Comparative Conflicts: Ukraine and Syria

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by Mark N. Katz The conflict in Syria was very much the focus of international diplomacy and attention from the time of its outbreak at the onset of the Arab Spring in 2011 until the beginning of the Ukraine crisis… Continue Reading  

Will Putin Lash Out?

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by Mark N. Katz What a difference a few months make. During much of 2014, Russian President Vladimir Putin was riding high. Russia seized Crimea from Ukraine quickly and relatively bloodlessly. Putin was also able to help pro-Russian forces in… Continue Reading  

The GCC’s Security Dilemma

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by Mark N. Katz The states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)—Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Oman—are frustrated. Four of them—Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and the UAE—have vast quantities of petroleum. All of them… Continue Reading  

ISIS and the Bolshevik Precedent

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by Mark N. Katz All the major actors in the Middle East oppose the rise of the extremist group that calls itself the Islamic State (ISIS). In fact, ISIS has managed to incur the enmity of a highly diverse set… Continue Reading  

Will Sanctions on Russia Force Putin to Change Course?

Schiphol-Airport-Memorial-MH17-Ukraine

by Mark N. Katz Just a few months ago, everything seemed to be going well for Russian President Vladimir Putin in Ukraine. After the initial setback of Moscow’s ally, President Viktor Yanukovich, fleeing Kiev and being replaced by a pro-Western government,… Continue Reading