Blog / International Security

Israel and Saudi Arabia – roadblocks to peace?

King Abdullah bin Abdul al-Saud. Photo Source: Cherie Thurlby via Wikimedia Commons.

During the negotiations with Iran over a deal on its nuclear program, Israel and Saudi Arabia have demonstrated that their inability to compromise is one of the greatest threats to peace in the Middle East. Israel and Saudi Arabia have been some of …

Blog / Middle East and North Africa

Why the Sochi Winter Olympics is triggering an ethno-nationalist identity in the Middle East

Photo Source: Geagea via Wikimedia Commons.

“Today, as the Sochi Olympics approaches, Circassians seem to be carrying their own torch”, writes Jordanian-Circassian Merissa Khurma. For many Circassians, the Russian winter Olympics 2014 in Sochi has brought up bitter memories and triggered a world-wide renewal of an old identity. “For most sports worldwide, this flame marks …

Blog / Middle East and North Africa

Band of Brothers? Jordan between the US and Syria

Master Sgt. Jerry Morrison, U.S. Air Force, via Wikimedia Commons.

“..We in it shall be remembered-we few, we happy few, we band of brothers. For he to-day that sheds his blood with me shall be my brother..” William Shakespeare, Henry V

Jordan: 2,300 US military troops and Jordanian forces have completed-week long military exercises in Jordan. …

Blog / Middle East and North Africa

A Savage War of Peace? Israel, Hezbollah and Syria

Last week, Lebanese Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah gave a speech in which he declared that Hezbollah was helping the Asad regime crush the popular uprising/civil war in Syria. He also suggested that Russian and Iran would intervene militarily, to help protect the Asad regime. It has long been suspected that Hezbollah soldiers were …

Blog / Middle East and North Africa

Rafsanjani for Supreme Leader?

2013 marks the year that Iranians will take to the polls and elect a new president, and it is uncertain who will win. However one thing is certain – Ahmadienjad is out. The Iranian constitution stipulates that a president can only serve two-terms in a row. The president is responsible for handling the …