The recent escalation of violence in Yemen underscores the terrorist challenge there. However, western policy will be unsuccessful if it conflates the international agenda of Al-Qa'ida with the local ambitions of Ansar al-Sharia.
Some kind of a union between Saudi Arabia and Bahrain was believed to herald the beginning of a wider Gulf Union plan. But this idea failed before it even began. While there is a united front against Iran, smaller Gulf states do not want to lose their sovereignty and identity to a dominant Saudi Arabia.
Though the perpetrators have not yet been identified, the latest terrorist attack in Syria suggests that the non-violent and insurgent strands of the uprising could both be overtaken by a campaign of indiscriminate violence.
Israel-Turkey relations have steadily deteriorated since the 2009 war in Gaza and have remained at an impasse since the flotilla incident. If Turkey wants to be a global player, both economically and diplomatically, it must become Israel's ally once again.
Eight months after Iraq’s deadlocked parliamentary elections, the new coalition government has finally taken shape with Nouri al-Maliki yet again at the helm. As the leaked US embassy cables show however, the current sectarian power-sharing agreement may further weaken the Iraqi government and strengthen Iran’s role in the region.