9 October 2017   Leave a comment

Iran is emerging as a central preoccupation of the Trump Administration, yet there is little sustained analysis of Iranian intentions or capabilities beyond flat assertions that Iran is “hostile” to the US.  There is little question that many of Iran’s current policies are at odds with American objectives, but there are also important points of agreement that have never been exploited:  Iran is as hostile to the Taliban in Afghanistan as is the US and Iran also shares concerns over the Wahhabist interpretations of Islam propagated by Saudi Arabia that seems to fuel many extremist groups.  Kenneth Pollack is a centrist on Middle Eastern issues and he has written an well-informed and nuanced interpretation of Iran’s foreign policy objectives that deserves careful attention.


US-Turkish relations continue to deteriorate as Turkey arrested two workers in the US consulate in Ankara on suspicion that they had ties to Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish cleric living in exile in the US and who is suspected of leading a coup against President Erdogan last year.  In response, the US announced that it would not issue any new travel visas from that consulate to Turks who wish to travel to the US.  TUrkey reciprocated by making a similar announcement to US visitors to Turkey.  The Turkish currency, the lira, fell on hearing the news, as did the Turkish stock market.

Posted October 9, 2017 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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