Middle East Revolution

Regime Change and Upheaval in the Arab World

America Is Stuck With the Mideast

Walter Russell Mead, Wall St. Journal

Libya: Short War, Long Shadow (PDF)

Royal United Services Institute

Why Democracy Is Still Winning

Gideon Rachman, Financial Times

Israel and the Plight of Mideast Christians

Michael Oren, Wall St. Journal

Global oil markets and global commerce mean that American presidents will simply not be able to set this region off to the side....(full article)

Qatar is more and more assuming the role vacated by Egypt in trying to settle local and international disputes....(full article)

In spring 2011, Western military operations, backed by the Arab League, began against the regime of Muammar Qadhafi. Libyan rebels, after being penned in by the regime, began to ta...(full article)

The authoritarian urge to cross-dress in democratic clothes is an implied compliment to the democratic nations. That matters, because western democracies are going through a cris...(full article)

Just as Jews were once expelled from Arab lands, Christians are now being forced from countries they have long inhabited....(full article)

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Most Recent Articles

Hamas Caught Between Tehran and Riyadh - Ali Hashem, Al-Monitor

Hamas is trying to rebuild its relationship with Iran, but mistrust on both sides is impeding the process....

Insights from a Saudi General - Walter Russell Mead, The American Interest

It can be hard to read the tea leaves in a conversation like this—General Eshki no longer holds any official role in the Saudi government, and continues to insist that the di...

Don't Blame Mideast Unrest on Saudi-Iran Rivalry - Rami Khouri, CR

A more complete explanation of the battered Arab region today must include accounting for several other mega-tends: the impact of the last twenty-fix years of non-stop American mil...

Saudi Arabia's 5 Most Lethal Weapons of War - D. DePetris, Nat. Interest

For Saudi Arabia, the conservative Gulf kingdom whose number one priority in the region is to keep the status quo, it’s hard not to come to the conclusion that the entire Mid...

Why Do Arabs Keep Choosing These Leaders? - H. Abdul-Hussain, NOW

For Arabs, choosing leaders is hard. For prime minister, Iraqis can choose between Haidar al-Abadi and Nouri al-Maliki, who are both clueless on democracy. Meanwhile, Egyptians see...

Is Nefertiti In Tut's Tomb? - Amy Davidson, New Yorker

The door in the north wall, Reeves believes, leads to Nefertiti’s burial chamber, and the other to a storeroom, possibly holding treasures. He offers, in support of this theory, ...

ISIS and the Graves of Prophets - Ron Tiersky, RealClearWorld

A prophet's grave is often a myth....

Egypt Lobbies Itself Back into U.S.'s Good Graces - Julian Pecquet, ALM

Congress and the State Department are willing to overlook ongoing human rights abuses in Egypt as Abdel Fatah al-Sisi takes on the Islamic State and keeps the peace with Israel....

A Make-or-Break Moment for Egypt? - Kevin Sullivan, RealClearWorld

The coming months and years will make or break Sissi's government, which has been propped up by the largesse of Gulf monarchies and the United States. The Egyptian president's repu...

Sisi's Regime a Gift to Islamic State - Shadi Hamid, Foreign Policy

How extreme repression in Egypt is producing a new generation of terrorists....

Saving Syria's Christians - Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post

Christianity, whose presence in the Middle East predates Islam’s by 600 years, is about to be cleansed from the Middle East. Egyptian Copts may have found some respite under ...

U.S.-Egypt Dialogue: Drifting Along the Nile - Amy Hawthorne, CFR

In contrast to the shifting and convoluted U.S. message on Egypt in the past few years, Cairo has kept its narrative entirely consistent, if not fully convincing: Egypt is fighting...

Will Saudi Patronage Save Hamas? - Shlomi Eldar, Al-Monitor

Saudi Arabia's patronage of Hamas could help the movement's leadership regain the power usurped by its military wing and save it from collapse....

Bahrain's Bomb Raises Hard Questions - The National

The day after Iran’s foreign minister completed a three-stop tour of the Gulf, two police officers were killed in a bombing in Bahrain. Are the two incidents linked? Of cours...

For the Mideast, It's Still 1979 - Thomas Friedman, New York Times

Nukes are hardly the only threats for this region. Both Iran and Saudi Arabia desperately need to make 2015 the end of the 1979 era. It would be fanciful to predict that they will ...

The Middle East Recalibrates - Stratfor

Stratfor's long-term forecast is that if one's default unit of measurement for time is in decades, then Turkey will become the pre-eminent power in the Middle East....

Middle East in Conflict: Empires Strike Back - Dov Zakheim, Hurriyet

The Saudi-Iranian rivalry also underlays the strong exchange of barbs that took place during Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi’s April 2015 visit to Washington. Asserting ...

All Roads Lead to Syria - Walter Russell Mead, The American Interest

For most Sunnis, the acid test of American intentions is the one place on earth that President Obama wants nothing to do with: the zone of fanaticism, anarchy, and atrocity formerl...

