As the 2016 US presidential campaign wound its way through a long string of primaries, fundraisers, and an almost unimaginable marathon of candidate debates, domestic issues largely framed the discussion. Foreign policy issues, however, were drawn mainly in the bright primary colors of blame-casting, dubious accusations, and over-bold promises.
arlier this month and for the first time in the history of the United Nations, the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA)—a UN institution—issued a report arguing that Israeli policies toward the Palestinian people amounted to apartheid. It endorsed economic coercion, or boycotts, divestment, and sanctions of Israel, as a response to these policies. Shortly after the report was issued, a firestorm of criticism followed from many of the usual suspects, particularly the United States and Israel. The executive secretary of ESCWA, Rima Khalaf, was compelled to resign under pressure. The report, authored by academics Richard Falk and Virginia Tilley, was removed from the website of ESCWA after pressure from the United States and Israel, but it remains accessible online.
The signature blueprint of any US president is the federal budget. Donald Trump is giving us an insight into how he views the world and what resources he intends to employ in advancing US interests abroad. The FY 2018 defense budget proposal alters the way the United States projects its power while offering no levelness between defense and diplomacy. However, the chances that the current version of the proposal will pass through the US Congress are slim; a prominent Republican Senator called it “dead on arrival.”
Many Americans and much of the world were both surprised and shocked by Donald Trump’s victory in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Almost all the polls had predicted Hilary Clinton would comfortably win the election. Pundits were shocked that a candidate who seemed so reckless during the campaign, mired in multiple personal and financial scandals, with no previous experience in elected office, and with a seemingly endless penchant for making bigoted and offensive remarks, could be elected to the world’s most powerful office.
This paper discusses the changes underway in Turkish foreign policy in the post Arab Spring period through an analysis of the intellectual and policy reassessments of the AKP and the extent to which these have contributed to the new approach.
The emergence of Hassan Rouhani in the course of Iran’s 2013 presidential election promised a new chapter in the tumultuous relationship between Iran and the US. On September 27, 2013 presidents Obama and Rouhani had a telephone conversation while the latter was in New York for the UN General Assembly meeting. Two months later, Iran and the P5+ 1 signed the interim Agreement in Geneva. By December, during a GCC meeting in Kuwait, Arab countries appeared cautiously optimistic about the agreement. The fact that secret talks between Iran and the US were reported to have taken place much earlier (perhaps as early as during Ahmadinejad’s administration) in Oman may in fact indicate that official Arab awareness and approval of this deal predates its public knowledge.
As Speaker of the United States’ House of Representatives, John Boehner’s invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address the US Congress over Iran’s nuclear project was highly controversial. Following announcement of the invitation, there was a multi-party debate in both the US and Israel. Concerns over and interests in the talk were motivated by an array of factors, many of which were unrelated to Iran or its nuclear program.
Interest in the existence of a Salafi movement, and its possible impact on Lebanon, has increased since the outbreak of the Syrian revolution in March of 2011. This new interest has often taken the form of incitement against, in particular, the so-called Takfiri group of Salafis. Action to counter the Salafi trend became a campaign against the Takfiri, which resulted in a view of the Salafi movement as one that is homogenized, monolithic, and terrorist. The dominant understanding of Salafism then, is that as a movement, it emerged suddenly, and out of nowhere, coming quickly to dominate the political and social life of the Sunni Muslim community in Lebanon. This report will trace out the origins of the Salafi movement, examining it as a social phenomenon that has succeeded because it fills gaps in the current socio-political environment.
Arsal (also spelled Arsaal), is an economically, politically and socially marginalized town in the north of the Bekaa region that sits along the country's frontier with Syria. In this paper, ACRPS staff researcher Hamzeh Almoustafa examines Arsal's role as a flashpoint for jihadist violence, and the spillover from the Syrian revolution.
The Obama administration's hesitance about intervening decisively in Ukraine, which is now locked into an openly armed proxy war with Russia, has both exacerbated the armed conflict in that country and created domestic discord for President Obama, compounding long-standing disagreements over foreign policy in Washington.