Tag: Middle East

What Trump and Corruption Cost Us

Watching the scandal about Ukraine unfold, I have thought often about my former colleague as a United States ambassador, Marie Yovanovitch. An experienced, thoughtful, and effective senior officer, she had made remarks about corruption that put her in the cross hairs of the Ukrainian government to which she was accredited, and was quickly removed from […]

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In Syria, Trump Distills a Foreign Policy of Impulse, and Faces the Fallout

WASHINGTON — No one should have been surprised, and yet it seems that everyone was. President Trump made clear long ago that he wanted to get out of the Middle East, but even some of his own supporters evidently assumed that he would not follow through or that someone would stop him. As a result, […]

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Trump’s Withdrawal From Syria: Betrayal of Kurds or End to Endless War?

This is Naked Capitalism fundraising week. 1475 donors have already invested in our efforts to combat corruption and predatory conduct, particularly in the financial realm. Please join us and participate via our donation page, which shows how to give via check, credit card, debit card, or PayPal. Read about why we’re doing this fundraiser and […]

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Does Donald Trump Know What His Syria Policy Is?

American diplomats thought they had negotiated a solution to a seemingly intractable problem. The United States needed Kurdish-led forces in northern Syria to face off against remnants of the Islamic State. But Turkey, a NATO ally, saw those same Kurds as terrorists, allied with separatists inside Turkey. To prevent a Turkish invasion, the three sides […]

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Saudi Arabia and Iran Make Quiet Openings to Head Off War

After years of growing hostility and competition for influence, Saudi Arabia and Iran have taken steps toward indirect talks to try to reduce the tensions that have brought the Middle East to the brink of war, according to officials from several countries involved in the efforts. Even the prospect of such talks represents a remarkable […]

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Egypt’s Harsh Crackdown Quashes Protest Movement

CAIRO — A group of teenagers arrested on their way to buy new school clothes. An illiterate shoeshiner picked up from the street. Eight people stopped while they were eating from a street food cart. And a 28-year-old financial auditor, who was walking to his car after dinner when police officers ordered him to stop. […]

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What Jamal Khashoggi’s Murder Did to Us

The last time I saw my friend Jamal Khashoggi was in September 2017, when he was settling into his self-imposed exile in the United States. We argued about politics over dinner at a steak house in Washington. We cracked jokes about my struggle with a small piece of steak and his ease at devouring a […]

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Porsche Exclusive Built Seven Unique 959s For A Sheikh, Including This Golden One

This year, Porsche Exclusive celebrated 33 years since it officially began crafting tailor-made vehicles for affluent customers. However, even before setting up its bespoke vehicle division, Porsche made some unique cars for buyers whose motorized wishes had to be granted. People like Mansour Ojjeh, for example, who had Porsche’s special requests department build him a […]

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Iran Doesn’t Want Conflict, Says Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, But Any US-Saudi Attack Would Spark ‘All-Out War’

Yves here. Sadly, it bears repeating that Iran has made clear it is ready to launch a brutal counter-strike if attacked. And in case you missed it, at the top of Links comments yesterday, PlutoniumKun shredded the US/Saudi claim that Iran was behind the drone attack on Saudi oil facilities: Saudi Arabia shows ‘material evidence’ […]

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Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, Former President of Tunisia, Dies at 83

Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, Tunisia’s former autocratic president whose extravagant life and oppressive rule inspired the 2011 Arab Spring revolts, died on Thursday in exile in Saudi Arabia, the Tunisian state news agency reported. He was 83. The death of Mr. Ben Ali came just days after Tunisians voted in national elections, a new milestone […]

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Trump’s National Security Officials to Meet on Possible Iran Options

WASHINGTON — Senior national security officials from across the government are scheduled to meet Thursday to refine a list of potential targets to strike in Iran, should President Trump order a military retaliation for missile and drone attacks on Saudi Arabian oil fields last weekend, officials said. Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper and Gen. Joseph […]

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The Trump Doctrine, Revealed

Thomas Jefferson warned against entangling alliances. John F. Kennedy was ready to pay any price and bear any burden. Teddy Roosevelt advised us to speak softly and carry a big stick. And then there’s Donald Trump. Locked, half-cocked, and probably bluffing. That’s the lesson Iran’s leaders appear to have drawn following a carefully calibrated sequence […]

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The End of Saudi Arabia’s Illusion

The missiles that struck last weekend in Saudi Arabia did not just destroy oil tanks. They also dealt the final blow to a doctrine that has been fading for years: the belief that the United States maintains a security umbrella able to protect the oil-rich Persian Gulf states from their enemies — and, especially, from […]

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