Issues Navigator

Global Challenges

Strategic Regions

Domestic Debates

Tag cloud

See All Tags

Tags

Most popular

All items tagged Iraq

 

Open Think Tank Articles

July 7, 2012 | Europe & Russia: Soft Power, Please

Steffen Buenau: To effectively support the ongoing transformation within Russia, Europe should put to use its most effective “soft power” tool: a relaxation of visa regulations. Such an approach is not only effective with regard to domestic transformation but will also help restore credibility in an area where Russian co-operation is crucial, namely, Syria.

... More

April 18, 2012 | The Future of Iraq: Warning Signs of Factionalism

Yasir Kuoti: The political landscape of Iraq is fracturing. Divisions are growing even more pronounced than before. Iraqi officials have exploited these tensions for their own gain. Unfortunately, the Iraqi government can no longer be relied upon.

... More

March 28, 2012 | Will Iran's Defensive Realism Policy Work?

Gökhan Tekir: To prevent a NATO attack on its country, Iran is seeking to expand its sphere of influence. However, in the long term Iran’s allies will not be able to maintain their hold on power because of domestic troubles. Such troubles leave Iran in the precarious situation of relying on unstable allies.

... More

March 16, 2012 | James Appathurai on the NATO Mission This Article contains Flash-Video

Editorial Team: Why doesn’t NATO have a good slogan? The NATO Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs and Security Policy answers this and more in a final set of your questions, including answers about post-Cold War relevance and the strength of the Article 5 guarantee.

... More

August 24, 2011 | EU Should Back US in Sanctioning Syrian Oil

Johnny West: The West has bemoaned the lack of democracy in the Arab world for decades. Now, as the slaughter continues in Syria, it is time for the West to back its values with action. The recent US ban on purchasing Syrian oil has a good chance of debilitating the Assad regime. Europe must do the same.

... More

November 30, 2009 | European Union, Get Serious in Iraq

Daniel Korski and Richard Gowan: The potential rewards the EU might reap from improved trade in Iraq are huge, but the risks of instability remain highly problematic. By coordinating efforts, both within the Union and with NATO, Europe will win gratitude in Washington and a fruitful market in Baghdad.

... More

November 23, 2009 | The US Needs Turkey for its Middle East Agenda

Brian Katulis: Turkey and the US need to coordinate their efforts in South Asia, Iraq, Iran and the Arab-Israeli conflict, towards common goals. In order to make progress on his ambitious policy agenda for the Middle East, Obama needs Turkey. To this end, improving US- Turkish bilateral ties is a first crucial step.

... More

November 6, 2009 | The Changing Face of Diplomacy

Stefanie Jennifer Tetenburg: In the post 9/11 era hard power has been priortised over soft power to deal with the ‘new’ terrorist threat. In this dissertation I therefore investigate whether traditional diplomacy is still relevant. I argue that traditional diplomatic tools remain important, but need to be complemented by new diplomatic tools.

... More

October 30, 2009 | Trial of Saddam Hussein: Success of Justice, or Set-up for Failure?

Natalie Catherine Chwalisz: I examine the consequences of the decision to make the Iraqi High Tribunal a domestic court-a decision which negatively affected its effectiveness. It analyzes the Tribunal’s success / failure in achieving not only a fair procedure, but also transitional justice in its broader sense.

... More

September 21, 2009 | Deadly Divide: Sunni-Shia Conflict Determines Iraq's Future

Urs Schrade: Sectarian tensions continue to threaten civil war with large Sunni and Shia Muslim populations throughout the Middle East, particularly in Iraq. The current war in Iraq will play a prominent role in determining the future of the Sunni-Shia conflict. The ethno-religious conflict will in turn determine the future of Middle Eastern relations and security.

... More

July 21, 2009 | American Success in Iraq Shuts Europe Up

Christoph Suess: If someone had said two years ago that the US would have largely withdrawn its forces from Iraqi cities by now, he would have been called naive. Nobody here in Europe believed that the Iraqis would be able to handle their own security so soon. Given that, Europe’s silence on the latest US move is suspicious.

... More

May 28, 2009 | Preventive War and the Erosion of the Westphalian Order

Djörn Eversteijn: In this era of international flux, state power and even state sovereignty are increasingly disputed, questioned and redefined - whether by international corporations due to the war on terror or by preventive war. The state-oriented world order characterized by the Treaty of Westphalia is up for grabs.

... More

April 6, 2009 | Will the Armenian Genocide Issue Shape Future US-Turkey Relations?

Marie Grunert: Ahead of his visit to Turkey, there has been much speculation as to whether President Obama would carry out his intention and recognize the Armenian genocide. In doing so, whilst he would be carrying out an intention stated in his campaign, it could have a lasting impact on US-Turkey relations

... More

March 6, 2009 | Time is Running Out

Jordan Michael Smith: In yesterday’s speech, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton described Afghanistan as “NATO’s biggest challenge”. NATO has agreed to resume high-level contacts with Russia on this issue, but President Obama also has a key role in ensuring that Afghanistan is transformed into a liberal democracy.

... More

February 23, 2009 | Europe and Iraq: A Re-Connect

Markus Drake: Europe has spent the time since it was split into “old” and “new” Europe avoiding engagement with Iraq, ignoring its large interests in the country and in the region. This, according to a new publication by the Heinrich Böll Foundation, must change. For reasons of moral obligation, if nothing else.

... More

February 5, 2009 | Playing With Fire: Arming Tribal Militias Won't Work

Abbas Daiyar: The US’ latest program to arm tribal groups in Afghanistan to fight the Taliban is based on flawed comparisons with Iraq. Prominent ethnic and tribal tensions will only flourish, entrenching instability and increasing bloodshed. The US and NATO must understand these realities and rethink the plan.

... More

December 17, 2008 | Obama Can Win Back the Arab World

Brian T. Edwards: Since the invasion of Iraq, young Arabs have become more skeptical of US intentions. As Americans are putting hope into the new administration, many in the Arab world have less reason to trust democracy. Obama’s ability to excite Americans puts him in a perfect position to inspire young Arabs to expect something from America beyond business as usual.

