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Middle East

Why Saudis Derailed Imminent Yemen Deal with Airstrikes
Wall Street Journal UN correspondent Joe Lauria discusses how a former UN envoy came forward with details of a power-sharing deal in Yemen and why Saudi Arabia would want to prevent that deal from becoming a reality.

  April 28, 2015

Houthi Arms Came from Saleh, not Iran
Gareth Porter says the claim that Iran is supplying Houthis with weapons ignores that the group was flush with American arms from ex-president Saleh

  April 25, 2015

Ratner Report: The Palestine Exception to the First Amendment
Any criticism of Israel and push for BDS is considered anti-Semitic - such extreme reactions are an indication of the success of the campaign. The most recent Stanford University case is another example of that success.

  April 27, 2015

My Reports on 1995 Human Rights Abuses in Bahrain Ignored by State Department - John Kiriakou on Reality Asserts Itself (3/8)
On Reality Asserts Itself, Mr. Kiriakou tells Paul Jay that from Iraq to Bahrain, it was becoming clear to him that commercial interest, particularly arms sales, was driving U.S. policy in the Middle East

  April 23, 15

Pentagon Declares Airstrikes against ISIS a Success in Iraq
Patrick Cockburn, a journalist for The Independent who just returned from Iraq, says that might be an exaggeration

  April 16, 2015

Iraqi Prime Minister Seeking More Funding to Fight ISIS
Journalist Reese Erlich says the U.S. bombing campaign doesn't have a major impact in Syria because it has no allies on the ground other than the Kurdish Peshmerga

  April 20, 2015

Proxy Morons: The Demolition of Yemen (3/3)
Daniel Martin Varisco: What went wrong in Yemen is what usually goes wrong when you have a history of colonialism, ongoing interference from outside forces, sectarian blindness, and massive wealth at the service of mischief

  April 13, 2015

Proxy Morons: The Demolition of Yemen (2/3)
Daniel Martin Varisco: What went wrong in Yemen is what usually goes wrong when you have a history of colonialism, ongoing interference from outside forces, sectarian blindness, and massive wealth at the service of mischief

  April 12, 2015

Oil, Iran and Palestine - What's at Stake for Saudi Arabia (3/3)
Madawi al-Rasheed tells Paul Jay that since the Arab uprising in 2011, we don't hear the Saudis talking about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict; it has identified its enemy first as Iran

  April 6, 2015

ISIS and What's at Stake for Saudi Arabia? (2/3)
Madawi Al-Rasheed says the Saudis contend with ISIS to be the leaders of the Sunni world, but their interests converge as both regard Iran and the Shia as their enemy

  April 5, 2015

Yemen Rebels Take Presidential Palace, What's At Stake for Saudi Arabia? (1/3)
Madawi Al-Rasheed says the Saudis want to prove their military prowess as defenders of Sunni Muslims and to install a pro-Saudi government in Yemen

  April 2, 2015

Proxy Morons: The Demolition of Yemen (1/3)
Daniel Varisco, President of the American Institute for Yemeni Studies, talks about the days events and who the players are in Yemen

  April 4, 2015

Operation Decisive Storm in Yemen May Not Be So Decisive
Patrick Cockburn says wars in Yemen, Syria, Iraq and Libya are escalating, intensifying and cross-infecting each other, and the contradictory positions the US faces gives the IS an advantage

  April 1, 2015

The Significance of Retaking Tikrit by the Iraqi Government
Patrick Cockburn, author of The Rise of the Islamic State, has just returned from northern Iraq, where he says that even if the government has retaken Tikrit, it is a small victory that signals a long war ahead

  April 6, 2015

Arms Sales Fuel Middle East Conflicts
William Hartung says Saudi Arabia has become the second leading arms importer in the world

  April 1, 2015

Strategy of Using Gulf Monarchies to Project US Power in Mideast is Unraveling
Glen Ford says US-backed Saudi-led air attacks on the Houthis, who are dedicated fighters against al-Qaeda, are making al-Qaeda the real winners in this war

