Summary: Iran sees opportunities as stiff Ukrainian opposition blunts Putin’s war efforts and forces him to scale back Russian military presence in Syria.
Summary: May’s parliamentary elections saw candidates for change emerge as winners and Hezbollah and its allies sustain significant losses so could this be the signal that the country’s long descent into economic chaos may finally be coming to a close?
Arab Digest editor William Law welcomes back Qatar University Gulf analyst Dr Ali Bakir to discuss what’s at stake for the region and beyond as the JCPOA talks, which appeared close to reaching the finish line, now seem bogged down in Vienna. What the Iranians see as a weakened US administration may allow them to drag the negotiations out and ultimately doom the deal, a scenario that could trigger a MENA nuclear arms race.
Summary: what seemed a certainty has now bogged down and the Vienna talks are at risk of stalemate with America’s Gulf allies finding themselves caught between a rock and a hard place, on the one hand worried that either the US will do a deal that gives away too much and leaves them in the lurch or on the other that a no deal scenario will further heighten their regional insecurity fears.
Summary: while avoiding uncomfortable or unrewarding topics Masrour Barzani talks a good game about solving Iraq’s woes but it is one that is short on detail and long on rhetoric.
Summary: when the Israeli foreign minister met in the Negev Desert with his counterparts from four Arab states together with the US secretary of state, most commentators hailed it as significant, which it may well be but for reasons other than those proclaimed.
Summary: failure by OPEC+ to boost oil output may bring a short-term revenue boost but it also risks reaping the proverbial whirlwind.
Summary: whether the Ukraine crisis justifies the current outbreak of bullishness over oil remains uncertain. But what it almost certainly does do is open up new opportunities for the majority of MENA’s hydrocarbons producers.
Arab Digest editor William Law is joined by Chatham House’s Renad Mansour. Their conversation begins with the impact of the Russian invasion of the Ukraine on Iraq and other MENA countries who may find themselves forced to take sides. They then explore the current challenges the Iraqi people face in a country where politically sanctioned corruption flourishes at a rampant pace.
Summary: as America continues to withdraw from the Middle East, China sees opportunities and has moved adeptly into Iraq with commitments to build infrastructure that will help get the country out of its energy crisis.