Since Somalia’s independence in 1960, its relationship with the U.S. has been—for lack of a better metaphor—on a roller coaster that travels up and down dangerous steeps and performs sudden inversions that turn everything upside down. In other words, due to lack of formal and sustainable policy toward Somalia, the U.S. has contributed to creating the thrill-seekers’ paradise by setting aside diplomacy and soft engagement to chase terrorists. For the past decade or so, counterterrorism has been the name of the game, as both Somalia and the U.S. struggle to reshuffle their allies and redefine their strategic interests.
In 2006, in partnership with the (more…)
By James Stafford of Oilprice.com
The rift between Saudi Arabia and Iran has quickly ballooned into the worst conflict in decades between the two countries.
The back-and-forth escalation quickly turned the simmering tension into an overt struggle for power in the Middle East. First, the execution of a prominent Shiite cleric prompted protestors to set fire to the Saudi embassy in Tehran. Saudi Arabia cut off diplomatic relations and kicked out Iranian diplomatic personnel. Tehran banned Saudi goods from entering Iran. Worst of all, Iran blames Saudi Arabia for an airstrike that landed near its embassy in Yemen.
Saudi Arabia’s Sunni allies in the Arabian Peninsula largely followed suit by downgrading diplomatic ties with Iran. However, recognizing the dire implications of a major conflict in the region, most of Saudi Arabia’s Gulf State allies did not go as far as to entirely sever diplomatic relations, as Saudi Arabia (more…)