  April 1, 2015

How Yemen Became the Latest Iranian-Saudi Arabian Proxy War
Yemeni media researcher Walid Al-Saqaf discusses the Saudi and Iranian interests in Yemen and the dangers of labeling this conflict as a sectarian feud

  March 28, 2015

Saudi Arabia Attacks Yemen, Targeting Houthis
Yemeni Houthi movement has more to do with the internal conflict within Yemen and less to do with the projected Shia-Sunni rivalry in the region, says Bilal Ahmed, graduate student at SOAS, University of London

  March 27, 2015

Turmoil in Libya Strengthening Extremism in Tunisia
Mohamed-Salah Omri analyzes the attacks in Tunis and why an estimated 3,000 young people fled Tunisia to join the IS

  March 19, 2015

Netanyahu Victory Lays Bare Israel as Racist, Colonial State
Analyst Shir Hever: Despite Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu's right-wing, neoliberal, and racist policies, his reelection thwarted a potentially more aggressive and violent regime from taking power

  March 19, 2015

Phyllis Bennis: Netanyahu or Herzog, Little Will Change in Israeli Policy
While there is a difference in rhetoric between the two leaders, there's not much Netanyahu can do to block a U.S. deal with Iran and Herzog would not change Israeli policy towards the Palestinians

  March 18, 2015

Ali Abunimah: Palestinians Better Off with Netanyahu
Netanyahu invoked racist calls about Arabs flowing to the polls to get out his vote; his win will make it easier to isolate Israel because Netanyahu is the face of Israel as it really is

  March 18, 2015

Did Kerry Open the Door to Negotiating with Assad?
Larry Wilkerson says Assad is not going anywhere, and the US is late in recognizing that reality

  March 17, 2015

Over Thirty Five Thousand Protest Netanyahu's Leadership in Tel Aviv
There's a crisis of leadership in Israel, and it's that no one wants to be the leader, says Shir Hever of the Alternative Information Center

  March 10, 2015

How Iran's Fight Against ISIS in Iraq Helps American Interests
Professor Vijay Prashad discusses Iran's major offensive against ISIS in Iraq and the need for a Mideast coalition against ISIS

  March 9, 2015

Netanyahu says Iran Intends to Destroy Israel
Larry Wilkerson says hundreds of Israeli military and intelligence leaders do not consider Iran an existential threat

  March 2, 2015

What Do Ordinary Israelis Think of Netanyahu's U.S. Visit?
Jeff Halper, co-founder and Director of Israeli Committee Against Housing Demolitions, says neither the professional soldiers nor the people of Israel believe that Iran is an immediate security threat

  March 3, 2015

The Class That Ruled Egypt Under Mubarak Remains in Power
The security forces and the police are their tools, and the fight against ISIS has simply emboldened them, says Professor Seif Da'na (pt. 3/3)

  March 1, 2015

Why the $655 Million Verdict Against the PA is Not A Victory for Human Rights
Michael Ratner says a US Court's ruling against the Palestinian Authority demonstrates America's hypocrisy towards Israel by impeding justice for victims of Israel while holding the Palestinian people collectively responsible for the acts of a few

  February 28, 2015

What Role Can Social Media Play in Supporting Protests Against Egypt's Military Regime?
Professor Seif Da'na says though the broad underlying discontent against the Egypt's military regime persists, future uprisings won't take the shape of the Jan. 25, 2011 uprising (2/3)

  February 26, 2015

Netanyahu on a Destructive Path
The tension between President Obama and Israeli PM Netanyahu is fundamentally over whether the issue of Iran and its nuclear program should be addressed through diplomacy and negotiations or absolute Iranian surrender, says Phyllis Bennis, author of "Understanding the US-Iran Crisis: A Primer"

  February 26, 2015

Prejudicial Trial, Prejudicial Verdict: $218 Million
Update: On Feb 23 the jury found the PA and PLO liable for terror attacks in Israel. Michael Ratner argues the odds were stacked against the Palestine Liberation Organization(PLO) and Palestinian Authority(PA)

