Middle East

Contrasts between the realism of Kennan and Obama

Was George F. Kennan a diplomatic historian rather than a diplomat who wielded influence in government circles? The answer must be in the affirmative because, despite the kudos he garnered as the strategist who advocated containing the USSR from the outset of the Cold War, Kennan faced consistent problems [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Saudi Arabia vs Iran: the real rivalry in the Middle East

Without it, nothing makes sense, and it has now emerged into broad daylight following the execution of the Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr alongside 46 other prisoners –43 of them convicted of al-Qaeda terrorist activities– and the subsequent riots and assault and torching of the Saudi Embassy in Tehran. The [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Paris: a war over an essential not an existential threat

Yesterday the French President François Hollande, before the two parliamentary chambers sitting together as Congress in Versailles, said that ‘France is at war’ and that the coordinated terrorist attacks in Paris have been an ‘act of war’ of the Islamic State (ISIS or Daesh). And indeed, we are involved [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Syria: thank you, Putin

Due to the authoritarian nature of his regime (a format now known as ‘illiberal democracy’, since he actually wins elections), to the way he annexed Crimea and intervened in the Eastern Ukraine, to his homophobia and other similar traits, Vladimir Putin is the object of widespread distaste in the [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Syria: tell me what your legal basis is and I’ll tell you who you are

In their approach to bombing Syria, the different major powers are by no means pursuing the same strategic or political ends, or even justifying themselves on the same legal basis. The latest is Russia, which has been accused by the US of ‘throwing gasoline on the fire’. Although one [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega The New Silk Road passes through Iran

The agreement between the six world powers and Iran is important not only because it will prevent a war or a nuclear arms race in the Middle East, but because it paves the way for reintegrating the country into both regional and global frameworks. But this does not mean [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Farewell Palestine?

Farewell to a Palestinian state? Despite his commitment in 2009, in his recent election campaign Benjamin Netanyahu backtracked and pledged that he would never accept a solution to the conflict based on two States. Now, following his electoral victory, a Palestinian State does indeed look unlikely, particularly given Netanyahu’s [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Europe: fewer Jews, more anti-Semites

Is anti-Semitism on the rise again in Europe, now that it has fewer Jews than ever? The latest outbreaks –in France the attack against a kosher supermarket in Paris and the desecration of Jewish gravestones, in Denmark the shootings in Copenhagen and, before that, attacks in Belgium– would seem [...]
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