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Tracking militarists’ efforts to influence U.S. foreign policy

China, the new Mideast power; Profiles on Kristol, Abdelnour, Gaffney, AIPAC, and more.

FEATURED ARTICLE

China and America Jostle in the Middle East
By Richard Javad Heydarian

China is rapidly expanding its influence in the Middle East. Sidelined during the Cold War, Beijing now has both the economic wherewithal and the military muscle to be a force to reckon with in the region. The country is busy deepening its ties with regional powers, including many of America’s Arab allies as well as its regional foes, and challenging U.S.-Israeli dominance. What impact could this have on efforts to forge Middle East peace? And could the region become a battleground for a 21st century conflict between a rising China and a stagnant United States? Read full article.

 

FEATURED PROFILES

Ziad Abdelnour

A Lebanese-American investment banker closely tied to militarist advocacy groups, Abdelnour wants the United States or Israel to “annihilate” Hezbollah.

William Kristol

The Weekly Standard editor and Fox News pundit, Kristol has been busy since the election of Barack Obama supporting a string of new pressure groups aimed at promoting the same neoconservative agenda that helped shaped George W. Bush’s “war on terror.”

American Israeli Public Affairs Committee

AIPAC, “America’s pro-Israel lobby,” has been a major backer of sanctions legislation that some observers argue will hurt the Obama administration’s attempts to curtail Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.

Frank Gaffney

Gaffney thinks that the Obama administration’s new logo for the Missile Defense Agency, which features a crescent-like shape, fits a “worrying pattern of official U.S. submission to Islam and the theo-political-legal program the latter’s authorities call Shariah.”

U.S. Committee for a Free Lebanon

Since the election of President Obama, this neocon-aligned advocacy group has endeavored to paint itself as a centrist organization, “just the ultimate lobbyists and powerbrokers for a Free and Democratic Lebanon.”

Patrick Clawson

In a recent paper for the “pro-Israel” WINEP, Clawson argues for cautious measures in approaching Iranian factions about that country’s nuclear program.

 

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IRAN: U.S. Sanctions versus UN Sanctions

Efforts by Congress to pass sanctions on Iran could jeopardize efforts by the Obama administration to organize multilateral sanctions through the UN or negotiate a diplomatic solution with Tehran.

Failed Bomb Plot Tests U.S.-Pakistan Ties

The failed Times Square bombing attempt has highlighted the challenges facing the United States in trying to pressure Pakistan on anti-terror efforts.

The Israeli Exception 

North Korea and Israel have a lot in common, but partly as a result of U.S. policy toward them, one country is an official rogue while the other only plays one on Arab TV.

Whither the Proximity Talks? 

U.S.-backed proximity talks between the Israelis and Palestinians are scheduled to begin, just as a growing alignment of international sympathy for the Palestinian perspective of the conflict has started to emerge.

Iran Sanctions Push 

As midterm elections approach, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are eager to demonstrate their strong support for Israel, in part by arguing for “crippling” sanctions against Tehran.

 

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Featured Profiles

Update was slow, but still no lag in the editor window, and footnotes are intact.     This has been updated – Bernard Lewis, who passed away in May 2018, was a renowned British-American historian of Islam and the Middle East. A former British intelligence officer, Foreign Office staffer, and Princeton University professor, Lewis was…


Bernard Lewis was a renowned historian of Islam and the Middle East who stirred controversy with his often chauvinistic attitude towards the Muslim world and his associations with high-profile neoconservatives and foreign policy hawks.


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