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egyptphotoMayda Youssef
(Political Analyst based in Cairo, Egypt)

Copyright: Research Institute for European and American Studies (www.rieas.gr) Publication date: 24 June 2015

Introduction

Following the assassination of President Anwar Sadat in 1981, Mohamed Hosni Mubarak took office ruling under emergency law.
Mubarak ruled Egypt for nearly 30 years during which the population grew by 90% from 45 million to 85 million according to the UN. The vast majority of Egyptians live in the limited area near the Nile River banks, which is an area about 40,000 square kilometers, where the only arable land is found and competing with the need of human habitations...Read more

middle45Ehud Eilam Ph.D
(Analyst of Israel's national security, based near Boston, USA)

Copyright: Research Institute for European and American Studies (www.rieas.gr) Publication date: 7 June 2015

Israel, the United States and Sunni – led Arab states are worried that Iran might produce nuclear weapon, the Bomb. An agreement between the P5 + 1 and Iran about the latter's nuclear program would prevent Israel from attacking Iran. Yet if the latter ignores this accord Israel might attack. Sunni – led Arab states, mostly those in the Gulf could assist Israel....Read more

kurdistan15Nicholas Borroz
( Washington D.C. based analyst of energy geopolitics and investment strategies, specializing in Southeast Asia and the Middle East)

Egemen B. Bezci
(Doctoral Researcher in the University of Nottingham focusing on secret intelligence cooperation between Turkey and the West)

Copyright: Research Institute for European and American Studies (www.rieas.gr) Publication date: 31 May 2015.

A Mossad agent drinks coffee in one corner of the cafe, making small talk with Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps members the next table over. American soldiers, meanwhile, play cards with Turkish intelligence officers. Two Iraqi security officials walk over, one comments on the Americans' dwindling poker chips, then both sit down to watch how the hand plays out. This is the Iraqi Kurdish capital of Erbil, and this is precisely how the Iraqi Kurds want it to be...Read more

kurdistan29Gabriele Leone
(Security Analyst, RIEAS Research Associate)

Copyright: Research Institute for European and American Studies (www.rieas.gr) Publication date: 7 May 2015

Under what circumstances did the Kurdish question take its current dimensions? Since when and why it stands as such? What are the tools that have allowed it to extend? In an attempt to answer these questions we need to analyze the history of the Anatolian from the end of the Ottoman Empire to the present day. The end of World War I finds the pointing of the "Kurdish issue" which is used uses as a tool of execution for the implementation of the system of capitulation. Using this tool, the western states were able to create the situation due to which Kurdistan was snapped like a piece of bread from the neighbouring states... Read more (English) & Read more (Italian)

libyatodayMarina Eleftheriadou (Ph.D)
(Research Associate/ Senior Editor, Centre for Mediterranean, Middle East & Islamic Studies (CEMMIS)

Copyright: Research Institute for European and American Studies (www.rieas.gr) Publication date: 21 April 2015

The power struggle within the salafi-jihadist movement continues to stir the 'jihadsphere'. Al-Baghdadi's open challenge to the salafi-jihadi status quo peaked with his June 2014 claim to the Caliphate, which further gnawed the failing power of al-Qaeda that until recently was the dominant power in the salafi-jihadi sub-system. ISIS' recent attempts towards 'remaining and expanding' beyond the Syria-Iraq front, as its strategic design dictates, constitute a further escalation of the intra-jihadi power struggle that directly challenges al-Qaeda's unipolar claim to jihadi branding and franchise. The flurry of declarations of support and bay'ah (to al-Zawahiri or al-Baghdadi) has been dichotomizing the salafi-jihadi movement between loyal to al-Qaeda forces and the 'defectors' to the self-proclaimed Islamic State; thus, sealing the increasing bipolarity in the jihadi sub-system...Read more

kurdistan15Gabriele Leone
(Security Analyst, RIEAS Research Associate)

Copyright: Research Institute for European and American Studies (www.rieas.gr) Publication date: 4 April 2015

The energy supply continues to be a priority for politics as it did in the past century, except that in the new geopolitics of energy the techniques of hoarding are absolutely changed, as they need to adapt to a changeable consistency of the balance between states. The modernization of the vision is expressed by the tendency not to take possession of the places rich in hydrocarbons, but rather to establish such relationships that enable a shift from property to concession and from concession to the purchase of production...Read more  (ENGLISH)  and  Read more (ITALIAN)

yossialpherBook Presentation

Moderator: Bruce Riedel
(Senior Fellow and Director, The Intelligence Project, The Brooking Institution)

Featured Speaker:
Yossi Alpher
(Former Director, Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies, Tel Aviv University)

Copyright: www.brookings.edu (Brookings Institution, USA) Publication Date on RIEAS (www.rieas.gr) on 29 March 2015.

