Summary: while the Yemen truce has largely held and there is hope it will be renewed, the war in Ukraine has exacerbated food insecurity with prices soaring for wheat and other commodities even as ordinary Yemenis, hit hard by rampant inflation, are already lacking the money to buy food.
Summary: as the war in Ukraine enters an ever more dangerous phase, MENA states continue to take a fence-sitting posture that keeps their options open and avoids annoying Putin.
Summary: despite the relative calm of the past month, energy markets remain mired in uncertainty with volatility only likely to increase.
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: the military that now runs the country is unprepared to cope with the food crisis caused by Putin’s war.
Arab Digest editor William Law welcomes back Andreas Krieg of the Defence Studies Department, King’s College London and their conversation focusses on the battle that liberal democracy now finds itself engaged in as its MENA partners play the neutral card while quietly backing their ideological ally Putin in his war in Ukraine. It is an existential struggle, one encumbered with a stark hypocrisy.
Summary: as the Egyptian president drives the country ever deeper into a massive debt swamp, he is capitalising on Saudi and Emirati fears of another revolution the keep the Gulf money flowing in.
Summary: attention-grabbing headlines notwithstanding, the UAE’s move to a corporate tax is unlikely to alter the Gulf state’s lucrative role as a tax haven while personal income tax still looks a long way off.
In this the 100th Arab Digest podcast editor William Law is in conversation with Aslı Aydıntaşbaş a journalist and a senior policy fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations. Their focus is on the remarkable volte-face of Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in the Middle East. An economic crisis and collapsing popular support have forced him into a major rethink and in the case of Saudi Arabia a significant climbdown.
Summary: with the closing of Dubai’s world fair questions are raised about its legacy.