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As U.S. withdraws from Syria, some want its troops out of Iraq, too (Axios | Geneive Abdo)

As the U.S. begins to withdraw troops from Syria, some Iraqi leaders are now demanding the same for their country, even as ISIS is making a comeback.Read More

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Why Iran Might Restart its Nuclear Program

On Monday, a top security adviser to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei reported that last month American officials had twice approached him in Kabul with offers to renew nuclear talks. The adviser, Ali Shamkhani, denied their request and while US...Read More

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Iraq’s Intra-Shia Struggle Over Iranian Influence (The National Interest | Geneive Abdo)

Iranian-backed Shia militias inside Iraq, once viewed by many Iraqis as saviors who helped the country defeat the Islamic State, are destabilizing Iraq’s infant and fragile government and creating additional tension between Baghdad and Washington.Read More

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Stockholm deal brings partial peace to Yemen, but fraught with risks (Axios | Fatima Abo Alasrar)

The UN-backed discussions in Stockholm between Yemen’s internationally recognized government and Houthi rebels ended on Dec. 13 in a series of agreements that, if successfully implemented, will help alleviate Yemen’s humanitarian crisis and may ultimately pave the way for a...Read More

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Assad’s backers might have won him the war – but now they need US help (The National | Firas Maksad)

Russian President Vladimir Putin recently floated a proposal to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, envisioning a reduced Iranian military footprint in Syria – where Russia, Israel and the US all have interests – in return for the US scaling back...Read More

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A Saudi-Qatari Détente?

An invitation from the king of Saudi Arabia to his Qatari counterpart to attend the December 9 Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit in Riyadh has set the stage for potential progress on a protracted dispute that left the council deeply...Read More

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Iran’s support for the Houthis means it must have no role in Yemen’s future (Reaction|Norman Roule)

The Trump administration’s call for renewed peace negotiations to end the Yemen conflict, the subsequent decision to end refueling support to the Arab Coalition aircraft, and indications that the hitherto unreliable Houthis may actually attend negotiations have all ignited hopes...Read More

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Here’s Why a Yemen Breakthrough is Unlikely

Although peace consultations between Yemen’s internationally recognized government and Ansarullah, more commonly known as the Houthis, are currently under way just outside of Stockholm, Sweden, chances for a diplomatic breakthrough are slim.Read More

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The US Cannot End Yemen’s War Alone

Last week, two top US administration officials, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, urged all actors in Yemen’s conflict to adopt a cease-fire within thirty days.Read More

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Saudi Arabia Post the Khashoggi Tragedy

WASHINGTON – The killing of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi has left the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in its weakest diplomatic position since the horrific terror attacks of September 11.Read More

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