The Impact of the American “Temperance” Strategy on the Middle East: The Biden Administration as a Case Study

The Middle East represents a pivotal region where great power ambitions collide amid complex domestic turmoil. As the United States recalibrates its regional approach under President Biden’s “Temperance” strategy, geopolitical realignments emerge with global consequence. This examination will analyze key dimensions of Biden’s Temperance strategy, its contrasts with Trump’s chaotic approach, early impacts on conflicts and partnerships, and implications for U.S. leadership. While shifts toward pragmatic restraint show some promise, durable Middle East stability requires addressing root causes in governance and pluralism as Washington embraces judicious diplomacy supporting shared interests.

Defining Biden’s Temperance Strategy

Upon entering office in January 2021, the Biden administration sought changes from Trump’s bellicose policies through a strategy dubbed “Temperance” by critics and proponents alike. This posture adjusts engagement on several fronts but does not fundamentally abandon U.S. leadership across the Middle East as some feared. Core elements include:

  • De-emphasis on military deployments and interventions in regional conflicts
  • Assertive diplomacy restoring key multilateral agreements like the Iran nuclear deal
  • Leveraging allies and partnerships both regional and global
  • Continued counterterrorism focus but reduced direct combat role
  • Balancing competition and cooperation with rivals like China and Russia
  • Democracy and pluralism promotion secondary to immediate stability needs
  • Pragmatism and consensus building over ideological demagogy

In contrast to Trump’s chaotic and belligerent style, Biden’s Temperance exhibits restraint, nuance, and calibrated rebalancing. It aligns with his wider foreign policy reset stabilizing relations after Trump-era turmoil. While realignments alarm traditional partners, the strategy shows prudent adaptation to Middle East complexities and American political constraints. However, gaps persist around long-term engagement and drivers of regional instability. Success rests on sustaining U.S. leverage while avoiding overextension and naivety.

Departing from Trump’s “Maximum Pressure” Approach

To contextualize Biden’s Temperance strategy, it is instructive to compare his posture with predecessor Donald Trump’s chaotic and bellicose policies in the Middle East. Despite some policy continuity, Biden’s regional reset aims restoring stability after Trump’s “maximum pressure” agenda aggravated tensions on multiple fronts, including Iran, Syria, and even allies. Adjusting stances became imperative, though questions remain on Biden’s constancy.

The foremost departure is Biden’s effort reviving the Iran nuclear deal after Trump’s unilateral 2018 withdrawal and imposition of harsh sanctions (1). Biden certified Tehran’s compliance in February 2021 and lifted sanctions hoping to incentivize further negotiations. However, the risks of concessions without guarantees split Western powers. Meanwhile Tehran accelerated nuclear enrichment and limited UN inspections. But restoring dialogue channels through sanctions relief marks a clear reversal from Trump.

Another major shift is in Yemen where Trump backed Saudi’s military campaign against the Houthis. While still selling Riyadh defensive arms, Biden ended offensive support, named an envoy, and reinstated humanitarian aid to the Houthis despite links to Iran (2). The moves place diplomacy over proxy conflict. However, with no resolution yet, Yemen remains a work in progress as famine threatens the population and Gulf security.

In Israel-Palestine, Trump’s strident support for Netanyahu’s expansionist vision and Israeli sovereignty across Jerusalem alienated Palestinians entirely (3). Biden seeks more centrist policies reviving the two-state framework and restoring Palestinian aid and contacts severed by Trump. However, continued failure restarting substantive talks reveals the conflict’s deep complexity persisting beyond U.S. postures.

While adjustment aims at stabilizing regional relationships, critics argue Biden’s Temperance risks reducing U.S. leverage and control across the Middle East’s complex fault lines. However, the strategy intends rebalancing burdens, not abandoning interests. Much remains to be seen in its impacts.

Early Repercussions of the Temperance Strategy

In its first year, Biden’s Temperance strategy yielded tentative repercussions across the region’s conflicts, partnerships, and U.S. posture. Some corrosive Trump-era provocations eased through renewed dialogue. However, stubborn conflicts and interests prevented breakthrough transformations. As events unfold, U.S. leadership appears partly revived albeit constrained by foreign and domestic realities. Further impacts should emerge measuring the strategy’s wisdom and dexterity.

