Islamism and the International Order Working Group

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Iran On The Brink: Challenges And Opportunities For Washington

by Sanam Vakilvia Analysis
Tuesday, July 17, 2018

In this essay, Sanam Vakil assesses the four interconnected economic, regional, domestic, and nuclear deal challenges besetting Iran. These challenges have emerged due to renewed US pressure against Iran but also stem from Iran’s endemic factional tensions between pragmatists and conservatives and their ideological differences on how to best protect the Islamic Republic. Vakil also argues that the gravity of these challenges offers a unique opportunity to the Trump administration to move beyond its traditional containment policy toward a meaningful grand strategy to reduce US-Iranian tensions. 

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The Sorrows Of Egypt Revisited

by Samuel Tadrosvia Analysis
Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Does Egypt still have a place in the US grand strategy? For many pundits in Washington the answer is a resounding no. From every corner of the US foreign policy community frustration abounds with Egypt. If, however, the United States is ever capable of understanding its troublesome ally and salvaging what remains of the US–Egyptian alliance, it must tread carefully, following Fouad Ajami’s steps, and approach the Egypt of reality, and not that of imagination. It must take a voyage to “a jaded country,” as Ajami called it, and visit the land of sorrows.

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Russia And The World of Islam: Within And Without

by Robert Servicevia Analysis
Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Of all the world's great powers, Russia has the longest and most tangled experience of Islam at home and abroad. Muslims have led or taken part in revolts.  Chechnya is only the latest such rebellion against Russian rule. Tsars, commissars, and now presidents have had to contend with internal difficulties that are aggravated by external Islamic interference. They have also intervened actively in Muslim countries in the "near abroad" and in the Middle East. This makes for danger in world politics.

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Countering Islamism In The Middle East

by Dennis Rossvia Analysis
Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Countering Islamism requires several elements. First is defining the term and understanding that Islam is one of the world’s great faiths and that Islamism is not a religion but an ideology of power and control.  Second is recognizing that radical Islamists seek to use that ideology to gain control for a violent, exclusionary, and expansionary agenda.  Third is realizing that radical Islamists are both Sunni and Shia.  The Sunnis, in the case of the Islamic State, must be defeated and the idea must be discredited—and only other Sunnis can do that.

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Assad's Lethal Peace Deals

by Mohammed Alaa Ghanemvia Analysis
Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Ceasefires are often assumed to be a means to peace; but in Syria, the Assad regime has transformed them into a powerful weapon against civilians. This essay describes how Assad's forces have strategically deployed ceasefires to achieve two goals: (1) the starvation and displacement of urban areas, and (2) the massing of otherwise overstretched forces. Through a series of case studies, this essay also charts the evolution of Assad's ceasefires strategy, from the “local ceasefires” that took hold early in the conflict to the current “de-escalation zones.” The essay also highlights impacts on Iranian regional expansion and long-term population displacement and demographic re-engineering. 

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Strategy, Grand Strategy, And The Enduring War On Terror

by Hal Brandsvia Analysis
Tuesday, July 17, 2018

The United States has now been fighting a global war on terror (GWOT) for nearly two decades, but the threat posed by extremist groups remains. This essay seeks to reconcile the strategic requirement of prosecuting an aggressive campaign against the most dangerous extremist groups with the grand strategic constraints that the United States currently faces. 

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The United States In Northeastern Syria

by Fabrice Balanche via Analysis
Tuesday, July 17, 2018

The presence of the United States in northeastern Syria after the defeat of the Islamic State is justified in the context of the confrontation with Iran and Russia in the Middle East. However, by relying primarily on the YPG (People's Protection Units), an outshoot of the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party), Washington creates an existential threat to Ankara and pushes Turkey into the arms of enemies of the United States. The inversion of local power to the benefit of the Kurds and the disastrous economic situation strikes the Arab populations, who are turning to Damascus. That calls into question all the calculations made by strategists who are not interested in the deep reality of the territory that must support their actions.

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The Question Of American Strategy In The Indo-Pacific

by Michael R. Auslinvia Analysis
Tuesday, July 17, 2018

For much of its history, America had little formal strategy for the Pacific. Only with the rise of China and the vital economic role of Asia can one envision a US grand strategy with the Indo-Pacific region at its core. Yet just when Asia has become central to US global strategy, Washington’s influence and power in the region have been significantly challenged. US policy makers must formulate an effective and comprehensive strategy toward Asia that preserves stability and protects American and allied interests while managing a growing strategic competition between Washington and Beijing and the threat of a nuclear-capable North Korea. 

Featured AnalysisAnalysis and Commentary

Bin Salman And The Promise (Or Peril) Of Reform

by Nadav Saminvia The Caravan
Tuesday, June 19, 2018

A mass drugging is how one young Saudi man in Riyadh described to me Mohammad Bin Salman’s Vision 2030, eight months after its ostentatious launch in April 2016.  Smoke and mirrors, he meant.  Since then, the energetic and youthful Saudi crown prince has surprised his critics by upending a number of his country’s political, economic, and cultural norms.  But can he safely deliver more change to an already rapidly changing society?  How much tinkering can one do with a fragile polity before it cracks under the pressure?

