Middle East

Water Conflict: Iran’s Farmers Take on the Establishment

Iranfarmer, cc Flickr Beshef, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Water shortages are fueling protests in Iran, drawing a forceful response from the authorities.

Yemen Civil War: Houthis Fire Missile at Saudi Oil Tanker

Yemenwar, cc Flickr Felton Davis, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Houthi missile attacks against Saudi Arabia won’t do much damage, but they will propel the bloody Yemen civil war into news headlines the world over.

Grim Prospects for Turkey-Saudi Relations

cc kremlin.ru, http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/52825, modified

As is often the case in the Middle East, third-party bilateral relationships are driving Turkey and Saudi Arabia further apart.

Trump to Sink Further into the Syria Quagmire?

President Trump at 2017 CPAC, Flickr Gage Skidmore, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Weeks after reportedly telling his generals to draw up plans for a withdrawal from Syria, the US president finds himself being pulled back in.

Focus Shifts to Manbij as Turkey Moves into Afrin Unopposed

Kurdish YPG Fighter, cc Flickr Kurdishstruggle, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

An attack on Manbij would put President Erdogan in direct conflict with the US military and its Syrian allies.

Rising Tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean: Another South China Sea?

EastMedGas-Final-THUMB

Border disputes, lucrative energy resources, and an aggressive regional hegemon – the similarities between the Eastern Mediterranean and the South China Sea are striking.

Tillerson Fired as Trump Veers “America First”

cc Flickr Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Trump has installed a kindred spirit at the top of the State Department. The move can be expected to reverberate throughout US foreign policy, notably in the administration’s approach to Iran.

Global Forecast (02-21-2018)

GPM-placeholder-forecast

The Assad government hammers Eastern Ghouta, Japan ups its order of F-35s, and a state of emergency is extended in the Maldives.

Assad Jumps into the Afrin Conflict

YPG fighters in Afrin, CC Flickr Kurdishstruggle, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

In a further escalation of the Syrian civil war, Damascus has vowed to help the Kurds of Afrin repel the advance of Turkey’s “Operation Olive Branch.”

Israel and Iran Signal Escalation in Syrian Civil War

cc Flickr U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Tensions left to simmer for most of the war are now boiling over as Israel grapples with the possibility of a long-term Iranian presence in southern Syria.

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