  February 23, 2015

Iran Negotiation Leaks Won't Affect Netanyahu's Prospect for Re-election
Economist Shir Hever also discusses an Associated Press report about attacks on the Gaza civilian population during Operation Protective Edge

  February 18, 2015

Libyan Chaos and the Islamic State (2/2)
Vijay Prashad, author of "Arab Spring, Libyan Winter," says Libya is awash with weapons and fighters, much like Afghanistan 25 years ago after the withdrawal of Russia

  February 18, 2015

Libyan Chaos and the Islamic State (1/2)
Vijay Prashad says the NATO bombing of 2011 destroyed the Libyan state and created the conditions for the ongoing struggle between armed groups

  February 17, 2015

Anonymous Hackers Declare Cyber War Against ISIS
Ola Bini of Thoughtworks explains the war strategy and its effectiveness

  February 11, 2015

Why ISIS Burning Jordanian Pilot May Unify Arab World
Prof. Vijay Prashad discusses the significance of the of anti-ISIS protests after the immolation of a Jordanian pilot and the possible future outcomes of these events

  February 7, 2015

Shaimaa al-Sabbagh, Member of the Socialist Popular Alliance Party Moments Before She was Killed by Riot Police in Cairo
Professor Seif Da'na explains that Shaimaa al-Sabbagh is a victim of the current struggle for legitimacy taking place in Egypt (1/3 Parts)

  February 8, 2015

Militant Islam is an Instrument of Saudi-Pakistan-US Policy (1/2)
Prabir Purkayastha tells Paul Jay that the fulcrum of U.S. military policies in the region is at one end Saudi Arabia and Israel, and the other is Pakistan - ISIS is a product of the failed policies of this alliance

  February 3, 2015

New Iran Sanctions Could Kill Negotiations, Lead to War
The Senate Banking Committee advanced legislation last week that many see as a threat to negotiations between the United States and Iran. TRNN's Thomas Hedges speaks to Jamal Abdi of the National Iranian-American Council who says that failed talks could lead to armed conflict.

  February 1, 2015

Medieval Monarchies and Islamo-Fascism (2/2)
In part two, Newsclick's Prabir Purkayastha tells Paul Jay that if the Gulf State medieval monarchies are not removed, there won't be a long-term solution to the crisis in the region

  February 5, 2015

Netanyahu and Boehner Tag-Teaming on Iran Could Backfire On Both of Them
Professor Vijay Prashad says Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is a high risk gambler whose relationship with the Obama administration has hit rock bottom

  February 1, 2015

Will the Kurdish Coalition Hold Kobani?
Edmund Ghareeb, author of The Kurdish Question in Iraq, says hundreds of Kurdish villages and small towns remain under the control of the Islamic State

  January 27, 2015

US Resumes Drone Strikes in Yemen Despite Political Leadership Vacuum
Scholar and journalist Waalid Al-Saqaf says continued US drone strikes and foreign involvement will push Yemen towards a civil war and do nothing to address the growing humanitarian catastrophe

  January 28, 2015

Pre-Election Posturing Behind Netanyahu's DC Visit
Journalist Max Blumenthal says Netanyahu's March visit to Congress is nothing more than posturing before the upcoming Israeli election and signals the Israeli leaders further embrace of the Republican party

  January 24, 2015

The Saudis - Oil, ISIS and Revolution
Loretta Napoleoni says little will change after death of King Abdullah, but the Saudis cannot sustain low oil prices for much longer; they have lost control of ISIS; and their big fear is revolution

  January 25, 2015

American Sniper: Honoring a Fallen Hero or Whitewashing a Murderous Occupation?
Journalist Max Blumenthal says the film American Sniper promotes lies falsehoods about Navy SEAL Chris Kyle along with the US invasion and occupation of Iraq

  January 26, 2015

GOP Leadership's Invitation to Netanyahu a Provocation Aimed at War with Iran
Phyllis Bennis says the invitation issued to Netanyahu to speak in the US Congress, and the call for more sanctions against Iran, is a call for war

