The aggressive U.S. strategy has raised tensions in Iraq without creating prospects for a resolution.
Editor’s Note: Syria's civil war has many losers, but Iran is not one of them. Tehran backed its ally in Damascus to the hilt from the start of the civil war, and its ally survived in large part because of Iran's aid. Ariane Tabatabai of Georgetown explains the reasons for Iran's involvement and the strategic and economic benefits Tehran has gained.
Editor’s Note: Iran's support for Syria, presence in Iraq, and enmity toward Irael and U.S. Arab allies is the focus of most U.S. attention. Afghanistan, where Iran plays a major role, is often neglected. As the Trump administration weighs its options there, it would do well to recognize Tehran's ability to do harm. Ariane Tabatabai, my Georgetown colleague, explains Iran's complex calculus in Afghanistan and why the United States might find opportunities as well as dangers.
Editor’s Note: The Obama administration's nuclear deal with Iran remains one of its most important, and most contentious, foreign-policy legacies. Much of the controversy in the United States stems from the question of whether Iran might cheat, but Iran is worried that Washington might renege on its side of the bargain.
Editor’s Note: The Iran-Saudi rivalry has fostered instability throughout the Middle East, with neither side likely to emerge triumphant. This rivalry increases bloodshed in the region and hinders U.S. attempts to secure its interests. Ariane Tabatabai of Georgetown and Dina Esfandiary of King's College assess the problems caused by the Iran-Saudi rivalry and argue that dialogue now is both possible and necessary.
Editor’s Note: Of all the many uncertainties about Trump's foreign policy, the question of Iran looms among the largest. The Obama administration moved U.S.-Iran relations from abysmal to bad, and both Republicans and Democrats heavily criticized the Iran nuclear deal, the most important element of this limited rapprochement. Yet Iran is an important player in the region, and the Trump administration must carefully consider their first step if they seek to confront Tehran or continue limited cooperation.
Editor's Note: As the Islamic State is driven from Mosul, Iraqis and the the country's neighbors are wondering who will take the group's place. The Iraqi government is weak, and Iranian-backed Shi'a militias have proven a powerful force in the country. The good news is that they fight the Islamic State; the bad news is that they are often more loyal to Tehran than to the U.S.-backed government in Baghdad. Ariane Tabatabai of Georgetown examines the relationship between Iran and these groups, explaining Tehran's goals and the limits to its influence.