Latest Articles about Middle East


Russia Defends ‘Protectorate’ in Central African Republic as Rebels Advance Jacob Zenn  France has historically been the major Western power guaranteeing political stability in the Francophone countries of northwest and central Africa. However, Turkey has increasingly matched French influence in North Africa, while the United... MORE

Putin Exercises Free Hand in South Caucasus

Over the past several weeks, the United States has been preoccupied with the ongoing transition of power in the White House, a riot in the Capitol and a second impeachment of outgoing President Donald Trump (see EDM, January 7, 2021). As a result, Washington’s focus... MORE

The 2020 Karabakh War’s Impact on the Northwestern Border of Iran

The drastically upended situation along the southern edge of the South Caucasus has affected Iran in several complex ways. Among the three large powers surrounding the region—Iran, Russia and Turkey—only Iran borders on the formerly Armenian-occupied Azerbaijani territories of Zangilan, Jabrayil and Fuzuli, which adjoin... MORE

The Iraqi and Kurdish Regional Government’s Sinjar Agreement: Consequences for U.S., Turkish, and Iranian Influence and Rebel Rivalries

On October 9, the Iraqi government headed by Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi and the semi-autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) signed the “Sinjar Agreement” to normalize the situation in the war-torn district of Sinjar in northern Iraq. The agreement stated that only Iraqi federal forces should... MORE

Iran Rapidly Expanding Rail Links With Central Asia and Caucasus

The United States and other Western countries have worked long and hard to marginalize Iran as punishment for its transgressions on the international stage. Nevertheless, Iran’s neighbors as well as states further out, including Russia, China and the Central Asian republics, understand that their plans... MORE

Russia and Iraq Deepen Energy, Military Ties

As the United States hastens its drawdown of troops in Iraq before the January 20 inauguration of President-elect Joseph Biden, Russia is seeking to fill the developing geopolitical vacuum there. On November 25, following discussions in Moscow with Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein, Russia’s top diplomat,... MORE