... More

November 19, 2008 | Is the Taliban a Terrorist or an Insurgent Organization? This Article contains Flash-Video

NATO Review: Ahmed Rashid, author of the seminal book ‘Taliban,’ talks to NATO Review’s Paul King about how terror, tribalism and the Taliban fit together in present-day Afghanistan.

... More

November 6, 2008 | "Country First" to Be Obama's Motto

Simon K. Koschut: President-elect Obama faces a tough challenge once he takes office. The world is expecting change from America, but they shouldn’t hope for too much, too fast. Instead, in countries like Germany, the question needs to be “what can we do for the United States?” Likely topics of discussion will regard burden sharing in Afghanistan and possibly even Iraq.

... More

September 16, 2008 | The US and UN Should Resolve Election-Law Tensions in Iraq

Sarwar Amin: The Iraqi Parliament will soon embark on a daunting task of re-deliberating on the controversial Provincial Election Law. The Kurds feel like they are being treated unfairly. The US and UN must help the process.

... More

September 15, 2008 | It is Time to Withdraw From Afghanistan

Bernhard Lucke: It is not lack of civil investment, but the occupation that is the problem in Afghanistan. The “war on terror” is creating terrorism instead of controlling it. We are getting used to eroding morals and rising brutality, a way which may lead to new big wars.

... More

September 11, 2008 | Obama and Biden: No Fundamental Change on Iraq Policy

Reidar Visser: US presidential candidates, Democrats and Republicans alike, continue to ignore the shifting political realities in Iraq. Obama and Biden consistently portray the principal dynamic of Iraqi politics as a struggle between Shiites and Sunnis, whereas the main front in Baghdad is between two essentially cross-sectarian coalitions.

... More

July 16, 2008 | Withdrawal from Iraq and Reorientation of National Security Priorities This Article contains Flash-Video

Barack Obama Speech: “I will give our military a new mission on my first day in office: ending this war. (…) Let me be clear: We must be as careful getting out of Iraq as we were careless getting in. We can safely redeploy our combat brigades at a pace that would remove them in 16 months.”

... More

June 4, 2008 | On Iraq, it's Time to Call Europe

D. Korski & R. Gowan: In Europe, a consensus is emerging that more should be done for Iraq. If Europeans satisfactorily align with US policies in the region and if the US makes the most of this opportunity, this could significantly revitalize transatlantic relations.

... More

May 29, 2008 | Iraq: Winston Churchill and Déjà Vu

James Cricks: We are indebted to Christopher Catherwood for doing the homework about Iraq and the West that current policymakers should be considering.

... More

April 6, 2008 | Why We Should Fear a McCain Presidency

Anatol Lieven: McCain’s promise to listen more to America’s allies in Europe needs to be taken with a grain of salt. Senator McCain is in fact a neo-conservative as can be seen from his policies on Iraq, Russia, NATO, and democracy building.

... More

March 20, 2008 | The Last Days of George W. Bush and the Old Ways?

Fouad Naji Maarouf: George W. Bush was a disaster for the US. A change of attitude and government would bring good change.

... More

March 18, 2008 | Iraq Five Years on: the Polish Perspective

Marek Swierczynski: Poland’s decision to join the “coalition of the willing” has left the military stretched beyond capacity, the society in serious mistrust of their leaders and perception of a joint effort for a good cause seriously damaged. It took 25 lives 5 years and 3 governments to rethink and withdraw.

... More

March 11, 2008 | Iran Just Won't Stay Isolated

Charles Kupchan and Ray Takeyh: Rather than continuing to pursue strategies which isolate and attempt to contain Iran, the US needs to follow the lead of its Arab Allies, practice diplomacy, and encourage regional integration.

... More

March 6, 2008 | New Moderate Centrism on the Rise in Iraqi Politics

Reidar Visser: While Western media has largely overlooked the rise of a moderate centrist force in Iraq, this new current deserves attention as it faces challenges from the Iraqi Presidency Council.

... More

March 5, 2008 | Polish PM Due In DC: Managing Image and Expectations

Anna Nadgrodkiewicz: When in Washington, Tusk will need to address the role of Polish troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, the necessity of easing visa requirements, and the proposed missile defense shield. Most importantly, Tusk should use his visit to build name recognition and focus on issues important to Poland.

... More

October 8, 2007 | Now Is the Worst Possible Time to Leave Basra

Reidar Visser: I criticize the British for their intention to hand over Basra to the Iraqi army as early as November. Competing Shiite parties have a strong desire to control the oil-rich region, and the potential for internal violence once the British leave is high.

... More

September 28, 2007 | Europe Should Help Iraq, But Not Follow US Lead This Article contains Flash-Video

Joerg Wolf: Noting the high stakes for the continent and its limited capabilities, European analysts suggest that Europe should pursue different policies than the US or make support dependent on more involvement in the decision-making process.

... More

September 25, 2007 | Europeans Want America to Stay in Iraq

Joerg Wolf: We asked European policy experts for their opinions on proposed ways forward in Iraq. Respondents from ten different countries provided some surprising results.

... More

September 18, 2007 | General Petraeus's Iraq: Before=After

Jan-Friedrich Kallmorgen: the only news from the White House and Petraeus findings is that any decision on American troop withdrawal is postponed: President Bush is betting it all on positive trends in Iraq. Should the situation improve, Germany too will have to do its part.

... More

September 18, 2007 | General Petraeus's Iraq: Before=After

Jan-Friedrich Kallmorgen: the only news from the White House and Petraeus findings is that any decision on American troop withdrawal is postponed: President Bush is betting it all on positive trends in Iraq. Should the situation improve, Germany too will have to do its part.

... More

September 10, 2007 | The Surge Rocks! This Article contains Flash-Video

Retired General James Jones: Positive trends on the ground could enable a shift in responsibility from Coalition forces to the Iraqi security forces.

... More

August 29, 2007 | Iraq: Who's Got the Best Plan?

The Atlantic Community Editorial Team: presents a comparative analysis of the most promising plans from policy makers and think tanks across the US. See all the strategies here, or download and print out a PDF with the full matrix of options.

... More

August 22, 2007 | Why America Wants to Iraqize Afghanistan

Thomas Speckmann: Iraq’s label as a “second Vietnam” for the United States does not hold up to scrutiny. Recent changes to US military strategy on terrorism— building infrastructure, winning hearts and minds—come straight out of the Bundeswehr handbook, and they’re working. So why not take them to Kabul?