Egypt Struggling with ISIS Insurgency - Jared Malsin, Time

They have attacked on land and at sea, killing dozens of soldiers. They have assassinated a senior official in daylight and attempted to seize a small Sinai town....

Arab Militaries Hold Massive Lead over Iran - Anthony Cordesman, CSIS

In the real world, Iran is anything but the hegemon of the region - as a new CSIS study of the Gulf military balance shows. This study is entitled The Arab-U.S. Strategic Partnersh...

The Rise of the Islamic State in Yemen - Salisbury & Mohsen, Vice News

The IS attacks appear designed to create discord between Yemen's Sunnis and Shias, according to Katherine Zimmerman, an al Qaeda analyst at the conservative American Enterprise Ins...

Russia's Nuclear Power Play in the Middle East - Melissa Hersh, TNI

Russia is making moves in the Middle East nuclear-energy game. It could be time for the United States to get involved, too....

The Real Reason Saudis, Israelis and Neocons Hate Deal - F Kaplan, Slate

Here’s the thing to keep in mind about most critics of the Iran nuclear deal that was signed Tuesday morning: Their objections have nothing to do with the details of the deal...

Saudi Prince: This Is Worse than the North Korea Deal - A. Taylor, WaPo

Prince Bandar bin Sultan, the Saudi ambassador to the United States between 1981 and 2005, has written a damning column in which he compares the Iran nuclear deal to the failed nuc...

A Cautious Hope in Yemen - The National

Yesterday brought another sombre reminder of the sacrifices members of this country’s armed forces continue to make in the effort to secure stability in the region. First Lie...

Saudi Arabia Loses a Voice of Reason - Bruce Riedel, Daily Beast

The kingdom has lost its steadiest diplomat—and its most clever problem-solver....

Egypt Is Caught in a Deadly Stalemate - Omar Ashour, Al Jazeera

"The hands of justice is chained by laws," said Abdel Fattah el-Sisi during the funeral of his prosecutor-general, Hisham Barakat. "Courts are not suitable for this moment …...

Want to Fight Terror? Take a Holiday in Tunisia - J. Marozzi, Spectator

The worst possible response to these horrible killings would be to abandon the country to the Islamists....

Egypt and Israel Must Exercise Common Caution - Haaretz

Despite the Egyptian army’s assertion that the situation in northern Sinai “is 100 percent under control,” Wednesday’s deadly series of terror attacks &ndas...

Egypt Proudly Posts Photos of ISIS Corpses - Nancy Youssef, Daily Beast

The army’s escalating military and media campaign to wipe out the terror group took a gruesome step Wednesday with two posts featuring dozens of contorted bodies clutching ma...

Hamas & Egypt: United Against ISIS - Adnan Abu Amer, Al-Monitor

Relations between Hamas and Egypt, strained since the 2013 ouster of President Mohammed Morsi, appear to be improving with Saudi mediation....

Britain's Agony and Anger Over Tunisia Massacre - Nico Hines, DB

Thirty or more of the victims slaughtered by a jihadist on the beach at Sousse were British citizens. As counter-terror measures are stepped up, the mourning has just begun....

Arab Spring's Success Story Under Attack - Colin Freeman, The Telegraph

The fact that there are still tourists to attack in Tunisia tells its own story. Ever since it became the birth place of the Arab Spring in 2011, the tiny north African nation has ...

Terror Attacks Across 3 Continents Kill Dozens - Ben Hubbard, NYT

Terrorists attacked sites in France, Tunisia and Kuwait on Friday, leaving a bloody toll on three continents and prompting new concerns about the spreading influence of jihadists....

A Saudi-Russia Energy Partnership? - Gaurav Agnihotri, Oil Price

What happens when two nations, that together account for more than fourth quarter of global oil production, begin collaborating on future energy projects?   Russian President ...

Why the Saudis Are Going Solar - Jeffrey Ball, The Atlantic

Prince Turki bin Saud bin Mohammad Al Saud belongs to the family that rules Saudi Arabia. He wears a white thawb and ghutra, the traditional robe and headdress ...

Egypt Goes Back to the Bad Old Days - David Schenker, American Interest

Terrorism is taking root along the banks of the Nile, threatening to plunge Egypt into another lost decade....

How Working Women Are Transforming Saudi Arabia - Der Spiegel

Every time Hanin Alamri sells a pair of shoes, it amounts to a revolution. Stilettos, platform heels, gold peep-toes -- all lined up on white shelves on the second floor of the Red...

The Saudis Go Solar - Jeffrey Ball, The Atlantic

The fact that Saudi Arabia, an ardent booster of fossil fuels, has found compelling economic reasons to bet on solar is one of the clearest signs yet that solar, at least in some c...

A Step Toward Conflict in Bahrain? - Jane Kinninmont, Chatham House

US President Barack Obama recently suggested in an interview that the Gulf countries have more to fear from internal political dynamics than from Iran. Yet the response of the US a...

