2020Imad K. Harb

    Morocco became the fourth Arab country to normalize relations with Israel without linking the move to progress regarding Palestine. In fact, the agreement had …

  • Policy Analysis
    TurkeyUS Foreign Policy

    What Awaits US-Turkey Relations in the Biden Era?

    Dec 9, 2020Mustafa Gurbuz

    A few weeks before the November elections, a video clip of then-presidential candidate Joe Biden went viral in Turkey and caused a stir inside the Turkish gove…

  • Policy Analysis
    JordanUS Foreign Policy

    Will Biden Help to Restore Jordan’s Position in the Middle East?

    Dec 8, 2020Curtis Ryan

    Jordan’s relations with the United States are almost as old as the kingdom itself, with the country enjoying a generally strengthening relationship over the ye…

  • Policy Analysis
    SyriaUS Foreign Policy

    Biden Has a New Opportunity in Syria

    Dec 7, 2020Radwan Ziadeh

    The exceptional nature of the 2020 American presidential election, held in the shadow of the coronavirus pandemic that has so far killed over a quarter million…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    Biden and Correcting the Course of Relations with Palestine

    Dec 4, 2020Zaha Hassan

    Palestinians let out a collective sigh of relief following confirmation that former Vice President Joe Biden won the US presidential election. Though the Pales…

  • Policy Analysis
    Palestine/IsraelUS Foreign Policy

    Biden and Israel: The Constraints Are Plentiful

    Dec 4, 2020Yousef Munayyer

    As inauguration nears and President-elect Joe Biden assembles his cabinet and broader domestic and foreign policy teams, they collectively stare at four years …

  • Policy Analysis
    North AfricaUS Foreign Policy

    The Complications Confronting Biden in Northwest Africa

    Dec 2, 2020Imad K. Harb

    Following four years of American disarray and the absence of an effective foreign policy, the Joe Biden presidency faces both serious challenges in dealing wit…

  • Policy Analysis
    LibyaUS Foreign Policy

    Biden’s Challenges in Stabilizing Libya

    Dec 2, 2020Karim Mezran Emadeddin Badi

    Upon assuming power, President Joe Biden and his administration will face a still-chaotic Libya despite the many political maneuverings afoot among Libyans and…

  • Policy Analysis
    EgyptUS Foreign Policy

    The Biden Administration and Egypt: A New Course or Business as Usual?

    Dec 1, 2020Khalil Al-Anani

    Since the announcement of Joe Biden’s victory in the US election, a state of anxiety and unease has gripped Egypt. President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi will now lose…

  • Policy Analysis
    TunisiaUS Foreign Policy

    What Can Tunisia Expect from a Biden Administration?

    Dec 1, 2020Sarah Yerkes

    Like most of its North African neighbors, Tunisia saw little attention from the Trump Administration, compared to other parts of the Middle East such as Egypt,…

  • Policy Analysis
    US Foreign Policy

    Democracy and Human Rights in the Middle East: The Biden Agenda

    Nov 25, 2020Charles W. Dunne

    As news that former Vice President Joe Biden had won the American presidential election began to circulate on Saturday, November 7, messages of congratulations…

  • Policy Analysis
    The Arabian Peninsula and The GulfThe GCC

    The Biden Presidency and the Gulf Arab States

    Assessing the Biden Administration’s future relations with the Gulf, Kristian Coates Ulrichsen writes that it faces a set of difficult challenges on a number o…

  • Policy Analysis
    YemenUS Foreign Policy

    Yemen May Be a Priority for Biden and the Democrats

    As President-elect Joe Biden assembles his team and sets his priorities for the next four years, there has been much speculation as to what he will focus on in…