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Op-ed

Hamza bin Laden likely groomed for a senior al-Qaeda role

Shehab Al-Makahleh Hamza bin Laden, the son of Osama bin Laden, appeared in a video broadcast by al-Qaeda’s ‘al-Sahab’ media channel in which he criticized Saudi Arabia and its alliance with the United States. This video raises many questions about the timing, the motives and future developments, as Hamza …

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Will Iraq’s upcoming elections be dead on arrival?

Shehab Al-Makahleh On December 5, 2017, Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi, announced that provincial and parliamentary elections will be held on May 12, 2018; yet, many domestic events and regional developments would delay the elections as the Iraqi community is undergoing many societal and economic as well as …

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Will Yemen’s sectarian rift continue to widen?

Shehab Al Makahleh and Maria Al Makahleh (Dubovikova) Peace and stability in Yemen is likely to succeed only when all major players and the five permanent United Nations Security Council members take honest and true measures to end the bloodshed in this poor country, which pays the bill …

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If US shifts airbase to Jordan can China fill the void for Doha?

Shehab Al-Makahleh Will the US move its major airbase in Qatar (al-Udeid) to another in Jordan’s Azraq city and will China replace the US airbase in Doha? A report in the US military’s daily Stars and Stripes claims that the Pentagon wants to pump in $143 million into …

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Sochi Summit: Is the Syrian crisis nearing resolution?

Shehab Al-Makahleh  What has been the outcome of the summit between the leaders of Russia, Turkey and Iran in the Russian city of Sochi? What is the significance of the timing of President Putin’s meeting with Bashar Al-Assad in Sochi on November 21? Has the path towards a …

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Syria: Between the American anvil and the Russian hammer

Shehab Al-Makahleh It looks like that the international community has taken the final decision to put to an end the seven-year war in Syria with intensive conferences in the pipeline in November and December to reach a political settlement that secure the return of refugees to their homeland. …

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Saudi anti-corruption drive, a decisive storm to restore hope

Shehab Al-Makahleh Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, with an ambitious program, has started an “internal operation decisive storm” against corruption and extremism with an “operation to restore hope” among Saudi young people who pin high hopes on his as a young king to lead the country. Mohammad bin …

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Demise of ISIS, new Syrian constitution and future proxy wars

Shehab Al-Makahleh  In light of the fact that ISIS will be wiped out by the end of 2017 in Syria and Iraq – as confirmed by Vladimir Shamanov, former Russian Airborne Force commander and Chairman of the State Duma’s defense committee – the Middle East will enter a …

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Iraqi leaders’ visits a prelude toward internal reconciliation, regional calculations

Shehab Al-Makahleh The visits of Iraqi officials to some Arab capitals in the past few months until recently with Iraqi Shiite cleric leader, Moqtada al-Sadr who paid a visit to Jordan on October 22, 2017 represent that Iraq is heading toward internal reconciliation before moving to playing a …

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