... More

June 28, 2007 | Democracy Building: How The US Could Learn From Lawrence of Arabia

John Hulsman: I offer four simple lessons in state building from the great British officer. A respect for history could help keep America out of future misadventures like the present situation in Iraq.

... More

May 21, 2007 | How Anti-Americanism Is Conquering the World

Jan Ross: Anti-Americanism is the new global ideology, and it runs deeper than mere policy disputes. The urge to brand the US as moral and cultural scapegoat is driving Europe and the Atlantic alliance apart.

... More

Global Must Read Articles

May 10, 2012 | A Still-Strong Alliance

This essay examines transatlantic relationships over the past two decades and the reasons behind why the Western alliance has been able to survive despite predictions of demise. Particular emphasis is given to what the skeptics got right and what they got wrong, including Robert Kagan’s paper entitled “Power and Weakness.” Attention is also given to a new challenge confronting the Atlantic

... More

October 25, 2011 | US Retreats From Unstable Iraq

As Obama announced the completion of the Iraq War, doubts remain on whether any of the goals originally mapped out by the President have been attained. ++ Iraq remains volatile and unstable, the Iraqi government is looking increasingly authoritarian and the local military cannot provide security for the country. ++ Instead of using its leverage to negotiate a truly inclusive Iraqi government, the

... More

August 22, 2011 | "What Will Free Libya Look Like?"

The conflict in Libya has reached “zero hour”. ++ As rebels infiltrate Tripoli and celebrate Gaddafi’s imminent surrender, the “forward-thinking” Transitional National Council makes plans for post-conflict stabilization. ++ The most important task for the TNC is to ensure that all regions of Libya are adequately represented in the new government, whose seat could be moved

... More

July 25, 2011 | US Must Solve Domestic Issues First

In a world of diverse threats and diffuse power, the US must turn to a policy of “restoration” to “rebalance the resources devoted to domestic challenges, as opposed to international ones, in favor of the former.” ++ While an active foreign policy should continue to invigorate alliances, the US must be more discriminating in its military interventions abroad. ++ America

... More

October 26, 2010 | 'Helping Hand' Seen Behind Leaks

The latest releases by WikiLeaks have shocked the authorities in Washington and Baghdad. ++ The revelations contain official reports of widespread torture, arbitrary detention and killings by Iraqi forces with the objective of endangering remaining US troops in Iraq or planning the ousting of Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki. ++ Authorities from both countries have rejected these allegations.

... More

September 3, 2010 | Iraq: Leaving Behind Chaos

As US forces withdraw from Iraq, they are leaving behind a “security situation that is worse than it has been in years.” ++ Despite the official fanfare, there is little rejoicing, as the Americans hand over responsibility to the Iraqis. ++ Terrorists are increasingly targeting traffic policemen: For every day in August, on average five security officers have been killed. ++ The US

... More

June 24, 2010 | Dark Clouds Hang Over Iraqi Kurdistan

The recent rapprochement between Teheran and Ankara is manifesting itself in an increase of their activities against the Kurds in the North of Iraq. ++ “The Kurdish Regional Government has a hard time making its calls for calm and more respect of its territorial integrity heard.” ++ The Kurds suspect that Iran wants to promote a Shiite political takeover in Baghdad. ++ “A

... More

June 22, 2010 | Getting a Handle on Leaks

The recent attempt to prosecute a suspect in the WikiLeaks video posting on the Baghdad helicopter shooting incident demonstrates how difficult it is for the government to get a handle on classified information leaks. ++ The biggest problem remains the “inability…of the referring agency to identify everyone in the government who had access to the [leaked] information.” ++ The

... More

November 11, 2009 | Democracy Takes Root in Iraq

The passing of a recent election law in Iraq is proof enough that democracy has taken root against all odds. ++ The law, which allows for greater transparency and voter responsibility, was hotly contested and in the end Parliament barely managed to “thrash out a deal.” ++ Most importantly, it represents a turning point in Iraq’s political development as the US finally stepped up to taka more

... More

November 4, 2009 | The West's Double Standards for Iraq and Iran

Iraq’s approach of the French nuclear industry for help with the reconstruction of a reactor and its opening of discussions with the IAEA reveal the West’s double standards for Iran and Iraq. ++ In comparison with the West’s close monitoring of Iran’s every move, Iraq’s aspirations have provoked very little reaction. ++ This is remarkable as Security Council Resolution 707 forbids Iraq from

... More

September 15, 2009 | Syria: Less Carrots, More Sticks

Obama’s approach to shift away from the Bush policy of isolation and reestablishing dialogue with Syria proofed not successful yet. ++ Despite the good intentions, the current US Administration’s behavior has not convinced Damascus to change its ways. ++ Syria holds still main responsibilities in destabilizing the Middle East, particularly Iraq. ++ “If Syria’s current behavior in Iraq persists it

... More

September 14, 2009 | Iraq: The Withdrawal of the US to Decide the Future of the Country

In contrast to the events in Afghanistan, German media pays little attention to Iraq. The envisioned withdrawal of US troops by the end of 2011 will become a historical turning point with consequences for the entire region, Already, Iran is steadily expanding its sphere of influence and Turkey fears that the northern part of Iraq will turn into an asylum for Kurdish insurgents. A well managed

... More

August 26, 2009 | Iranian Spy Games Threatening Iraqi Balance

Leader of the Iraqi intelligence services Gen. Mohammed Shahwani has quit over Iranian spies row with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. ++ “Without the backstop of U.S. support, Iraqi authorities are now desperately vulnerable to pressure, especially from neighboring Iran.” ++ It is increasingly rumored that Tehran is responsible for bomb attacks and assassinations in the country. ++

... More

July 23, 2009 | Kurds vs. Arabs: Iraq's Next Civil War?

