Arab Spring

Al-Qaeda: thinking local in regional turmoil spells trouble for the West

Al-Qaeda may not have regained the global threat potential that it posed a decade or so ago – at least, not yet. But its local and regional efforts have made it, in many cases, a powerful and entrenched source of instability. If left unchecked, such local and regional power can grow into something altogether more terrible.

Recovery from the Arab Spring will take a generation or more

Predictions that may take a generation or more for the Middle East to recover from the turmoil that the Arab Spring are clearly a sobering assessment. But they are hardly surprising given that there has been no significant improvement in people’s living conditions, that political tensions and repression persist and that levels of violence are on the up.

Syria and the wider crisis of international diplomacy

What we see in Syria now illustrates the inability of global leaders to lead and offer strategic vision of engagement with each other that would enable a more constructive and pragmatic approach to problem-solving. Not only does this harm great power interests but with a look at the ever worsening humanitarian crisis in and around Syria it also makes a mockery of the values they purport to defend.

Making a difference? The US decision to supply military aid to Syrian rebels

The White House announced that the US would start providing military aid to some of the rebel groups, but it remains unclear whether arming rebel groups in Syria will contribute to achieving the stated aims of US and UK policy: to save lives, to pressure the Assad regime to negotiate seriously, and to prevent the growth of extremism and terrorism.

read more