While attempts to frame Algeria within the Arab Spring narrative have proved unrealistic, some observers thought the country’s May 10 parliamentary elections could present an opportunity for substantive political change. European and American officials lauded President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s invitation to international organizations to send election observers, as well as recently passed “reforms,” as progress toward democracy, likening these moves to Morocco’s top-down reform process enacted at the onset of the regional uprisings. But Algeria’s ability to avoid the upheaval that has swept North Africa over the past year has less to do with a proactive leadership and more to do [...]
Photo: U.S. President Barack Obama and Afghan President Hamid Karzai at the Presidential Palace in Kabul, Afghanistan, May 1, 2012 (official White House photo by Pete Souza).
On May 2, the United States and Afghanistan signed a new Strategic Partnership Agreement after months of negotiations. In the accord, the United States pledged to support social and economic development, provide security assistance and promote regional cooperation for 10 years beyond the planned 2014 withdrawal date for all U.S. combat troops from Afghanistan. Under the terms of the agreement, the United States will not seek permanent military bases in the country, but can receive access to Afghan facilities. In return, the Afghanistan government committed to strengthen accountability, transparency, the rule of law and human rights for all Afghans, male [...]
Amid the turmoil that has engulfed the wider Middle East over the course of the past year, Iran has been confronted with numerous challenges and some opportunities. Not surprisingly, the top priority for the Iranian regime remains its own survival. The main threats in this regard stem from external military intervention, internal unrest and increasingly, over the past year, strengthened international sanctions in response to its nuclear program. In order to counter these threats, Iran continues to invest in asymmetric, niche capabilities that play to Iran’s strengths while exploiting the vulnerabilities of its high-tech adversaries. The regime has also embarked [...]
Free Newsletter
Showing 2908 - 2920 of 2,920First 1 170 171 172