Arab-Kurdish relations in Iraq are at their lowest point since Saddam Hussein was in power. ++ The autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is steadily developing an independent oil industry in northern Iraq. ++ In Kurdish minds, the region’s ability to refine the oil it pumps is a vital step towards deepening its autonomy from the Arab-majority remainder of Iraq. ++ It seems that Iraq’s

... More

June 24, 2009 | Beginning the End of the US' Role in Iraq

Punctual US troop withdrawal is the crucial next step for Iraq. ++ Violence will be determined by Iraqi cooperation with the US and across ethnic and sectarian lines. ++ US forces should be able to help their Iraqi counterparts resist al Qaeda by providing intelligence, logistics assistance
and operational advice. ++ There needs to be a compact between Arabs and Kurds, as well as Sunnis and

... More

May 8, 2009 | Iraq Cannot Afford Any More Mistakes

Retaining the Iraqi army in 2003 and less punitive measures against former Ba’ath party members would have allowed the earlier withdrawal of US troops from Iraq. ++ This “alienated Iraq’s Sunni Arabs and opened the door for a strong al-Qaeda presence in Iraq”. ++ Treatment of Sunnis as potential enemies by the Iraqi government would be a further mistake. ++ As a result the Sunnis could “choose

... More

March 30, 2009 | Beware of the Bear!

The approaching G20 will also be the first meeting between President Medvedev and President Obama. ++ Recently, the US has shown increased willingness to reconstruct their relations with the Kremlin whose cooperation is much needed on the Afghan and Iraqi Dossiers. ++ Yet, the US ought to move with care; Russia is not only eager to maintain influence in its “near abroad,” in addition “Moscow also

... More

March 3, 2009 | Economic Crisis More Dangerous Than Terrorism

In his State
of The Union Address
in January 2002, George W. Bush warned us of the infamous “Axis of
Evil.” Iran, North Korea and Iraq were accused of harboring
terrorists, building weapons of mass destruction and threatening world peace.
Seven years later, President Obama is confronted with another similarly grave
“Axis.” This time, however, it is not linked to terrorism or weapons
of

... More

March 3, 2009 | Financial Crisis Constricts US Defense Budget

Recently arrived in office,
US President Obama has
announced an increase of 17,000 American troops in Afghanistan. Experts consider at
least twice this amount necessary for progress. At the same time US Defense
Secretary Robert Gates is realizing that the Pentagon will not be spared from
the effects of the financial crisis. Indeed, the highest departmental cuts in
expenditure are looming in

... More

February 27, 2009 | Don't Ignore History

Faced with a choice between staying and winning or withdrawing and ending the war in Vietnam, Nixon chose the former. ++ The outcome of his policy was complete failure. ++ Obama is now faced with a similar decision. ++ In choosing an exit policy for Iraq and deciding upon future policy in Afghanistan he should let history carry the day. ++ In this way he will avoid making Nixon’s mistakes

... More

February 13, 2009 | The Birth of Democracy in Iraq

The success of the Iraqi election shot down Washington’s contention that democracy in Iraq was a fantasy and provided stark contrast to the post-Saddam days when “the only communal or social ties […] were those of ethnicity and sect.” ++ In contrast to the last 6 years, Iraq now has a free press, political competition and secular politics which favor the US and leave Iran standing

... More

February 5, 2009 | A Herculean Task: Middle East Policy for the New US President

There is much more to the Middle East than Iraq, and US foreign policy must quickly widen its foreign policy focus in the region. A successful Middle East policy strategy must simultaneously address Iraq, Iran, Syria, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as well as renew diplomacy throughout the region. The Obama administration is advised to act immediately, appointing special envoys and beginning a

... More

February 5, 2009 | Iraq; America's Unexpected Ally

The US finds itself involved in most of the regional conflicts in the M-E. ++ When the US looks for a friendly face in the region it is confronted with hostile regional states (Iran), strategic liabilities (Afghanistan), and allies which speak of preemptive responses (Israel). ++ Amidst the havoc, Iraq emerges as a new strategic asset. ++ The success of the latest election in terms of turnout,

... More

January 23, 2009 | Iraq: Test For President Obama's Pragmatism

US troops need to withdraw from Iraq, on that the US and Iraq are agreed. ++ The 16-month withdrawal timetable ought, however, to remain modifiable should military experts decide that conditions are likely to deteriorate. ++ In any event, current improvements in Iraq suggest that a quick withdrawal is not as urgent as before. ++ Obama ought therefore to use his much talked about pragmatism to

... More

January 20, 2009 | Few Tears Shed Over Bush's Departure

Apart for the brief wave of popularity in the aftermath of 9/11, Bush has ended his mandate leaving Americans disaffected. ++ Among the numerous mistakes he made, one of the biggest was his unwillingness to open dialogue with political adversaries to forge durable consensus. ++ His “my-way-or-the-highway politics” was at the origin of much criticism, including his policy in Iraq. ++”It is

... More

January 16, 2009 | Rethinking the "War on Terror"

The 9/11 attacks created global solidarity in the fight against a common enemy: terrorism. ++ The response was found in the “war on terror” and sometimes justifies resort to force for the rightness of the cause. ++ However, “the issue is not whether we need to attack the use of terror at its roots, with all the tools available. We must. The question is how”. ++ A military response, as the Iraqi

... More

January 5, 2009 | Bush: Packing His Bags

President Bush appears comfortable with his legacy. ++ This includes the battle against Islamist terrorists, his executive order in support of faith-based initiatives, and an unsuccessful drive to reform Social Security - however, Bush notes that his efforts made it “politically safe to campaign on changing Social Security and then actually seek to change it.” ++ Bush also noted the importance of

... More

December 18, 2008 | It's Time for Japan to Pull Its Weight

“Japan’s near-total opposition to participating in its allies’ military struggles is no longer defensible.” ++ Having made an “easy transition to democracy” after World War Two and now enjoying economic success and stability, Japan has no justification for shying away from the same responsibilities as its counterparts. ++ “Robust Japanese

... More

December 11, 2008 | The Middle East: A Bastion of Hope

The Middle East has been revamped since 2001. ++ Iraq has been transformed from an enemy to a friend; “from a brutal dictatorship to a multi-religious, multi-ethnic constitutional democracy” and can no longer pursue its nuclear arms race with Iran. ++ The Lebanese are free from the yoke of Syrian oppression and now enjoy the fruits of the Cedar Revolution. ++ Challenges still exist,

... More

December 10, 2008 | Owing Security to Iraqi Interpreters

For months Iraqi interpreters were not allowed to wear masks to conceal their identities, although insurgent groups put enormous effort into identifying and killing them. ++ However, the security of US troops as well as American strategy depends on their knowledge. ++ They bridge the language gap but also “serve as cultural advisers, and make crucial introductions.” ++ The US must

... More

November 26, 2008 | Discontent With Maliki Shakes US-Iraqi Security Pact

Iraqi PM Maliki Iraq faces tough opposition today as his cabinet scrambles to find support for a US withdrawal bill. ++ “The opposition is about Maliki” said a US official. ++ A failure of the bill would mean a US withdrawal starting early next year, instead of ending in 2011. ++ Maliki has ruled out an extension to the current UN mandate for the US troops, which runs out at the end of the year.

