Middle East Focus

Middle East Institute

  • 44 minutes 29 seconds
    Deterrence Reasserted? Debating Iran's Missile Capabilities and Willingness to Use Force

    On this week’s episode, David DesRoches and Abdolrasool (Farzam) Divsallar, a Non-Resident Scholar with MEI's Iran Program, speak to MEI Managing Editor Matthew Czekaj on Iran’s April 13 missile and drone attack on Israel and what it reveals about both countries’ attack and deterrence capabilities. 

    Note: This conversation was recorded on Friday, May 3, 2024.

    Recently published and upcoming works mentioned in this episode:

    22 May 2024, 4:45 pm
  • 43 minutes 19 seconds
    Sudan's civil war and its regional impact

    On this week's episode, Jehanne Henry, Mirette Mabrouk, and MEI Editor-In-Chief Alistair Taylor discuss Sudan’s civil war and its regional impact. The conflict began on April 15th, 2023, when fighting broke out in Sudan’s capital of Khartoum between the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) under Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) under Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo (known as “Hemedti”). More than a year on, the fighting continues to rage and there seems to be no end in sight to the conflict.

     

     

    10 May 2024, 5:14 pm
  • 48 minutes 17 seconds
    Rethinking Democracy Ep. 2: What is the Rule of Law? With Thomas Carothers and Vali Nasr

    About the series: This is a critical year for the future of democracy. Half the world’s population will go to the polls in 2024, at a time when citizens in America and across the globe are losing faith in democratic institutions. We often view the rollback of democracy and threats to the liberal international order as separate problems, but in reality they are closely interlinked. Through a new limited podcast series, MEI’s Gonul Tol seeks to examine the interplay between democracy’s domestic and international foes as well as how to counter them.  

    In this episode: According to the World Justice Project, 2023 was the sixth year in a row in which the rule of law has declined in most countries. The rule of law is a cornerstone of democratic societies - promoting fairness and ensuring accountability. 

    Thomas Carothers and Vali Nasr join Gonul Tol to answer the questions: What is the relationship between the rule of law and democracy? Why is the rule of law challenged in places like the Middle East, and can the West help advance it? 

    30 April 2024, 2:55 pm
  • 45 minutes 20 seconds
    Opposition Upset Victory in Turkey's Local Elections

    On this week's episode, Murat Somer - Professor of Political Science and International Relations at Istanbul’s Ozyegin University - and MEI Turkey Program Director Gonul Tol join MEI Editor-in-Chief Alistair Taylor to discuss the main opposition party’s surprising victory in Turkey’s March 31 local elections. In what some are calling a “red wave,” the Republican People’s Party (or CHP) notched up victories in both major cities and smaller towns and villages, winning control of Turkey’s 5 largest metropolitan areas and 35 of its 81 provincial municipalities. 

    4 April 2024, 2:16 pm
  • 52 minutes 13 seconds
    Rethinking Democracy, Ep. 1: Why Does Democracy Flourish? With Francis Fukuyama and Paul Salem

    About the series: This is a critical year for the future of democracy. Half the world’s population will go to the polls in 2024, at a time when citizens in America and across the globe are losing faith in democratic institutions. We often view the rollback of democracy and threats to the liberal international order as separate problems, but in reality they are closely interlinked. Through a new limited podcast series, MEI’s Gonul Tol seeks to examine the interplay between democracy’s domestic and international foes as well as how to counter them.  

    In this episode: The world’s oldest democracy is in trouble. According to a study by the Public Religion Research Institute and the Brookings Institution, 75% of Americans believe that “the future of American democracy is at risk in the 2024 presidential election.” We often debate why democracies die because we assume that authoritarian power is the exception and democracy is the norm. But history says otherwise. 

    Francis Fukuyama and Paul Salem join Gonul Tol to answer the question: Why has democracy flourished in certain countries and regions and not in others?

     

    26 March 2024, 3:00 pm
  • 47 minutes 44 seconds
    The Evolving Conflict Between Hezbollah and Israel

    MEI's US-Lebanon Fellow Fadi Nicholas Nassar and Emile Hokayem - Director of Regional Security at the International Institute for Strategic Studies - discuss the changing and uncertain rules of engagement between Hezbollah and Israel, and the potential for war between the two following Oct. 7. 

    11 March 2024, 6:48 pm
  • 37 minutes 32 seconds
    Interview with Rashid Al Khalifa - Bahraini artist, collector and founder of RAK Art Foundation

    Director of MEI's Arts & Culture Program Lyne Sneige interviews HH Sheik Rashid Al Khalifa - artist, collector and founder of the RAK Art Foundation and a participating artist in MEI's current gallery exhibition "The Sea of Life: Modern and Contemporary Art from The Kingdom of Bahrain"

    6 March 2024, 6:37 pm
  • 36 minutes 29 seconds
    What’s next for Pakistan after election shock?

    On this week's episode Tamkinet Karim, Syed Mohammad Ali, and Alistair Taylor discuss the results of Pakistan’s Feb. 8 elections and where things might be headed moving forward. Over the past two years, Pakistan has gone through a particularly turbulent period, following the removal of Imran Khan’s government in a no-confidence vote in April 2022 — a time marked by political instability, intense polarization, a worsening economic crisis, and growing threats to internal security.

    *Note: This episode was recorded before the formation of a coalition government on February 20, 2024.*

    21 February 2024, 7:58 pm
  • 35 minutes 30 seconds
    Iran’s 1979 revolution and its resonance today

    On this week's episode, MEI Iran Program Director Alex Vatanka, MEI Non-resident Scholar Andrew Scott Cooper, and MEI Editor-In-Chief Alistair Taylor discuss the Iranian Revolution of 1979. A seminal event in the history of the modern Middle East, the revolution transformed Iran and its impact continues to reverberate across the region today, nearly five decades on.

    13 February 2024, 6:24 pm
  • 29 minutes 36 seconds
    Spotlight on US Syria policy

    On this week's episode, Director of MEI's Syria and Countering Terrorism & Extremism Programs Charles Lister and MEI Editor-In-Chief Alistair Taylor talk about US policy toward Syria. The deadly Jan. 28 drone attack on a US military outpost in northeastern Jordan, near the borders with Syria and Iraq, has drawn renewed attention to the US military presence in the area. This comes against a backdrop of regional conflict and escalation. 

    4 February 2024, 5:00 pm
  • 34 minutes 36 seconds
    The Gaza War's Regional Reverberations

    On this week's episode, President and CEO of the Middle East Institute Paul Salem and Director of MEI’s Conflict Resolution and Track II Dialogues Program Randa Slim speak to MEI's Editor-in-Chief Alistair Taylor about growing concerns over the potential for large-scale regional escalation as the Gaza war continues. 

    *Note: This episode was recorded before drone attacks that killed US soldiers in Jordan on 1/28. *

    29 January 2024, 6:53 pm
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