  January 25, 2015

Iraq Prepares Austerity Budget
Prof. Sabah Alnasseri says Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi is planning to cut social sector employment as collapsing oil prices, corruption, and the anti-ISIS campaign will leave the government short on revenue

  February 1, 2015

Israel Kills Hezbollah Leaders Ahead of Elections
Research economist Shir Hever says Israel's aggression is intentionally timed with Israel's elections, distracting the electorate from domestic economic issues

  January 21, 2015

Endemic Corruption in Iraqi Gov. Will Hamper Anti-ISIS Efforts
Professor Sabah Alnasseri of York University says the systemic corruption of the Iraqi state, institutionalized by the U.S. in order to ensure loyalty of the Iraqi elites, is at the core of all social misery in Iraq

  January 15, 2015

Will the ICC Charge Israel With War Crimes?
Michael Ratner, Chair of the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights in Berlin, says it's uncertain if the move by Palestinians to join the ICC will lead to cases on the last military assault on Gaza or the continued settlement construction

  January 7, 2015

Early Elections Could Result in Most Right-Wing Coalition in Israel's History
Journalist Max Blumenthal says centrist parties have no other political purpose besides promoting the image of Israel as the only democracy in the Middle East

  December 5, 14

Iraqi-Kurd Oil Accord
Will the accord pave the way to a united Iraq to fight the IS? Antonia Juhasz, the author of The Tyranny of Oil: The World's Most Powerful Industry, discusses its implications

  December 5, 14

The Geopolitics of Tumbling Oil Prices
Michael Klare, the author of The Race for What's Left: The Global Scramble for the World's Last Resources, connects the dropping oil prices to global politics and climate change

  December 4, 14

Dropped Charges For Mubarak Yet Another Moment in the Counterrevolution
Maged Mandour, political analyst for Open Democracy, explains the political and economic power of the military in the Egyptian state

  December 19, 14

OPEC Steps On The Gas Pedal
Gas and oil production is dropping in the US because it is reliant on $100 a barrel, anything less is not feasible for shale oil producers says journalist Steve Horn

  December 3, 14

Is Congress' Call for ISIS War Debate a Sham?
In the wake of continued airstrikes in Syria, critics say most members of Congress are on board with ISIS battle since it marries the liberal interventionist and neocon agenda of regime change in Syria

  December 10, 14

Was Convicted Palestinian-American Rasmea Yousef Odeh Allowed a Fair Defense?
Independent journalist Charlotte Silver discusses how the defense was blocked from including the role of torture and PTSD in her case

  November 12, 14

On the Verge of a Historic Nuclear Energy Deal with Iran?
Unknown contents of President Obama's letter to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei of Iran under scrutiny by Republicans and the blogosphere as a historic deal nears, says Trita Parsi, President of the National Iranian American Council

  November 11, 14

Gaza News Roundup: The Mavi Marmara, Operation Protective Edge, and Dempsey
IPS Fellow Phyllis Bennis discusses the International Criminal Court's decision to not pursue a case against Israel for the Mavi Marmara incident; the Amnesty International Report on incidents during Operative Protective Edge; and U.S. General Martin Dempsey's defense of Israel's actions during that campaign

  November 10, 14

Fall of Berlin Wall Began Eastern Expansion of NATO
Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern says the fall of the Berlin wall should have been an opportunity to create a constructive alliance with Russia, but instead, it became an opportunity to contain and isolate it

  November 9, 14

Occupation and Settlements: The Roots of Unrest in Jerusalem
Political economist Shir Hever discusses the economic and political conditions of Palestinians in Jerusalem, while IPS Fellow Phyllis Bennis says U.S. and Israel will continue to cooperate in maintaining the occupation despite reports of a setback in relations

  November 9, 14

Islamic State Born of Deteriorating Economic Conditions in Iraq
Poverty and inequality created by the plunder of Iraq's wealth by elites and multinational corporations after the US occupation of Iraq were a great recruiting tool for ISIS, says Professor Sabah Alnasseri of York University's Department of Political Science

  November 4, 14

Iraqi Parliament Takes Two Months to Appoint Two Key Cabinet Ministers
"You get your man, I get mine" method of appointing a cabinet just means more of the same corrupt elite at the helm while 3 million Iraqis remain internally displaced, says Sabah Alnasseri, Professor at York University's Department of Political Science.