... More

November 24, 2008 | US Misunderstands Iraqi Politics, Withdraws

Bush’s desire for a long-term military presence in Iraq beyond 2011 has been precluded by an agreement that embarrasses the US administration. ++ The Iraqi government forced changes to the document that leaves only a complete withdrawal. ++ US troops must leave city areas by June 2009 or sooner. ++ The deal went through only because Bush believes Obama would leave more quickly. ++ The refusal of

... More

November 20, 2008 | Losing Hearts and Minds

The lessons, as well as the history of Iraq, have been ignored and are now being repeated in Afghanistan. ++ The US and the UK have only succeeded to “reduce what should be one of the world’s richest countries to shambles.” ++ If there is one lesson from Iraq it is that “foreign expeditions undertaken in a spirit of jingoist revenge, with a crazed optimism and no strategic plan,

... More

November 18, 2008 | Hard Road Ahead for Obama

Obama is going to have a very hard time fulfilling his campaign promises. ++ The heavy financial burden of the market bailout will slow his progress, especially since his tax policy proposals don’t seem to even cover his planned health-care reforms. ++ Obama’s preference for negotiation and economic sanctions might not get results with Iran and N. Korea and Israel’s upcoming

... More

November 10, 2008 | Iraq: Bon Voyage?

By the end of this year the UN mandate allowing US troops to operate in Iraq will expire. ++ Both countries have agreed to a US withdrawal and G. W. Bush has announced that troops will leave by 2011, “leaving only military trainers and air traffic controllers behind.” ++ The US should ask for an extension of its mandate and American troops should keep operating until a final agreement

... More

October 31, 2008 | All Is Not Lost in US Foreign Affairs

While it is true that G.W. Bush has ruined his country’s finances, alienated many of its friends and botched the risky occupation of Iraq, not everything was a disaster. ++ Coaxing China into a rules-based economic system and seeking closer ties with India are two major steps. ++ Dashed hopes in Russia and the Middle East are not his fault and the “mad-dog” president wisely kept cool

... More

October 30, 2008 | Old Bush/Cheney Tricks in Syria

US interests, and its allies, were dealt a severe blow when US commandos attacked an alleged Al Qaeda operative in Syria, killing seven civilians. ++ The risks of such an attack include “sabotaging Israeli-Syrian peace talks, reversing the trend of Syrian cooperation in Iraq and Lebanon, and playing into the hands of Iran,” which undoubtedly outweigh any “fleeting tactical

... More

October 29, 2008 | Bush 3.0 - Enter the Twilight Zone

We are entering “the twilight zone,” the interregnum period between the election and the ascendance of the new president, where president Bush could act with menacing impunity. ++ The recent raid on Syria, which killed eight, is not an aberration from the Bush Doctrine, with some even considering it “no big deal” – but this attack might portend more ominous,

... More

October 23, 2008 | US Must Rethink its Approach to Iran

The financial crisis has dominated the US election campaign, marginalizing foreign policy. ++ But it is foreign relations, and especially ties with Iran, that will be at the top of the next president’s agenda. ++ This is not only about Iran’s nuclear capacity; stability of Iraq and Afghanistan, peace in Lebanon and ending the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are all inconceivable without

... More

October 22, 2008 | Status-of-Forces Agreement Looms Large

With the status-of-forces agreement at an impasse, policy makers are unnerved by the ominous signs in Iraq. ++ If an agreement is not reached by December 31, US troops will have to return to their bases; “Without legal authority to operate, we do not operate.” ++ Recent gains in Iraq were predicated on US security guarantees - without them, “tensions are returning with a vengeance.” ++ Kurds,

... More

October 6, 2008 | McCain Strong, Obama Weak

Osama Bin Laden called Iraq the “central front” in his fight against the US - he was right. ++ Obama/Biden only focus on the past; they still think invading Iraq was a mistake, a distraction from Afghanistan. ++ Their obsession misses the point: “The essence of being a good commander in chief is appreciating the connections among these theaters.” ++ FDR fought the Nazi’s before assailing Japan,

... More

October 2, 2008 | Economic Crisis Provides Cover for Military Blunders

By odd coincidence, or perhaps providence, $700bn is roughly the same amount of money squandered on Bush’s “preposterous war in Iraq.” ++ Ironically, the greatest economic crises since the great depression means Obama and McCain won’t have to discuss the “greatest military crisis in America’s history since Vietnam.” ++ This has provided the cover for a strange narrative developing in the US:

... More

September 24, 2008 | Stop Business as Usual for US Arms Sales

The US weapon industry is continuously growing, while more weapons are sold abroad ++ In Iraq, a host of factors, oil revenue included, has created a “loyal new customer,” namely the Maliki government. ++ Some say selling weapons to Iraq will reduce its reliance on Washington, but Pakistan proves that US forces can clash with US-armed adversaries. ++ Hopefully, the next US president decides

... More

August 19, 2008 | Maliki May Get "Difficult" for the US

There are voices among US officials that Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki became overconfident about his government’s ability to handle the security situation in Iraq without the US troops and that he wants to portray himself as the national hero who kicked out the US. ++ Domestically, Maliki’s Shi’ite-dominated government no longer depends on the US and seems to be more and more unwilling to advocate

... More

August 18, 2008 | Hobbled by Iraq

The war in Iraq eroded not only US strength but also its moral authority and sense of purpose. ++ Iraq strains the US army to such a extent that it is not left with forces sufficient to stabilize Afghanistan. ++ Moreover, critics of the US administration emphazise the lack of justification of the US-lead invasion and doubt that the US is still in the position to e.g. excoriate Russia. ++ But as

