The balance of power in the Middle East is shifting, and Turkey's changing role and rising influence with other countries provides both a risk and an opportunity for Washington.
Without reconciliation between Palestinian factions and the political reunification of the West Bank and Gaza, not only a better future for Gaza but the two-state solution itself will remain out of reach.
Even if Fayyad is making mild administrative and fiscal improvements in some areas, this cannot obscure the deeper problem that most Palestinian political institutions are actually in deep trouble and the most important ones are in a state of advanced decay.
The international community’s understandable admiration for Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad and his efforts to rebuild the West Bank obscures a dangerous regression in democracy and human rights.
The Arab media coverage of the Israeli attack on the Gaza Flotilla painted the events in religious terms, disregarding the complexity of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and provoking audiences to anger rather than enabling a rational and constructive response.
Saudi Arabia plays a key role in many issues of critical interest to the United States—including terrorism, Iran’s nuclear ambitions, the Middle East peace process, and Afghanistan.
Turkey is emerging strongly from the Great Recession, but the Euro area crisis, a soaring current account deficit, and domestic political uncertainty threaten the economy.
With budget deficits on the rise, the Middle East and North Africa’s oil importing countries must reform their fuel subsidy programs, which benefit the rich more than the poor and waste fiscal resources.
The private sector has become the main driver of growth in the Middle East and North Africa, but more consistent and equitable regulations are needed to transform the region into a diversified, high-performance economy.
Sanctions alone are unlikely to persuade Iran to stop enriching uranium, but there are few alternative measures that would increase pressure and change the behavior of the Iranian regime.
The G20 still has far to go in terms of reforming the global financial system and calming the lingering economic turmoil, but the experience of sovereign wealth funds provides a useful outline for what is possible.
In spite of recent tensions, the United States and Turkey still share important common interests. However, Turkey is a growing power and there are significant areas where Turkey’s perspective and interests differ from those of the United States.
The ideals espoused by the Green Movement in Iran continue to hold a strong appeal to the country’s youthful population, but the movement needs to explain to Iranian workers why it would govern better than the current regime if it wants to change the power dynamic in Iran.
The recent UN sanctions may have been diluted by the strategic interests of members of the UN Security Council, but they could have a stronger impact if they lead to more unilateral sanctions from European countries.
A year after the June 2009 controversial presidential elections in Iran, domestic discontent continues to simmer and the Iranian regime faces a new round of international economic sanctions.
Intimidation by Ahmadinejad's regime succeeded in keeping opposition protesters off the streets on the first anniversary of Iran's rigged election. To regain its momentum, the Green Movement must tackle five key challenges.
Three days before the anniversary of Iran’s controversial election, the United Nations Security Council imposed its fourth round of sanctions against the country’s nuclear program. These sanctions could end up strengthening the opposition’s argument that the country is in need of new leadership.
Regional cooperation and discreet aid from the West are critical for countries to regain control of their territory and prevent al-Qaeda from gaining ground in Africa.
With its increased regional and global influence, Turkey is in a position to seize a leading role in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and to challenge Iran for leadership of regional public opinion.
The Middle East is in a state of heightened tension following Israel’s armed attack on a flotilla of humanitarian aid. If nations in the region are determined to provoke a war, little can be done to prevent conflict from escalating.