  November 3, 14

A Third Intifada on the Horizon?
Journalist Max Blumenthal discusses the situation in Jerusalem and the reconstruction plans for Gaza

  November 2, 14

Nuclear Agreement with Iran May Become Midterm Election Fodder in Congress
Larry Wilkerson, former chief of staff to the secretary of state Colin Powell, says there are three different groups of Republicans that would like to see the Iran nuclear deal fail.

  October 28, 14

Growing Rift Between US & Turkey Over Arming Kurds
Baris Karaagac: Ankara remains opposed assisting to PKK-linked Kurdish rebels, whom they consider a terrorist organization

  October 28, 14

Jerusalem and the Fate of Palestinians
Israeli activist Jeff Halper says the recent tension and violence in Jerusalem is a product of defeated Palestinian political resistance and Israel's policy of Judaization

  November 2, 14

Kurdish Fighters Move to Regain Kobani
The coalition is not what it appears to be - Vice President Biden was right, says Patrick Cockburn the author of The Jihadis Return: Isis and the New Sunni Uprising

  October 24, 14

US Dropping Arms and Ammunition to Syrian Kurds in Kobani
Reese Erlich, freelance correspondent and author of Inside Syria, says the irony of the support to the Kurds in Kobani is that the PKK is considered a terrorist organization by the US

  October 23, 14

Nearly Four Years After the Revolution, Where is Egypt Headed?
Journalist Sharif Abdel Kouddous and scholar Mervat Hatem discuss the current social and political situation in Egypt - The Global African - Telesur

  October 21, 14

Nuclear Deal with Iran 95% Complete
Larry Wilkerson, former chief of staff to Secretary of State Collin Powell, says he is optimistic that the nuclear negotiations with Iran are 95 percent complete, but what does lifting sanctions really mean?

  October 21, 14

U.S. Will Fail In Attempt to Create Proxy Army in Syria
Phyllis Bennis says Obama has been right - in rhetoric - about one thing: there is no military solution to defeating the Islamic State

  October 16, 14

Does Iran Have Legitimate Nuclear Energy Needs? (2/2)
Scholar Mehdi Sarram says though Russia is committed by contract to deliver low-enriched energy to Iran until 2021, why should Iran buy it from the Russians if they can produce it themselves?

  October 20, 14

Does Iran Have Legitimate Nuclear Energy Needs? (1/2)
Scholar Mehdi Sarram discusses why Iran feels the need to develop nuclear energy and gives an update on the P5+1 talks

  October 20, 14

Does Turkey Want Kobane to Fall?
Baris Karaagac explains Turkey's position towards the Islamic State

  October 10, 14

US and Iran are Indirectly Coordinating Efforts against IS
The idea of Iran as partner of the US in the battle against IS will not have sufficient political support in Iran, among the allies, or domestically, says Trita Parsi, president of the National Iranian American Council

  October 22, 14

Canadian MPs Vote to Expand Support to Fight IS
Prime Minister Harper is an honorary conservative American, says Ariel Salzmann, associate professor at Queen's University

  October 8, 14

Privatization, Occupation, and the Israeli Economy
Political economist Shir Hever says recent plans to privatize struggling state-owned companies in Israel are hastened by the occupation of Palestinian territories

  October 13, 14

Fall of Kobani Reveals Failure of U.S. Bombing Campaign
Journalist Patrick Cockburn says U.S.-led airstrikes have not degraded or destroyed the Islamic State (IS), who now control about a quarter of Iraq