... More

August 15, 2008 | "Iraq May Be Stable, but the War Was a Mistake"

Recent progress in Iraq does not excuse the war as a whole. ++ It was good to get rid of Saddam Hussein, but the hasty invasion encouraged terrorism and hostility around the world and recent US criticism of Russia’s invasion now seems hypocritical. ++ McCain wants to use US successes to smear Obama, but Obama is right to reject dependence on hard power. ++ Even though Iraq was declared a

... More

August 13, 2008 | US Withdrawal in Sight for Iraq

Baghdad and Washington have set a tentative time limit for the withdrawal of US forces from Iraq in 2010-2011. ++ Both sides agreed to uphold a “declaration of intent,” which was signed last year. ++ Tensions are high over the new election law, as voting is expected to redistribute power in Iraq’s provinces. ++ If the legislation is belated, it would mean postponing elections until next year. ++

... More

August 5, 2008 | Only UN Can Bring Peace to Iraq and Afghanistan

The recent escalation of violence in Afghanistan and the calls to divert the US troops from Iraq make the question of ending these long and costly wars even more urgent. ++ There is only one organisation that can provide the leadership necessary to defeat the insurgencies and bring peace and stability to both countries: the UN. ++ US and its allies can never achieve these goals alone. ++ Only the

... More

August 1, 2008 | Iraq Has the Most Promising Future in the Region

There are many reasons to believe that Iraq is going to make it: violence is declining, US soldiers are turning province after province over to the Iraqi Security Forces, and planning withdrawals for 2009. ++ These developments should be acknowledged by the critics of the Iraq war, who underestimated the strategical importance of a constitutional Iraq. ++ Of course, a secure future for Iraq is

... More

July 31, 2008 | Fixed Date for US Withdrawal From Iraq a Mistake

US presidential candidates have been so busy campaigning they lost sight of the changes taking place in Iraq. ++ For the first time in years, the risk of a massive insurrection has diminished and there are realistic prospects for reconciliation among the Kurdish, Shiite and Sunni parts of the country. ++ Establishing a fixed deadline for the withdrawal of the US forces would not only rid the

... More

July 22, 2008 | Obama's Iraq Strategy Scarily Stays the Same

Obama has not retracted from his end-the-war stance which dates back to 2003 and was the key to his success over Clinton during the primaries. ++ But in so far as “full withdrawal” from Iraq, such as Iraqis want, never belonged to his aims, he has not changed policy. ++ His plans to maintain residual forces in Iraq and reserve “the right to intervene militarily,” reveal both his

... More

July 22, 2008 | US-Iraq Security Arrangement Serves Common Goals

Although the plans for a long-term security arrangement between Iraq and the US have caused a wave of criticism, such an agreement is in the best interest of both countries. ++ The main objectives of Americans and Iraqis are convergent: a stable Iraq with a modern oil industry, withdrawal of coalition troops from the region and Iraqi security forces that are capable of taking command. ++ In order

... More

July 10, 2008 | Iran's Hard-and-Soft Foreign Policy

Iranian diplomacy reflects pride, self-confidence, and a decreasing fear of the US and Israel. ++ Whereas Tehran’s hard-liners are using the argument of Western weakness to justify their rejection of compromise, pragmatic voices believe it is time for Iran to negotiate and “consolidate its gains.” ++ At present, Iran’s course is unclear: “even as they talk about diplomacy, the Iranians continue

... More

July 8, 2008 | Iraq: Asking the Right Questions to Find the Answers

The resurgence of the Taliban and al Qaeda demonstrates that the war in Iraq is dangerously diverting attention from the “war of necessity” in Afghanistan. ++ Rather than inflexibly planning to stay on or leave Iraq, candidates should ask whether “Washington would have more influence if it completely withdrew or negotiated a slower drawdown with the Iraqis.” ++ The chances chaos in Iraq could

... More

July 8, 2008 | We Can Thank the US for Failure in Afghanistan

The US failed to capitalize on its initial military success in Afghanistan and what seemed to be a finished matter has now redeveloped into a serious threat. ++ “America has only itself to blame” for the current situation. ++ It was distracted with problems in Iraq, failed to eliminate al-Qaeda, and gave insurgents the opportunity to regroup in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas within

... More

June 17, 2008 | US Deal Leads to Rising Resentment in Iraq

Iraq’s disparate ethnic groups are united in their opposition to the latest American political and military intentions for the country. ++ According to Bush’s plan, occupation of Iraq could be indefinite. ++ The president should leave the task of settling a deal with the Iraqi government to his successor and be content with an extension of the UN mandate, which is soon to expire. ++ His current

... More

June 17, 2008 | Iraq Starts to Fix Itself

Albeit reversible, the situation is improving in Iraq as the government gains confidence and increasingly asserts its independence from the US and Iran. ++ Despite the lack of jobs, clean water, and electricity, Iraqis are benefiting from high oil prices and can hope for a normal future. ++ Both plans for precipitated withdrawal and remaining indefinitely are foolish. ++ Swift diplomacy is now

... More

June 16, 2008 | Prime Minister Maliki's Misery

Al-Maliki wants good relations both with Iran and with the US but ongoing tensions between the two are putting him in a difficult position. ++ The Iraqi Prime Minister cannot afford to ruffle Iran’s feathers because of the large Shia majority in Iraq, which is loyal to Tehran, but Iraq also needs Western help. ++ The UN mandate for Iraq ends on December 31, 2008, and Iran has tried hard to

... More

June 13, 2008 | Bush Leaving Means no More Teasing

It did not take Iraq to spur dislike for Bush. ++ Yet by overstating his mistakes and cropping his successes, Germans acquired a sense of ease and superiority which they will lose when he goes. ++ The president’s catastrophic image made it possible to blame him rather than the terrorists for the situation in Afghanistan, dodge military commitments to NATO, and use Iraq as an argument to refuse

... More

June 6, 2008 | US Must Engage Syria Diplomatically

US cooperation with Syria - “not based on shared values, but shared interests” - should replace the policy of non-engagement to support Israel, isolate Iran, and ameliorate the situation in Iraq. ++ Waiving economic sanctions against Syria could provide huge leverage when addressing issues such as Lebanon’s right to sovereignty, Israeli-Syrian peace negotiations, and

