A Middle East Hat Trick for the President?

The three most dangerous issues that confront U.S. national interests in the Middle East, President Obama pointed out in his Sept. 23, 2013, speech at the United Nations, are Syria’s civil war, the nuclear stand-off with Iran, and resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Official White House photo by Pete Souza

With this week’s agreement to begin direct negotiations with Iran, and the joint U.S.-Russian deal to force Syria to destroy its chemical weapons, President Obama has significantly increased the odds of resolving two of them. And he has set the stage for finally ending the impasse on the long festering Israeli-Palestinian dispute.

Whether one thinks the turn of events in Syria and Iran were stage managed by the Obama team, or as many of his critics claim the lucky result of a muddled and fumbling U.S. policy, the fact remains that the Obama administration is on the cusp of engineering a major reset of the Middle East’s geopolitical landscape…

<Read Full Article on the Foreign Policy Association website>

“Enormous Consequences For U.S.” If its Foreign Policies Change: Huffington Post

August 26, 2013 – In the news, Iran, U.S & Canada, World – Tagged:  , , , no comments

Sarwar Kashmeri, a Senior Fellow-Atlantic Council, asked the U.S. to Pivot its Foreign Policy to Iran and added that: “Rapprochement of the U.S. Foreign Policy to Iran will have enormous consequences for the United States”

iran-usIn an article published in Huffington Post, the author says that the new order might mean an end to U.S. military presence in the Middle East and wrote: “There is one Muslim country in that region in which time spent by U.S. diplomacy can reap rich dividends: Iran. It is a country of 75 million people, of enormous geopolitical importance with borders that straddle countries that are of vital American national interest. It is a country that is destined to be a regional heavyweight and to serve as one of the region’s key balance wheels.”

 

“Iran’s new Foreign minister, Mohammad-Javad Zarif is a veteran diplomat and former Ambassador to the UN. He is a fluent English speaker with a PhD in international relations from the University of Denver. He, critically, has the support of the newly elected President Hassan Rouhani, who seems determined to break the nuclear deadlock with the West,” the author adds.

Kashmeri concluds that “It is time to pivot America’s Middle-East foreign policy from the futile quest of trying to influence the trajectory of Arab lands to Iran” and adds: “A rapprochement will have enormous consequences for the United States, the region and the world. Let’s pivot America’s Middle East foreign policy to Iran, now.”

Time to Pivot US Foreign Policy to Iran

It is time for the United States to stop spending its resources,
goodwill, and credibility in the futile quest of trying to influence the
trajectory of events in Egypt, Syria and the surrounding Arab states.
Leadership now requires that America recognize, no matter how much it
may wish it to be otherwise, that the Middle-East is in the midst of a
region-wide civil war that will re-cast the map drawn up some 80 years
ago by Britain and France to serve their colonial interests…

There is one Muslim country in that region in which time spent by U.S.
diplomacy can reap rich dividends: Iran. It is a country of 75 million
people, of enormous geopolitical importance with borders that straddle
countries that are of vital American national interest. It is a country
that is destined to be a regional heavyweight and to serve as one of the
region’s key balance wheels…

<Read Full Article on the Huffington Post>

The U.S. Should Give Egypt’s Military 48 Hours to Restore Civilian Rule

July 9, 2013    Sarwar A. Kashmeri

It is a truth universally acknowledged (my apologies to Jane Austen) that the removal of a country’s elected leader by its military is deemed a military coup. So while I agree with President Obama’s pragmatic refusal to so label the recent overthrow of Egypt’s President Morsi, this finesse of terminology had better be a temporary equivocation.

Should the Egyptian military continue on its present path of jailing Muslim Brotherhood leaders and running roughshod on the nascent Egyptian democracy, however flawed it may be, President Obama should publicly begin calling what just took place in Egypt a “military-coup” and give the Egyptian military 48 hours to produce a road map to restore civilian rule. (That’s the amount of time the Egyptian generals gave Morsi, the country’s first elected leader, to work out a deal with the opposition and restore calm to Egyptian streets.) Failing which U.S. military aid to Egypt should be cut off.

<Read Full Column on Huffington Post>