Middle East & North Africa

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In the News

Iran Used A Home-Grown Missile Platform To Shoot Down US Drone

quoting Amy Zegartvia Engineering.com
Thursday, June 27, 2019

The Iranian military knocked an expensive, state-of-the-art U.S. military drone out of the sky with a surface-to-air missile.

Featured AnalysisAnalysis and Commentary

Reconfiguring Geopolitics In The Era Of The Surveillance State: The Uyghurs, The Chinese Party-State, And The Reshaping Of Middle East Politics

by Kelly A. Hammond via The Caravan
Thursday, June 27, 2019

We are living in the era of the surveillance state. People are starting to understand the political implications that the connections between technology and state power may have on individual privacy and civil rights. As Artificial Intelligence (AI) and facial recognition technology become available to states around the world, they are faced with making a choice whether to use them to monitor their own populations. While San Francisco just became the first city in the United States to ban the use of AI for policing, authoritarian states, like the United Arab Emirates, regularly consult and buy software from Chinese tech firms to control and monitor their own populations.

Featured AnalysisAnalysis and Commentary

Strategic Geography Of The Middle East

by Tony Badranvia The Caravan
Thursday, June 27, 2019

With the end of the Cold War the United States lost a sound understanding of the strategic geography of the Middle East. Before the fall of the Soviet Union, US strategy focused, correctly, on historical power centers on the outer rim of the Levant and Mesopotamia. The land in between these power centers – Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Jordan – was the arena for proxy war and competition between great powers.

Featured

America Can Afford To Stay Calm With Iran

by Victor Davis Hansonvia American Greatness
Wednesday, June 26, 2019

President Trump recently ordered and then called off a retaliatory strike against Iran for destroying a U.S. surveillance drone. The U.S. asserts that the drone was operating in international space. Iran claims it was in Iranian airspace.

Featured

Is Economic Development The Key To Mideast Peace?

by Michael J. Boskinvia Project Syndicate
Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Now that the Trump administration has offered a blueprint for economic development and reform in the Palestinian territories, the opportunity costs of maintaining the status quo are clear for all to see. Although the Palestinians remain opposed to the plan, at least now they can start to consider the economic potential of peace.

Featured AnalysisAnalysis and Commentary

Foreign Interference Everywhere

by Reuel Marc Gerechtvia The Caravan
Tuesday, June 25, 2019

“Foreign interference” is a phrase often heard in the Middle East.   In the pre-modern era, Muslim dynasties continuously challenged each other.  The idea of “foreign” intrusion was, however, religiously defined:  there were Greek and Latin Christians in the west, Mongol Shamanists and Hindus to the east.  The recurring and intense wars between the Ottomans and the Safavids, where sultans and shahs attempted in their diplomatic correspondence to strip each other of legitimacy, were an intramural match, despite the Sunni–Shiite clash, where victory on the battlefield determined who owned what. 

Featured AnalysisAnalysis and Commentary

Foreign Influence & The Middle East

by Hafed Al-Ghwellvia The Caravan
Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Today, America finds itself in roughly the same waters that drowned British ambitions in the Middle East between 1946–1969. In less than two decades, Washington has vacillated from direct intervention to calls to “share the region,” which have now been supplanted by the “America First” diplomacy of bold declarations that favor smaller, “face-saving” compromises. 

In the News

What To Make Of US Cyber Activities In Iran

quoting Jamil Jaffervia Fifth Domain
Monday, June 24, 2019

After the Islamic Republic of Iran shot down an RQ-4 Global Hawk drone June 20, President Donald Trump opted against physical military strikes as retaliation. Instead, multiple news organizations reported the U.S. military quietly conducted cyber operations that targeted computer systems that control Iranian missiles launches and an intelligence organization associated with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps.

Interviews

Lanhee Chen On Week In Politics: ICE Raids, Escalation With Iran, Buttigieg’s Tense Town Hall And More

interview with Lanhee J. Chenvia Southern California Public Radio
Monday, June 24, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Lanhee Chen discusses immigration, Iran, Joe Biden's comments about working across the isle, and much more.

In the News

When Does The President Think He Can Go To War With Iran?

quoting Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Monday, June 24, 2019

For the past two months, the Middle East has teetered on the edge of war. Tensions over the U.S. “maximum pressure” campaign have led Iran to target maritime shipping in the Persian Gulf, launch rockets on U.S. diplomatic and military personnel in Iraq through proxies, and shoot down a U.S drone that may or may not have been operating in Iranian airspace.

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