... More

June 2, 2008 | An African Future for the Private Military

While the private military industry has benefited enormously from contracting opportunities in Iraq, these opportunities will at some point draw to a close and the industry will need new contracts. ++ Firms will likely return to Africa where private contractors hired by the US State Department already play an important role in many countries including Sudan, Liberia, and Somalia. ++ Given the

... More

May 30, 2008 | Iran's Cooperation is Crucial in Iraq

The current propaganda campaign against Iran is similar to that against Iraq before the US-led invasion. ++
Without Iran’s cooperation peace and stability in Iraq cannot be achieved. ++ The more immediate danger is not Iranian nuclear ambition, but the transformation of the Gulf into a theater of artificial Sunni-versus-Shia tensions. ++ Contrary to most Western news accounts, the IAEA

... More

May 6, 2008 | The Threat of the New Middle East

The old Middle East and the secular nationalism that went along with it is being replaced by a new, modern Middle East in which political Islam and anti-Western nationalism play a decisive role. ++ There is now a serious threat of “a confrontation between Iran and Saudi Arabia for sub-regional supremacy, and between Iran and the US for regional hegemony.” ++ The entire state system in the

... More

May 5, 2008 | Iran's Role in Iraq: Complexity and Confusion

According to the US, Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism causing heavy casualties in Iraq. ++ Iranian Hussein Shariatmadari denies this with the claim Iran shares Iraq’s interest in ending US occupation and armed militias. ++ Though the discovery of Iranian weaponry in Iraq suggests Iran is arming Shiite militias, Iranian authorities maintain they would sell weaponry to any party. ++ US

... More

April 29, 2008 | Visions of Foreign Policy Oppose Candidates

While Obama upholds transformation, Mc Cain’s intentions suggest a great deal of continuity based on American power considerations. ++ Obama emphasizes negotiation and the use of the US “potential for attraction instead of its capacity for duress.” ++ In practice, pressure groups’ and congress’ likely resistance to multilateralism indicate that Mc Cain’s

... More

April 25, 2008 | Reconciling US and Iraqi Narratives About the War

A recent poll showed that 70% of Iraqis believe US should leave because they are fuelling tensions. ++ Americans believe US should stay to curb sectarian violence and promote democracy. ++ Even Petraeus recognizes the solution is economic and political rather than military. ++ Breaching the gap of perception of the war requires a dialogue including Iraqi civil society, government, and religious

... More

April 22, 2008 | Improving America's Image in the Arab World

Recent Arab public opinion polls confirm a “gap between the aims of American policies and Arab public perceptions of the US.” ++ They also highlight that the US could improve its image by brokering peace between Palestine and Israel and by withdrawing from Iraq and the Arabian Peninsula. ++ While US policies are clearly opposed, middle ground could be found regarding democratic values and

... More

April 17, 2008 | Iran Could be a Partner of the US in Iraq

Contrary to the Bush administration’s claim last week, the main interest of Iran in Iraq is not to predicate on violence but to stabilize this country. ++ To prevent the possible future aggression from the Sunnites and to stop the agitation for Kurdish autonomy, Iran should not derange the unfolding democratic process. ++ To emerge as the leading power in the Gulf, Iran needs the withdrawal of US

... More

April 9, 2008 | Local Truces Bring Political Progress to Iraq

A top-down model of political compromise is inapt to restore order and bring peace to Iraq’s tribal society. ++ But now, a balance of truces between hyperlocalized clans and councils is generating optimism, political progress, and a drop in ethno-sectarian violence. ++ If they hold, these networks will prevent terror and genocide, and encourage the US to help with reconstruction, peacekeeping,

... More

April 9, 2008 | Iraq: The Situation has Changed, but not the Debate

Reduction of violence in Iraq “so great as to be undeniable.” ++
Yet partisan debate over Iraq continues. ++ McCain sees success within reach, while Clinton and Obama remain locked within the “this war is lost” prism, and suggest more resources for Afghanistan. ++ Neither party wants to hear Gen. Petraeus’ “sobering but firm bottom line” that progress is real, but also “fragile” and

... More

March 28, 2008 | Building a Relationship With Iran

Iran and the US are not doomed to remain eternal enemies. ++ The two countries share profound strategic interests such as stabilizing Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan; preventing the spread of Russian influence; and ensuring that Middle Eastern oil flow smoothly to Western markets. ++ A path towards comprehensive negotiations should be adopted as it is low cost and could yield extremely remarkable

... More

March 10, 2008 | Al Qaeda Will Not Rule Iraq

It is a misunderstanding of Al Qaeda’s nature and aims that leads to the fear it could implement an Islamic state in Iraq if the US troops were to leave. ++ Al Qaeda is a non-territorial global entity that antagonizes the West, disrupts existing conflicts but cannot coordinate enough key local actors so as to rule a state. ++ In Iraq, it is the Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds who play the central role.

... More

February 27, 2008 | A US Exit Out of Iraq Would Benefit All

A Democratic candidate, if elected, needs to end the war in Iraq as promised. ++ US withdrawal would not only allow the US to make progress on domestic issues, but it would also give Iraqis an opportunity to make their own deals and decisions and could create more regional support for Iraq. ++ The idea that leaving Iraq would be “surrendering to evildoers” and simply set the stage for genocide is

... More

November 30, 2007 | More US Marines for a 'Surge' in Afghanistan?

General James Conway of the US Marine Corps advocates the re-deployment of a large contingent of his men into Afghanistan, which would be extracted from the Marine presence in Iraq’s Anbar province, writes Gordon Lubald for the Christian Science Monitor.
In the absence of prospective troops from other countries, Gen. Conway argues it is necessary to improve the standing of the United States in

... More

November 28, 2007 | Forget Democratic Institutions. It's the Tribes, Stupid!

