Geopolitics

Should the U.S. Withdraw Its Troops from Iraq and Syria? – Joshua Landis (part 1/2)
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Should the U.S. Withdraw Its Troops from Iraq and Syria? – Joshua Landis (part 1/2)

Joshua Landis is a historian and Sandra Mackey Chair and Director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma, as well as a Non-Resident Fellow at the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft. Landis presents the case for an immediate U.S. troop withdrawal in the Middle East, arguing that many civil society groups as well as militant groups in Iraq are strongly opposed to the U.S.’ military presence there. This is Part 1 of 2.

Strategically and Morally Bankrupt: U.S. Policy in the Middle East – Col. Lawrence Wilkerson
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Strategically and Morally Bankrupt: U.S. Policy in the Middle East – Col. Lawrence Wilkerson

Retired U.S. Colonel Larry Wilkerson discusses the Biden administration’s unconditional support for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s bombardment of Gaza and large-scale indiscriminate attacks on Palestinian civilians. He points to state-sanctioned torture and other unlawful acts committed by the U.S. after 9/11 and asserts that the Israeli government is responding to Hamas’ attacks in a similar fashion by wholly disregarding international legal norms. In doing so, Israel is putting its own population at risk, as well as collectively punishing the Palestinians.

BRICS: An Anti-Imperialist Fantasy and Sub-Imperialist Reality? – Patrick Bond (pt 1/2)
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BRICS: An Anti-Imperialist Fantasy and Sub-Imperialist Reality? – Patrick Bond (pt 1/2)

Patrick Bond, political economist, Professor of Sociology at the University of Johannesburg, and Director of the Centre for Social Change, discusses the recent BRICS summit in Johannesburg. The BRICS countries continue to call for greater representation within Bretton Woods institutions, while their opposition to US-dollar hegemony has been feeble at best. Patrick Bond lays out the complicity of the BRICS and soon-to-be BRICS+ elite in corruption networks as they profit from Big Oil and Gas contracts and accelerate environmental disasters. This is part 1 of 2.

Libyans Caught Between Warring Elites and Foreign Powers
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Libyans Caught Between Warring Elites and Foreign Powers

Anas El Gomati is the founder and director of the Libyan think tank, the Sadeq Institute. He discusses how so much of Libya’s history has been shaped by European colonial powers and other foreign states meddling in its affairs. On the flip side, E.U. developments and the rise of right-wing populism and racist anti-migrant sentiment cannot be disentangled from what transpires in Libya. In light of the ongoing fighting between rival government structures, how can the control of oil resources and state assets shift from elite strongmen to civilian bodies?

U.S. Interference in the Middle East – 20 Years Since the U.S. Invasion of Iraq – Col. Larry Wilkerson
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U.S. Interference in the Middle East – 20 Years Since the U.S. Invasion of Iraq – Col. Larry Wilkerson

Col. Larry Wilkerson speaks about how the media’s portrayal of the U.S. invasion of Iraq barely encapsulates the damage wrought by the U.S.-led “coalition of the willing.” He also addresses recent developments in the Middle East, including Israel’s increasingly belligerent policy on Iran, how the Saudi-Iran deal might end the Saudi blockade of Yemen, and the military significance of Israel being moved from U.S. European Command to U.S. Central Command.

Significance of China-Brokered Iran-Saudi Agreement – Trita Parsi
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Significance of China-Brokered Iran-Saudi Agreement – Trita Parsi

Saudi Arabia and Iran have agreed to re-establish diplomatic ties, with China showing itself to be a neutral and effective negotiator in the region. Talia Baroncelli speaks to Trita Parsi, the Executive Vice President of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, on how this shift in Saudi-Iran relations affects Israel’s posture toward achieving normalization with Saudi Arabia. Furthermore, the United States’ recent departure from its usual condemnation of Israeli drone strikes on Iran and its open support for Israeli belligerence signals a new dangerous policy that increases the likelihood of war with Iran.

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