Shia Insurrection In Saudi Arabia Middle East Middle East Opinions 

Shia Insurrection In Saudi Arabia; The Battle For Awamiya

By Thomas C. Mountain Since May, 2017 an ongoing insurgency has been raging in the Shia heartland town of Awamiya in eastern Saudi Arabia and its only thanks to the BBC being allowed to enter the area and film the destruction that the world can see how the House of Saud’s war against the Shia population of Yemeni has now expanded to include the Shia population of eastern Saudi Arabia. The BBC World report shown on Wednesday, August 16, seemed to have come from Syria, with al-Zara, the ancient Shia capital…

Read More
Benjamin Netanyahu (file photo) Middle East Middle East 

An open letter to Prime Minister Netanyahu: The Unfinished Six Day War

Dear Prime Minister Netanyahu, Since you celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of the victory of the Six Day War, did you ponder what this triumph has done to the Palestinian people, and to the moral character of the state of Israel? I am not sure how harshly history will judge you, but one thing is certain — I, like millions of Jews around the world, deeply believe that no prime minister of Israel has done more damage to the country’s future security and well being, than you have. The sad irony…

Read More
Trump and Wife Melanie Middle East Middle East 

Trump’s ‘Historic’ Visit To The Middle East: Much Ado About Nothing

Sadly, President Trump’s visit to the Middle East only confirmed my skepticism about what might come out of it. Trump went to the region with nothing to offer to mitigate the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and received no commitment from either Israeli or Palestinian leaders to resume the peace negotiations in earnest, but he received lots of platitudes and empty good-will gestures. In his meeting with the Saudi King Salman and the rest of the heads of Arab states, he heard the chanting against the Iranian threat and joined the chorus without…

Read More
Youth Summit of Islamic Development Bank Middle East Middle East 

Two-Day Youth Summit of Islamic Development Bank Annual Meeting Begins

KSA, Jeddah – 15 May 2017: Delegates at the first Youth Summit of the Islamic Development Bank Group Annual Meeting drew attention to the key role of youth in overcoming development issues in areas ranging from education, employment, entrepreneurship, networking to financial inclusion. The two-day Youth Summit, which began today, has brought together youth leaders, influential thinkers, policy makers, entrepreneurs and international development policy experts to discuss critical matters of relevance to youth in IDBG member countries. It offers a unique platform to generate ideas for youth engagement in socio-economic…

Read More
Middle East Middle East OP-ED 

The disunity of Israel’s opposition parties is serving the occupation

Israel will, on June 5th, reach the grim milestone of fifty years of occupation of the West Bank. Many Israelis have become complacent, and succumbed to the government’s argument that the continuing occupation is necessary to safeguard Israel’s national security. Others are lamenting the day, as they view the occupation not only as a gross violation of Palestinian human rights, but a real menace to Israel’s democratic nature, and Jewish national character. Whereas right-wing Israeli governments have maintained the occupation by any means available, including the use of force, the…

Read More
Erdogan Middle East Middle East 

A Sad Day For Turkey

The razor-thin victory (51.3% to 48.7%) of Turkey’s President Erdogan in the referendum held on April 16 in fact denies Erdogan the mandate to govern with the sweeping powers the new constitution grants the President, especially when the results of the referendum are seriously contested. Even if there was no outright fraud or irregularities in the votes (which by all accounts were rampant), the conditions under which the referendum was held made a mockery of free and fair elections. Given Erdogan’s domestic and foreign policy conduct leading up to the…

Read More
Donald Trump Middle East Middle East 

USA moves toward major intervention in Yemen

The USA, according to Defense Secretary “Mad Dog” Mattis, he who ordered the use of chemical weapons in Fallujah, Iraq, is about to take a major step towards direct intervention in support of Saudi Arabia’s war on the Yemeni people. According to Jeffrey St. Clair, editor of CounterPunch, this war has already seen 90,000 Saudi airstrikes on Yemen, or one every 12 minutes, 123 a day for two years now. With direct US military involvement, it will only get worse for the USA has been limiting its involvement to fueling,…

Read More
Erdogan Middle East Middle East OP-ED 

The Looming End To The Western-Turkish Alliance

The growing tension between Turkey and its Western allies, which was further heightened during the Obama administration, is narrowing the space for cooperation between the two sides and in fact is progressively worsening. Erdogan’s hope that he and President Trump would improve their ties as members of NATO has dramatically diminished. Washington and the EU still deeply disagree with Ankara on a host of issues, which are unlikely to be resolved on a mutually gainful basis any time in the foreseeable future. Turkey’s growing retreat from Western values may have…

Read More
Can Israel Fight A War On Three Fronts? A Nightmarish Scenario Middle East Middle East OP-ED 

Can Israel Fight A War On Three Fronts? A Nightmarish Scenario

Although Prime Minister Netanyahu is known for his focus on the Palestinian and Iranian threats to Israel’s national security, in recent months he has increasingly sounded the alarm over Iran in particular rather than the Palestinians. As the defeat of ISIS in both Iraq and Syria is all but inevitable, Netanyahu’s main concern now is that Iran will insist on maintaining a strong foothold in Syria by establishing a significant military presence as recompense for its continuing support of the Assad regime throughout the civil war. This, of course, should…

Read More
Trump and Netanyahu Middle East Middle East OP-ED 

Trump And Netanyahu: Embracing Illusions, Ignoring Reality

President Trump remained true to his customary flip-flopping on just about every issue when he stated during a joint press conference with Prime Minister Netanyahu that he is “looking at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both parties like… I can live with either one.” By stating so, Trump gave Netanyahu what he was hoping to get—a departure from the two-state solution. To achieve that, Trump is reportedly looking at other options that would enlist the Arab states—who presently share mutual strategic interests with Israel to form…

Read More