Middle East and North Africa News

Ghannouchi: Middle East at Crossroads

Sep 30, 2014
On September 29, Sheikh Rachid al Ghannouchi argued that the Middle East is at a crossroads rather than in a crisis. On one hand, the region is experiencing a rise in extremism and instability, but it is also moving “towards democracy, development and progress,” he said at the United States Institute of Peace.

Iran’s Dinner Diplomacy

Sep 30, 2014
"It’s crunch time for diplomacy on Iran’s controversial nuclear program." Last year, President Rouhani answered Obama's question of possible coöperation on other matters with a "Persian proverb: 'Let’s raise the baby we just gave birth to before we have another.' This year, given the success of ISIS, the Iranians seem to be in a bit more of a hurry to get that process started" says Robin Wright.

Sexual Violence Under ISIS Control

Sep 25, 2014
"You should focus on 50% of the population, which is women, and see what is happening to them. You should mention them, you should have the courage to say 'yes this is done to our women; this is done to our sisters, daughters, wives...'" said Haleh Esfandiari.

Ironies in Obama’s U.N. Address

Sep 25, 2014
"As Washington teams up with autocratic regimes–some of which notoriously use the cover of their faith to justify unfair policies–the United States may have credibility problems among the very people it hopes to help," writes Robin Wright.

Americanasaurus and the March to War in Syria

Sep 25, 2014
"In the words of the late Fouad Ajami, I suffer from the prejudice of low expectations. I'll own up to it. But after watching the United States operate in this broken, angry, and dysfunctional region under both Republican and Democratic administrations, and considering our allies and enemies in this situation, we damn well better keep our expectations real," writes Aaron David Miller.

Interpreting Iran’s Mixed Messages

Sep 24, 2014
"These mixed messages suggest that the Iranian leadership is either split over relations with the United States and the handling of the ISIS crisis in Syria and Iraq, or that it hasn't decided exactly which positions to adopt at a time of rapid and unpredictable change," writes Haleh Esfandiari.

Obama Can’t Destroy the Islamic State Without Iran’s Help

Sep 24, 2014
"Nobody should underestimate the challenge of defeating ISIL. But the prospect of this crisis leading to an alignment of U.S., Sunni and Iranian interests holds out the prospect of finally creating lasting stability in the Middle East," writes Jack A. Goldstone.

MENA Women's News Brief

Sep 23, 2014
The Middle East Program will send out the latest developments on women’s issues in the Middle East and North Africa region on a bi-monthly basis.
Webcast

Jane Harman on Face the Nation

Sep 22, 2014
"Our counter narrative against ISIL is what is going to win the day. If we don't win the argument, we, the coalition of forty, are never going to prevail against the extremists." says Jane Harman.

The Coalition of Convenience

Sep 18, 2014
"The problem won't be fixed by a coalition of hangers-on and the not-so-willing -- nor, frankly, by the superwilling. This is ultimately a Syrian and Iraqi problem; it will require the kind of local buy-in that doesn't exist now and perhaps has never existed," writes Aaron David Miller.

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