Monday Headlines

Time For A European Defense Union?

“Although the process of bringing European armies to a more structured cooperation and, where appropriate, closer integration will certainly be complex, the numerous crises facing Europe have made change possible. These crises also offer an opportunity to secure a more peaceful and prosperous future for the EU,” they write.

The Ethiopian Economic Boom May Be About To Bust
Robert Looney of Foreign Policy warns that Ethiopia’s economic miracle threatens to run out of steam unless the government introduces meaningful democratic reforms.

Saudi Arabia’s New Foreign Policy
For more than three weeks, neighboring Saudi Arabia has been conducting airstrikes in Yemen, including an airstrike carried out by the Saudi-led military coalition that set off a huge explosion on Monday morning, in what represents a new approach to foreign affairs that is less dependent upon the United States.

The new foreign policy adopted by the Saudi government is partly a consequence of Iran’s emergence in the region and Washington’s failure to acknowledge the gravity of the threat posed by Iran.

“The kingdom’s leaders have long argued that the U.S. underestimates the threat posed by Iranian ambitions for regional hegemony. They were especially frustrated that President Obama did not act more forcefully to remove Iranian-backed President Bashar Assad from power in Syria, including a failure to punish Assad’s government for using chemical weapons or provide substantive military aid to rebel groups,” reports The Los Angeles Times.

And while the U.S. must remain involved, the implications of Saudi Arabia taking bold action are great, say some scholars.

To be sure, there is a U.S. role in Yemen, in terms of providing intelligence information to the Saudis and supporting their efforts diplomatically. Yet given the scale of disagreements between the two sides on central issues such as how to intervene in the Syrian civil war and the nuclear negotiations with Iran, Saudi Arabia is no longer tethered to the American alliance. The implications of this for a region undergoing a violent transformation are momentous,” writes Ray Takeyh of the Council on Foreign Relations.

 

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