Can Obama Even Decide Who Our Allies Are? - Dana Rohrabacher, WSJ

If the president must lead from behind, could he at least get behind someone who wants to win the war against Islamic extremism?...

Saudi War Struggles on Three Fronts - Madawi Al-Rasheed, Al-Monitor

The two contenders to the Saudi throne need signs of impending victory in their battles against the Houthis to secure their legitimacy to lead....

Clinton's Unofficial Sources Sent Bad Info on Libya - J Rogin, Bloom-View

Only days before Muammar Qaddafi was killed in Libya, Hillary Clinton’s confidante Sidney Blumenthal wrote her a personal e-mail passing on erroneous intelligence that the Li...

The Oil Rally Might Be Over - Nick Cunningham, Oil Price

The oil markets could be about to enter another round of soft prices....

U.S. Freezes Aid to Yemen - Julian Pecquet, Al-Monitor

The decision has dismayed some US-funded aid organizations. They say their assistance to the Arab world's poorest country is needed now more than ever as the Saudi-led bombing camp...

Why Yemen Talks Will Likely Go Nowhere - Bruce Riedel, Brookings

This weekend, the Houthis captured the provincial capital of Al Hazm in Al Jawaf province. They already controlled much of the province, but Al Hazm's capture consolidates their co...

Israel Still Mulling Iran Strike

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was to visit Capitol Hill Tuesday after sitting down with President Obama Monday to talk about Iran.Monday's discussion was important for ...

Syria Slams UN Draft Resolution

Inside VOA | Contact VOA News ...

UN Approves Air Strikes in Libya

A pro-Qaddafi crowd stormed a news conference given by Libya's deputy foreign minister at a hotel in Tripoli early Friday. The United Nations Security Council voted Thursday to aut...

Gaddafi Planes Bomb Rebel City

Libyan students attend a pro-Gadhafi rally organized in the parking lot of the Rixos hotel where the foreign press is staying in Tripoli, Libya, Monday March 14, 2011. Teachers ...

Middle East Upheaval Timeline

 First day of major anti-government action:

  • Tunisia: December 18, 2010
  • Algeria: December 28, 2010
  • Saudi Arabia: January 21
  • Egypt: January 25
  • Yemen: January 27
  • Morocco: January 30
  • Bahrain: February 14
  • Libya: February 15
Rank Country
48

Tunisia

(full country profile)
  • Average Life Satisfaction: 5.2/10
  • Population: 10.5 million
  • Political System: Republic
  • 83.8% of people feel personal safety*
  • 14.8% of people find others trustworthy*
49

Saudi Arabia

(full country profile)
  • Average Life Satisfaction: 6.1/10
  • Population: 26.1 million
  • Political System: Monarchy
  • 78.2% of people feel personal safety*
  • 37.1% of people find others trustworthy*
62

Morocco

(full country profile)
  • Average Life Satisfaction: 4.7/10
  • Population: 32 million
  • Political System: Constitutional Monarchy
  • 75.1% of people feel personal safety*
  • 58.5% of people find others trustworthy*
79

Algeria

(full country profile)
  • Average Life Satisfaction: 5.6/10
  • Population: 35.5 million
  • Political System: Republic
  • 39% of people feel personal safety*
  • 15.8% of people find others trustworthy*
89

Egypt

(full country profile)
  • Average Life Satisfaction: 5.1/10
  • Population: 78.2 million
  • Political System: Republic
  • 72.7% of people feel personal safety*
  • 18.2% of people find others trustworthy*
105

Yemen

(full country profile)
  • Average Life Satisfaction: 4.8/10
  • Population: 24.4 million
  • Political System: Republic
  • 65.6% of people feel personal safety*
  • 26.9% of people find others trustworthy*

Middle East from the Compass Blog

Seeing the Mideast Through a Cold W

While I took issue with Andrew Sullivan's idea that Vladimir Putin now "owned" the mess in Syria, ...

John Kerry's Priorities

According to Josh Rogin and Eli Lake, Secretary Kerry has spent "years" trying to nudge the Israel...

Saudi Arabia Expelling Handsome Men

Saudi Arabia engages in all manner of dubious practices: restricting a woman's ability to drive, c...

How the Israelis and Palestinians V

As President Obama stumps for a resumption of the peace process, Gallup has published some polling...

Kerry's Magic Words Will Keep Arms

Secretary of State John Kerry has a plan to stop Gulf state weapons from ending up in jihadist's h...

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Faced with its worst migrant crisis since World War II, Europe has many sensible options to deal wit...

Egypt turns to Russia to combat ter

MOSCOW (AP) — Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, making his second visit to Moscow in three...

2015: The year migrants streamed in

Europe is struggling with its biggest migration crisis since World War II, and the situation has got...

Greek coast guard rescues hundreds

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece's coast guard says it has rescued hundreds of refugees and migrants i...

Merkel backs emergency funds for Ge

Germany's government plans to double funding this year to help towns cope with record numbers o...