United States

Can the US make Iran sanctions stick?

August 6, 2018

By James M. Dorsey / Mid-East Soccer. Recent Iranian trade figures suggest that the United Arab Emirates, a strong backer of US efforts to squeeze Iran economically, could emerge alongside China as the Islamic republic’s foremost lifeline in seeking to blunt the impact of harsh sanctions. Russia and Oman rather than Europe are emerging as…

Talking to Rouhani: Is Trump shooting from the hip or following a script?

August 3, 2018

By James M. Dorsey / Mid-East Soccer. Message to Abu Dhabi, Riyadh and Tel Aviv: Not to worry, US President Donald J. Trump has no intention of meeting his Iranian counterpart, Hassan Rouhani, unconditionally. On the contrary, Mr. Trump’s surprise announcement that he is willing to talk to Mr. Rouhani is likely part of a…

Russian Hackers: The shadowy world of US and Gulf hacks just got murkier

July 17, 2018

By James M. Dorsey / Mid-East Soccer. The covert Qatar-United Arab Emirates cyberwar that helped spark the 13-month-old Gulf crisis that pits a Saudi-United Arab Emirates-led alliance against Qatar may have just gotten murkier with the indictment of 12 Russian intelligence agents by US Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Mr. Mueller’s indictment provided detail on website…

Saudi religious diplomacy targets Jerusalem

July 3, 2018

By James M. Dorsey     A United Arab Emirates-backed Saudi effort to wrest control from Jordan of Islam’s holy places in Jerusalem signals a sharper, more overt edge to Saudi religious diplomacy and the kingdom’s quest for regional hegemony that risks deepening divides in the Muslim world.     The effort also serves to…

The Middle East: History threatens to repeat itself

July 1, 2018

By James M. Dorsey If the notion that history repeats itself is accurate, it is nowhere truer than in the Middle East where the international community, caught by surprise by the 2011 popular Arab revolts, has reverted to opting for political stability as opposed to sustainability, ignoring the undercurrents of change wracking the Middle East.…

Indonesian Muslim leader signals global shifts in meetings with Pence and Netanyahu

June 23, 2018

By James M. Dorsey / Mid-East Soccer. Yahya Staquf, a diminutive, soft-spoken leader of Nahdlatul Ulama, the world’s largest Muslim movement, and Indonesian president Joko Widodo’s advisor on religious affairs, has held a series of meetings in recent weeks that reflect the Muslim world’s shifting attitudes towards Israel and the Palestinians and a re-alignment of…

North Korea Can Never Trust the U.S.A.

June 19, 2018

By David William Pear, June 18, 2018  The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (i.e. North Korea) cannot trust the United States of America. The US does not keep its promises, honor its treaties and obey international laws. This is not opinion; it is the history of the US, beginning with the many broken promises and…

Defiant Trump Ignites Trade War with Canada and G-7 Allies

June 12, 2018

Citing national security issues to get around WTO rules, Trump ordered tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum imports from Canada and EU countries.  William Black and Gerald Epstein discusses the implications of these tariffs on the different economies

The battle for the Iranian nuclear deal: China approaches a watershed

May 21, 2018

By James M. Dorsey / Mid-East Soccer. Conventional wisdom has it that China stands to benefit from the US withdrawal from the 2015 international nuclear agreement with Iran, particularly if major European companies feel that the risk of running afoul of US secondary sanctions is too high. In doing so, China would draw on lessons…

Playing US sanctions: China walks a fine line in Iran

Playing US sanctions: China walks a fine line in Iran

May 15, 2018

By James M. Dorsey / Mid-East Soccer. Chinese businessman Sheng Kuan Li didn’t worry about sanctions when he decided in 2010 to invest $200 million in a steel mill in Iran that started producing ingots and billet within months of the lifting of punitive measures against the Islamic republic as part of 2015 international nuclear…