Featured AnalysisAnalysis and Commentary

Saudi Arabia’s Reforms And The United States

by Bernard Haykelvia The Caravan
Tuesday, June 19, 2018

The reign of King Salman of Saudi Arabia (since January 2015) represents a significant watershed in the history of the kingdom’s system of governance as well as in its domestic and foreign policies. These changes reflect the priorities of the king, who is an absolute monarch. The first, and most important, of these is the handing over of de facto rule to a prince of the younger generation: the king’s 32-year-old son and Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman (known in the West by his acronym MBS), who will become the reigning monarch upon his father’s passing.

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The Caravan


Visit the Caravan, a periodic symposium on the contemporary dilemmas of the greater Middle East.

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Elections in the Middle East

Tuesday, July 10, 2018
Hoover Institution, Washington DC

The Hoover Institution hosted "Elections in the Middle East" on Tuesday, July 10, 2018 from 12:15pm - 1:30pm EST. 

Event
In the News

Realism And Democracy: American Foreign Policy After The Arab Spring

Monday, November 6, 2017
Hoover Institution, Washington DC

The Hoover Institution hosted "Realism and Democracy: American Foreign Policy after the Arab Spring" on Monday, November 6, 2017 from 5:00pm - 7:00pm EST.

Event
In the News

Israel Facing A New Middle East: In Search Of A National Security Strategy

Monday, July 17, 2017
Hoover Institution, Washington DC

The Hoover Institution hosted "Israel Facing a New Middle East: In Search of a National Security Strategy" on Monday, July 17, 2017 from 12:00pm - 2:00pm EST.

Event
In the News

White Helmets Discussion: Humanitarian Efforts In Syria

Thursday, April 27, 2017
Hoover Institution, Washington DC

The Hoover Institution hosted a discussion with the White Helmets on their humanitarian efforts in Syria on Thursday, April 27, 2017 from 5:00pm - 7:00pm EST.

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In This Arab Time, by Ajami
Analysis and Commentary

In In This Arab Time, Ajami marries historical analysis and personal perspective to inform thinking on current Middle East struggle

Thursday, November 13, 2014
Stanford

The Hoover Institution Press today released In This Arab Time, by the late Fouad Ajami, Hoover Institution senior fellow. In this collection of thought-provoking essays, Ajami  brings into focus the current struggles of the Middle East through detailed historical analysis and a personal perspective immersed in the literature of the time and place.

Press Releases
Iraq after America: Strongmen, Sectarians, Resistance

In Iraq After America, Rayburn Focuses on Why Iraq Is Too Important to Disregard

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Hoover Institution Press today released Iraq after America by Colonel Joel Rayburn, a contributor to the Hoover Institution’s Working Group on Islamism and the International Order.

Press Releases
The Caravan: Obama’s Second Term – Middle Eastern Memos.

Hoover Caravan traverses postelection landscape in the Middle East

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Hoover Caravan is a product of the Herbert and Jane Dwight Working Group on Islamism and the International Order, cochaired by Hoover fellows Charles Hill and Fouad Ajami, with the active participation of John Raisian, the Tad and Dianne Taube Director of the Hoover Institution. Participants gather in a round-table discussion format to discuss various topics and ideas. The contributors write 750-word essays and columns that can be seen on Advancing a Free Society: The Caravan.

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Hoover Institution Releases Book Examining the Future of Turkish Identity Torn Country: Turkey between Secularism and Islamism By Zeyno Baran

Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Stanford

Hoover Institution Press today released Torn Country: Turkey between Secularism and Islamism, by Zeyno Baran. In Torn Country, she examines the intense struggle between Turkey’s secularists and Islamists in their recent battle to define Turkish identity.

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What is going on with Turkey?

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Zeyno Baran is a contributor to the Herbert and Jane Dwight Working Group on Islamism and the International Order, the director of the Hudson Institute's Center for Eurasian Policy, and a senior fellow at the Hudson's Center on Islam, Democracy and the Future of the Muslim World. In her latest book, Torn Country: Turkey between Secularism and Islamism, she examines the intense struggle between Turkey’s secularists and Islamists in their most recent battles over their country’s destination.

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Freedom or Terror: Europe Faces Jihad, by Hoover senior fellow Russell A. Berman.

Freedom or Terror: Europe Faces Jihad by Senior Fellow Russell A. Berman

Thursday, May 13, 2010
Stanford

Hoover Institution Press today announced the publication of Freedom or Terror: Europe Faces Jihad, by Hoover senior fellow Russell A. Berman. In his analysis of Europe’s ambivalence toward jihadist terror and the spread of aggressive Islamism, Berman focuses on the European responses—or lack thereof—to this profound threat to modern democracy.

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The Working Group on Islamism and the International Order seeks to engage in the task of reversing Islamic radicalism through reforming and strengthening the legitimate role of the state across the entire Muslim world.

Efforts will draw on the intellectual resources of an array of scholars and practitioners from within the United States and abroad, to foster the pursuit of modernity, human flourishing, and the rule of law and reason in Islamic lands–developments that are critical to the very order of the international system. The working group is chaired by Hoover fellows Russell Berman and Charles Hill.

Visit The Caravan, a periodic symposium on the contemporary dilemmas of the greater Middle East.