by François Nicoullaud Paris, France—This is not the first time that we may have trapped ourselves when drafting UN Security Council (UNSC) resolutions that were intended to trap another country—in this case, Iran. The present situation recalls in some respects the period around 1997 when most Security Council members would have liked to rescind, or
by Marsha B. Cohen
One of the more remarkable aspects of the recent news coverage of Iraq — the Maliki government’s loss of control over the northern region of the country, the deadly confrontations taking place between Iraqi Shia and Sunnis, and the clashes between Kurds and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIL [...]
by Shireen T. Hunter
The beleaguered Prime Minister of Iraq, Nouri al-Maliki, is the latest in the long list of the West’s favorite political leaders turned into pariahs. The conventional wisdom now is that Maliki’s flaws and wrong policies, especially his alienation of the Sunnis and dictatorial style of governance, are at [...]
by Wayne White
The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) has stunned Baghdad by overrunning most of Iraq’s second largest city in the north, Mosul. Yet, the Sunni Arab extremist group – in its zeal for a quick victory — may have overplayed its hand, sharply increasing the possibility of other [...]
By Robert E. Hunter
The devil is in the details. This cliché is already being invoked regarding the deal concluded this past weekend between Iran and the so-called P5+1 – the permanent members of the UN Security Council, plus Germany, along with the European Union’s High Representative, Baroness Ashton.
Devil and details, [...]
by Thomas W. Lippman
Shortly after President Obama’s startling telephone conversation with Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani, a Saudi Arabian journalist wrote that “The phone call between Obama and Rouhani shocked the Gulf states, Jordan, Turkey, Israel, and other countries.” No matter which president initiated the call, he wrote, “What is important to know is what stands [...]
by Marsha B. Cohen
One of the more disconcerting developments in foreign policy discussions in the 21st century is that political satirists seem to be offering keener and more prescient assessments of the dilemmas involved than pundits and policy makers. Put somewhat less charitably, the cliches and conventions of foreign policy have [...]
by Mark N. Katz
“Obama weighing limited strike on Syria,” reads the main headline of an August 27 Washington Post article. We still don’t know exactly what this will entail, but as this piece — and many other news reports — indicate, the operative word definitely appears to be: limited.
As authors [...]
via Lobe Log
Considering the misleading claims made about non-existent Iraqi and Iranian nuclear weapons, and the ramifications of another costly and catastrophic war, there should be more analyses like Scott Peterson’s highlighting of lessons from the lead-up to the 2003 US invasion of Iraq.
A declassified January 2006 report published in [...]
via Lobe Log
Rolf Ekéus, who was executive chairman for the UN Special Commission on Iraq between 1991 and 1997, writes with Målfrid Braut-Hegghammer, a nuclear expert at Standford University, on the parallels between the run-up to the Iraq War and the present state of negotiations between Tehran and the international community.
Rolf and Braut-Heggehammer place the onus [...]
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