From the mid-1950s, the State of Israel sought alliances with non-Arab and non-Muslim countries and minorities in the Middle East. Israel's strategy of geographically and politically outflanking the hostile Sunni Arab core that surrounded it in its early decades became a pillar of the country's security policy. This "periphery doctrine" for countering Arab hostility faded with the advent of Arab-Israel peace in 1977. But it began to reappear after 2010: the rise of militant political Islam in Egypt, Turkey, Gaza, southern Lebanon and possibly Syria, coupled with the Islamic regime in Iran, has generated concern in Israel that it is again being surrounded by a ring of hostility. By looking at Israel's search for Middle East allies then and now, Periphery explores a key Israeli grand strategy. Written in an accessible manner for all, it provides a better understanding of Israel's role in the Middle East region and its Middle East identity... Read more

lebanon15Nizar Abdelkader
(General (ret), Political Analyst/Columnist in Addiyar Newspaper, Lebanon)

Copyright: Research Institute for European and American Studies (www.rieas.gr) Publication date: 5 March 2015

Introduction

On the tenth of July 2011, Israel adopted a maritime boundarie for its own exclusive economic zone (EEZ) creating an overlapping zone with Lebanon's EEZ sent to the United Nations a year earlier in July 2010. The maritime border dispute between Lebanon and Israel covers an area of 850 square kilometers. The significance and importance of this dispute is related to the discovery of important hydrocarbon resources in the Eastern Mediterranean basin. This new dispute along with Chebaa Farms raised political, legal, and economic issues between the two countries...Read more

uscongress27Oded Eran
(A senior research fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies, served as director of INSS from July 2008 to November 2011, following a long career in Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other government positions).

Copyright: The Institute for National Security Studies (INSS-no 669 March 4, 2015), Israel. Publication date on RIEAS web site (www.rieas.gr) on 6 March 2015

It is questionable whether the marginal effect that the Netanyahu speech may have on the current course of the negotiations with Iran justified the row, tension, and latest cracks in the personal relations between Obama and Netanyahu, as well as the danger of Israel becoming a political football in the US partisan rivalry between the Democratic and Republican Parties. To be sure, the Netanyahu Congressional speech affair is not yet over. There might be renewed attempts to legislate new laws that aim to limit the administration's ability to conclude an agreement; a refusal by Congress to lift sanctions, even if partially, if an agreement with Iran is reached; and a continuous debate if the negotiations end with no agreement. In either case a dialogue between the governments of Israel and the US will be necessary, and it is hoped that the strident exchanges of recent weeks will not prevent that from taking place.... Read more

tunis17Christine Petre
(Editor, Your Middle East)

Copyright: Research Institute for European and American Studies (www.rieas.gr) Publication date: 26 February 2015

Many have explained Tunisia's democratic success story by referring to the country's consensus seeking political climate. There are many factors behind this continuous compromise seeking policy, which continues to be at the core of Tunisian politics.

It was the 26-year-old Tunisian fruit vendor Mohammed Bouazizi's self-immolation on December 17 2010 that ignited a protest wave that would spread beyond the country's borders. However, it was only in the so-called Arab Spring's birthplace that the revolution not only ousted former President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali but also paved the way for a peaceful and stable democratic transition. Today Tunisia is seen as a success story, deemed by watchdog Freedom House as a "Free" country and labelled by the Economist as the only "fully democratic" country in the region. What is the secret behind the Tunisian success story, ask observers. One important element for the country's ability to avoid unrest is the country's commitment to political compromise and inclusive governance, which has been evident throughout the country's post-revolutionary development...Read more

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