Middle East


Ready to Fight

Obama might be risk averse, but there are at least five scenarios in which he might use military force in the Middle East.

Aaron David Miller |


Throwing Windmills at the Wyndham

While the Syrian opposition brawls in an Istanbul hotel, the battlefield fighting is increasingly within the rebel camp.

Susannah George |

Slide Show

Iranian Mystique

Behind closed doors, the Islamic Republic's famously restrictive laws relax -- and a more permissive world thrives.

Hossein Fatemi |


You Win Some, You Lose Some

As moderate rebels beat back Islamist radicals in Syria, Assad gains.

Muhammad Ali |

In Box

Al Qaeda Core: A Short History

How the franchise operations of the world's most infamous terrorist organization became more potent than the mothership.

Ty McCormick |


The Missing Piece in Ensuring Afghanistan’s Peace

Much has gone right in Afghanistan. It’s more secure, stable, and even optimistic. But there's one final tweak needed before America says goodbye.

James Stavridis |


It's a Sabotage

Iran’s hard-liners are using mass executions to undermine the nuclear deal.

Ryan Costello |


Mahmoud Abbas and the 'Jewish State'

In refusing to recognize Israel as the “Jewish state,” the Palestinian leader is denying a fact that even Yasser Arafat was willing to admit.

Robert Satloff |


Is Israel About to Invade Gaza Again?

As rockets and threats fly fast and furious, a familiar tension builds in the Middle East.

Amos Harel |

In Box

The Slow Track to Happiness

Religion makes you poorer. It also makes you happier. If you think that's a contradiction, you're wrong.

Alicia P.Q. Wittmeyer |


A Ship Without a Rudder

The institutions of the Egyptian state are out of control -- and it is unclear if even Sisi can bring them to heel.

Michael Wahid Hanna |


The Frontman vs. al Qaeda

Meet Jamal Maarouf, the West's best fighting chance against Syria's Islamist armies.

Susannah George |


Red Sea Déjà Vu

Israel's seizure of an Iranian cargo ship carrying weapons this week should be a wake-up call. It's the same, old bad behavior.

Aaron David Miller |


How Qatar Lost the Middle East

The oil-rich emirate once was heralded as the Arab world's rising power. Now, its neighbors are pressuring it to take a back seat role.

Elizabeth Dickinson |


The Powerless Peacemaker

Don't count on Obama pressuring Bibi to make peace in the Middle East. He isn’t -- and he can’t.

Aaron David Miller |


Mission Impossible

With two-thirds of Iraq’s provinces in open conflict with the capital, Nouri al-Maliki is resorting to Saddam Hussein’s playbook to keep the country together.

Marina Ottaway |


Front to Back

The most powerful rebel alliance in Syria -- the Islamic Front -- is on the verge of collapse.

Hassan Hassan |


America Has a Plan. And, No, It Isn't One That Israel Would Like.

New poll shows that if the two-state solution collapses, U.S. public favors democracy over Jewishness.

Shibley Telhami |


Bibi Trapped

Why Israel's prime minister can't call the shots on Iran or the peace process.

Aaron David Miller |


These Aren’t the Terrorists You’re Looking For

Why does the Egyptian government insist on blaming the Muslim Brotherhood for every act of terrorism, even as a dangerous jihadist group claims the attacks as their own?

David Barnett |



African asylum-seekers are done keeping quiet about the Israeli government's failure to help them. But is anyone listening?

Camilla Schick |


Sisi's Gas Pains

Why energy, not terrorists, could be the Egyptian strongman's undoing

Keith Johnson |


This Debate Has Been Redacted

A new report details the awful civilian casualties inflicted by American drones, but the arguments over the weapons' use have begun to feel grimly familiar.

Sarah Knuckey |


You Can't Always Get What You Want

And four other rules out of the nuclear negotiator's playbook.

Aaron David Miller |


Why Egypt Hates Al Jazeera

The network's Cairo-based staff, who stand accused of running a terror cell from a luxury hotel, find themselves caught in the middle of a regional power struggle.

Gregg Carlstrom |


Is the United States Playing 'Small Ball'?

Obama is wrestling with Iran, Syria and Israel -- what happened to all the big stuff?

Stephen M. Walt |

Slide Show

'What News of the Village?'

Sometimes, the only news coming off the front lines of Syria's civil war is sent via text message.

Liam Maloney |


A Comprehensive Strategy Against Terrorism

Iraq is using all the political, economic, and military tools at its disposal in its effort to defeat al Qaeda.

Nouri al-Maliki |


Icebergs Ahead

The interim nuclear deal with Iran was huge -- but a permanent solution is going to be much, much harder to reach.

Thomas Omestad |