The kinship of tribes is key to building stability and establishing a balance of justice in areas like Iraq and Pakistan with both eroding and nascent political institutions.
The disorderly and anarchic conditions in these countries, says Robert D. Kaplan in The Atlantic, answer to the overlapping actions of multiple groups seeking to maximize their power. In these lawless places, it is not

... More

November 15, 2007 | The West Needs to Adapt to the Challenges of Open-Source Warfare

Iraqi insurgents are increasingly powerful because they constantly learn and adapt in the same way that the open-source movement revolutionized software development. Technological might has proved ineffectual in the face of this “open-source warfare,” writes Robert N. Charette in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers’ online magazine Spectrum.
Since more of these asymmetrical

... More

November 9, 2007 | Turkish Invasion of Iraq Would Set a Dangerous Precedent

Ankara’s belligerence threatens Iraq’s fledgling democratic institutions, and encourages other neighbors such as Iran and Syria to settle disputes within Iraqi territory, writes Jamaa Alatwani for the Iraqi newspaper Kitabat.
Cataloged by the European Union and the United States as a terrorist organization, the PKK finds opposition but also support among Iraq’s Kurdish MPs, as some remain

... More

October 12, 2007 | Full US Troop Withdrawal by 2013? No Promises.

The three leading Democratic presidential candidates all agreed it would be wrong to promise full troop withdrawal by 2013. However each remains determined to highlight their differing approaches to ending the war, write Jeff Zeleny and Patrick Healy for the New York Times. Speaking at a televised debate, Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Obama and Mr. Edwards were clearly divided on the issue. Edwards asserted

... More

September 27, 2007 | Europe + America = Geopolitical Sense: Europeans Rebuilding Transatlantic Bridges

Anti-Americanism in Europe has had its day, writes Stryker McGuire of Newsweek International. With Bush’s departure in sight and the gradual fading of contentions over Iraq, an amicable attitude towards the United States appears to be emerging with unlikely duo France and Germany leading the way.

However, where French President Nicholas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel both

... More

September 26, 2007 | France Backtracks on War Talk Surrounding Iran's Nuclear Program

French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner toned down the pitch of remarks he made earlier this week on the possibility of war with Iran, this time emphasizing negotiations over the use of military measures, report Katrin Bennhold and Elaine Sciolino for the New York Times. French Intelligence fears that Iran may produce a nuclear weapon before the projected 2010-2015 window.

Kouchner

... More

September 25, 2007 | Secret Iraqi Peace Talks Bring Unlikely Voices To the Debate

David McKittrick of The Independent reports on secret Iraqi peace talks held recently in Helsinki, where Ex-IRA commander, Martin McGuinness met in private with 16 representatives of warring Sunni and Shiite Iraqi factions. As a former militant who took bold steps towards peace in Northern Ireland, McKittrick is a legitimate role model in trying to convince the Iraqis of the merits of peaceful

... More

September 6, 2007 | Number Of Displaced Iraqis Soars After US Troop Increase

James Glanz and Stephen Farrell of the New York Times report that the military surge in Iraq coincides with a dramatic increase in the number of internally displaced Iraqis. Analyzing data from two different humanitarian organizations, Glanz and Farrell write that the number of IDPs has more than doubled to 1.1 million, up from 499,000 in February. Most notable is the sectarian division: Shiite

... More

July 30, 2007 | Cut US Military Spending By One-Third Without Sacrificing Security

John Cavanagh, Anita Dancs, and Miriam Pemberton at the Institute for Foreign Policy and the National Priorities Project argue that US security would not suffer if one third of the Pentagon’s $650 billion-budget were cut in 2008. Most of the savings would come from ending the US involvement in Iraq, closing several overseas bases, and dismantling of redundant and economically inefficient weapons

... More

May 13, 2007 | Dr. Matthew Levitt, Director of The Washington Institute's Stein Program on Terrorism, Intelligence, and Policy

Dr. Matthew Levitt is a senior fellow at The Washington Institute and founding director of their Terrorism Research Program (now renamed as above), established in the wake of the September 11 attacks. The Institute seeks to inject dispassionate, research-driven analysis—supported by fact and expertise—into the making of US Middle East policy. After a two-year tenure at the US

... More

April 16, 2007 | Guillemette Faure on Old European France

In the upcoming 2008 US presidential elections, it appears as though accusing one’s opponent of being French will remain an effective strategy. Guillemette Faure, author of La France Made in the USA, reports that four years after de Villepin voted “non” to the Iraq War at the UN Security Council, anti-French sentiment still hovers at 57 % in the US. Although the US and France have worked

... More

April 12, 2007 | Mitchell and Lahn on Asian Oil Companies and Global Energy Security

Chatham House researchers John Mitchell and Glada Lahn advise that although production abroad by Asian national oil companies (ANOCs) is small right now, its relevance to global energy security could change if ANOCs gain significant positions in Iraq or Iran. ANOC host governments are attracted to such Middle East investment by the lower requirements for transparency or diminished social

... More

Comments

October 15, 2011 | Dr. Straus, Firstly, Mr. Smyth's point re:...

September 7, 2011 | Dr. Lucke, it is not my belief that anyone...

August 25, 2011 | It seems what Saba and many others are more...

November 24, 2009 | I think Mr. Frost makes his case exceptionally...

September 22, 2009 | Really? You wrote: « In 1939 alone, both...

August 12, 2009 | Since when is honesty wrong? It takes a...

August 12, 2009 | Since when is honesty wrong? It takes a...

July 21, 2009 | Dear Mr.Lane, thank you for your comment....

July 21, 2009 | As an American living in Germany for several...

July 17, 2009 | Once a series of bad moves has created...

June 24, 2009 | Governments reflect in large part the nature...

May 23, 2009 | Gentlemen, as the security agreement requires...

February 10, 2009 | preventive "The policy of preventive war...

January 19, 2009 | Secretary Hutton is right in identyfying...

November 25, 2008 | During 2006-7, everyone, and I mean everyone,...

November 25, 2008 | Herr Lucke makes some good points, but Herr...

September 17, 2008 | The U.S. needs to address election law in the...

September 3, 2008 | Methinks that Mr. Joseph S. Nye is...

February 8, 2008 | Dear Ms. Alizadeh, you raise a lot of...

August 16, 2007 | I totally agree with Mr. Ben-Amis concise...

Community

Jobs / Internships

Call for Papers

Atlantic Events

Partners

User of the day

Ghassan  Dahhan
Ghassan Dahhan
Member since
October 23, 2009

Poll

Should NATO intervene in Syria?


DW-WORLD.DE


Europe
Europe
Europe




DW-TV Live DW-Radio Live