  October 7, 14

Turkey Joins the War Campaign against the Islamic State
Scholar Edmund Ghareeb explains how the authorization for military force against IS by the Turkish parliament will affect peace negotiations with the Kurds

  October 5, 14

Thousands of New Israeli Settlements Approved as Netanyahu Pledges Two-State Solution
During a White House visit, President Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu ignore tough issues around Israeli-Gaza conflict while protestors demand Netanyahu be held accountable for war crimes

  October 3, 14

Is the Islamic State a Tool of the Saudis?
Ali Al-Ahmed says IS is a key part of Saudi Arabia's strategy in the Middle East

  October 3, 14

US-Brokered Afghan Unity Government Paves Way for Continued Military Presence
The Center for International Policy's Shukria Dellawar breaks down the players behind Afghanistan's new coalition government

  October 3, 14

Underestimating ISIS: An Indictment of Decades of Failed US Policy in the Middle East
Larry Wilkerson, former chief of staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell, says the US military's failure to understand and adequately respond to ISIS underscores America's decades-long blunders in Iraq

  October 21, 14

Turkish-Syrian Border "The Great Hole" in Obama's UN Speech
Vijay Prashad says Obama's comments at the UN on enforcing international norms have no credibility with most people around the world and are aimed at appeasing liberal unease

  October 3, 14

What Role Is Turkey Playing in the War against ISIS?
Lecturer Baris Kaaragaac says Turkey is trying to manage its response to the Islamic State in such a way to prevent the Kurds from consolidating political or military power

  October 3, 14

Coalition to Fight the Islamic State Unlikely to Succeed
Vijay Prashad: If the West is serious about tackling ISIS it must lessen the chaos within Syria and seek a political solution

  October 3, 14

Obama's 'Moderate' Syrian Rebels Are Nowhere to Be Found
Author & Journalist Patrick Cockburn says defeating ISIS requires an end to the civil war in Syria

  October 3, 14

U.S. Intelligence Official: No Evidence ISIL Is Planning Imminent Attack on America
Obama's plan to support the Shi'a and Kurds in Iraq could worsen sectarianism fighting, and a new report says arms sent to moderate Syrian rebels have ended up in ISIS's hands

  October 3, 14

The Bennis Plan: Here Is a Real Strategy for Dealing with ISIS
IPS fellow Phyllis Bennis says military strategies have failed; only a political and diplomatic solution will work

  October 3, 14

ISIS Wants the US Drawn into a Ground War
Andrew Levine says the Islamist forces have learned that a ground war is to their advantage

  October 3, 14

Obama's Syria Plan Will Strengthen IS and Warlordism
Omar Dahi says Obama is wrong to say the Assad regime has no legitimacy, as most Syrians want an end to war, the creation of a broad-front government, and a national army to confront warlords and extremism

  October 3, 14

Israel Facing Major Economic Consequences for 50 Day War on Gaza
Political Economist Shir Hever of the Alternative Information Center says the latest conflict with Gaza began after a crisis emerged in Israel over the defense budget

  October 3, 14

American Bombs Will Not Defeat ISIS
Vijay Prashad says the Saudis and Iran must be part of a regional solution that includes ending support for jihadists in Syria

  October 3, 14

New Iraqi Government Will Abide by U.S. Regional Goals
Professor Sabah Alnasseri says the purpose of the campaign against ISIL is to enable continued political and military intervention by the U.S. throughout the Middle East

  October 3, 14

Is The Anti-ISIS Campaign Attempting to Renew War Against Assad?
Glen Ford: The U.S.-Saudi strategy of using jihadists as proxies in their wars is collapsing before our very eyes

  October 3, 14

US-Israel Pressure Palestine Not to Join the ICC
Michael Ratner: Will the Palestinian Authority join the ICC despite intimidation?

  October 3, 14

New York Times Runs Ad Equating ISIS and Hamas
Just Foreign Policy's Robert Naiman and TRNN's Lia Tarachansky respond to the argument that Hamas parallels ISIS

  October 3, 14



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