Analysis articles

Global data initiative : making the invisible visible

An estimated two billion people, or roughly 40% of the world’s population, are invisible: no formal proof of their existence, such as a birth certificate, is maintained in the country where they live and they will likely die without an official record as well. Many nations have systems that work well and almost go unnoticed […]

Saudi stock market cheers, but cannot take its eye off the ball

Wednesday was a good day all round for Saudi Arabia’s stock market. The Tadawul index surged to an 18-month high, 5.5 percent up on the day before, as investors reacted to the far-reaching changes in the Kingdom’s power structure, as well as the much-anticipated news that the country was being considered for inclusion on the […]

North Korea’s real strategy

North Korea’s quest for nuclear weapons is often depicted as a “rational” response to its strategic imperatives of national security and regime survival. After all, the country is surrounded by larger, supposedly hostile states, and it has no allies on which it can rely to come to its defense. It is only logical, on this […]

Washington sees a climate scapegoat in India

By accusing India of demanding “billions and billions and billions of dollars” as a condition for its participation in the Paris climate agreement, US President Donald Trump has ruffled what promised to be a close relationship between the world’s two largest democracies. After Trump singled out India in his speech renouncing the Paris accord, Indian […]

How populists win when they lose

Today, it appears that every single election in Europe can be reduced to one central question: “Is it a win or a loss for populism?” Until the Netherlands’ election in March, a populist wave – or, as Nigel Farage, the former leader of the UK Independence Party, put it, a “tsunami” – seemed irresistible. Now, […]

Analyzing OPEC’s mistakes since 2014

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is known for its massive resources: Last week, BP said the group holds 71.5 percent of the world’s proven oil reserves. But the 14-member organization is also known for its mistakes. It is hard to tell a group of the world’s biggest oil producers, which run state-owned […]

The Gulf crisis, the Muslim Brotherhood and regional flux

Part of the crisis that has gripped the Persian Gulf owes its existence to the deep-rooted religio-ideological rift that has long pierced through the otherwise “Sunni” world. While undoubtedly a result of a power struggle between the House of Saud, a traditional autocrat monarchy, and Qatar, a self-proclaimed “moderate” Arab state, Qatar’s support for moderate […]

An open-ended Afghan war can serve ‘America First’

US President Donald Trump’s reported decision to delegate the Afghan war to Defense Secretary James Mattis reflects smart thinking. The POTUS doesn’t have a military mind – unlike his predecessor Barack Obama. The decision to delegate the war to the Pentagon generals should have been taken by Obama eight years ago when the war party […]

The Arab world’s coming challenges

Fifty years after the Six-Day War, which marked the beginning of Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem and the West Bank, the Middle East remains a region in seemingly perpetual crisis. So it is no surprise that, when addressing the region, politicians, diplomats, and the donor and humanitarian community typically focus on the here and now. […]

Proposed North-South Transport Corridor not just BRI rival

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent visit to Russia saw the two sides sign several agreements. Among the more significant was a general framework agreement under which Russia will set up two more nuclear reactors – the fifth and sixth – at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in Tamil Nadu state. Quite unlike its efforts […]

How Democrats Can Stop Losing Elections

In 2016, the Democratic Party lost the presidency to possibly the least popular candidate in American history. In recent years, Democrats have also lost the Senate and House to right-wing Republicans whose extremist agenda is far removed from where most Americans are politically. Republicans now control almost two-thirds of governor’s offices and have gained about […]

The global warming boogeyman

Jean-Jacques Rousseau writes in The Social Contract, “Free nations, remember this maxim: ‘Liberty may be acquired but never recovered.’” Today’s environmental movement’s aim is the elimination of freedom through banning carbon emissions and fossil fuels – whereas real evil isn’t confronted. In 2005, as the movement was gaining steam, journalist Chris Mooney wrote a book, […]

Turkey’s position on Gulf crisis

Arab Gulf states accused Qatar of supporting armed groups and their regional rivals, and on June 4 imposed heavy sanctions, including closing land and sea borders, canceling flights to and from Qatar, and withdrawing their ambassadors from Doha. The US, which is a security provider and main actor in Qatar, gave mixed signals. President Donald […]

May’s failed gamble prolongs Brexit instability for Britain

Like her predecessor, British Prime Minister Theresa May gambled on a vote and it backfired spectacularly, resulting in significant destabilization to her personal position, her Conservative party and her country. Just a year ago, mainly to settle his party’s long-standing feuds over Britain’s membership in the European Union, David Cameron called a referendum on Europe. […]

The importance of the recent NATO Summit

Heads of state and governments of the 28 NATO member countries on May 25 held a summit in Brussels in the alliance’s new headquarters. One of the important decisions adopted in the meeting was NATO joining the global anti-Daesh coalition, in which all 28 NATO countries are already members individually. Its participation as an institution […]

Pakistan’s ‘war on terror’ falling short on two fronts

Pakistan’s upbeat claims notwithstanding, terrorism in that country remains very much alive both as a disruptive force and as an ideological narrative. This is evident from the way numerous terror outfits are still able to operate on social media, if not on the ground. The very existence of these banned outfits flies in the face […]

Minutes left to save the Arab world

What if all the Arab world’s destiny was being defined right at this moment, through skirmishes in obscure regions between paramilitary factions whose names are unfamiliar to the world, amid events people struggle to comprehend? What if the Arab world was on the verge of its most catastrophic strategic defeat in 70 years and nobody […]

Can the US and Europe work together?

The Atlantic is rough these days, as stormy disregard blows from the United States to Europe and back. After President Donald Trump attacked Germany’s trade practices, Chancellor Angela Merkel told a campaign rally in Munich that “the times we can completely rely on others are somewhat over” and that “we Europeans must take our destiny […]

China can’t lead Paris accord with Big Coal in CPEC

Mainstream media is talking about Beijing leading the UN Climate Change pact, since US President Trump had withdrawn from it. But, China is expected to construct massive coal power plants in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and Beijing remains unlikely to cancel them even at risk of losing a leadership role in the environmental movement. Leaders […]

Donald Trump’s historic mistake

President Donald Trump has announced that the US will no longer participate in the 2015 Paris climate agreement, the landmark UN treaty that many of us worked so hard to achieve. He is making a mistake that will have grave repercussions for his country and for the world. Trump claims he will try to renegotiate […]

A divisive policy at the heart of Middle East crisis

Both, the plan and the game, designed to break up the Arab world, have been going on without interruption for decades now. With the presence of western institutions, strategic schemes and concepts have been developed to divide the region into ethnic, religious, sectarian and tribal cantons. Within this context, we find it necessary to lay […]

The Paris climate accord stands – with or without the US

On June 1 President Donald Trump announced that the US would withdraw from the Paris climate accord, sparking probably the biggest global debate on the issue to date. Outrage from all quarters ensued. Several heads of state protested, US corporate executives such as Tesla’s Elon Musk and Disney’s Robert Iger withdrew from White House advisory […]

Donald Trump’s historic mistake

US President Donald Trump has announced that the United States will no longer participate in the 2015 Paris climate agreement, the landmark United Nations treaty that many of us worked so hard to achieve. Trump is making a mistake that will have grave repercussions for his own country, and for the world. Trump claims that […]