Among the foremost Testing grounds is the Iran nuclear crisis, where hopes of quick reentry into the JCPOA nuclear deal stalled amidst Tehran’s accelerating enrichment, missile tests, and unexplained nuclear sites that breached its commitments (4). Israel’s covert attacks on Iran’s nuclear infrastructure, potentially with U.S. support, further jeopardize negotiations as all sides lose trust. However, avoiding military escalation remains a priority for Washington given exhaustion with Middle East wars.

In Yemen, Biden’s blend of aid and pressure secured modest de-escalations between the Saudi-led coalition and Houthi rebels, including a temporary nationwide ceasefire in early 2022 (5). However conditions remain desperate and no political settlement is secured. Iran’s increasing missile and drone support to the Houthis also risks wider war. Defanging regional proxy wars appears a persistent quandary.

The Israeli-Palestinian front saw no major breakthroughs, but renewed U.S. funding stabilized relations with the Palestinian Authority and Jordan while demanding de-escalation of violence by all parties (6). However, factors from Hamas’ power in Gaza to Israel’s political turmoil prevent substantive peace progress despite reaffirming the two-state principle. Muddling through with limited clashes reflects some success.

Across cases, Temperance eased certain Trump-era provocations through calibrated diplomacy but failed unlocking intractable stalemates so far. Much uncertainty persists in these fluid conflicts bisected by regional power rivalries. Sustaining engagement and judicious leverage remains key to securing U.S. interests.

Impacts on Regional Partnerships and Alignments

A further repercussion of Biden’s Temperance strategy appears in shifting regional partnerships and alignments. Trump’s transactional unilateralism often alienated traditional U.S. partners like NATO and Gulf allies. Biden aims restoring trust through dependability and close consultations. However, new complex balancing acts emerge with rivals like China and Russia. Strongmen partners remain central to stability while also undermining human rights.

With NATO allies like Turkey, engagement aims overcoming rifts between Trump and Erdogan over Syria, Russian missiles and Eastern Mediterranean disputes (7). Recognizing Turkey’s importance for regional access and leverage is vital, if limiting criticism of democratic backsliding. Similarly in the Gulf, Trump’s unilateralism bred mistrust with key Arab partners that Biden works to dispel through direct dialogue and military support. However, rights issues around Yemen and Khashoggi arise.

A trickier balancing act unfolds with rivals like China and Russia, whom Trump confronted aggressively at times stoking turmoil. Under Temperance, Biden maintains U.S. deterrence but seeks selective cooperation on shared aims like counterterrorism and non-proliferation (8). This “coopetition” preserves vital strategic space for U.S. leadership. However, growing Chinese and Russian regional clout appears a lingering reality as well.

Finally, leveraging partnerships with Iraq, Egypt, and Jordan remains vital for U.S. counterterrorism efforts though cooperation remains transactional and their governance models conflict with America’s democratic ideals. Overall, Biden’s Temperance wisely calibrates diverse partnerships old and new. But sustaining collective gains without compromising U.S. interests and values requires constant diplomatic dexterity.

Impacts on Perceptions of U.S. Leadership and Commitment

A fourth notable impact of Biden’s Temperance strategy centers on perceptions of U.S. leadership and commitment in the region. Trump’s unilateral policies increasingly alienated partners and ceded space to Russia and China. Biden aims restoring credible U.S. leadership but skepticism lingers on priorities like Asia. Communicating continued regional investment and engagement proves pivotal to upholding the post-Cold War order.

Despite Biden’s assurances, many Gulf nations remain uneasy on U.S. staying power and readiness to contain Iran, with some actively hedging through outreach to China and Russia (9). Israel also worries declining bipartisan support given political divisions in Washington. Proving U.S dependability appears imperative to retain partners, yet domestic realities constrain overseas commitments.

Meanwhile, critics contend Biden’s democracy agenda took a backseat to hard security interests in Temperance, enabling Arab autocrats with limited reforms. Rights groups decry continued arms sales to the Saudis despite Yemen atrocities and the Khashoggi murder. However, U.S. leverage remains limited absent unified Western coercion. Biden’s strategic prudence recognizes political realities if angering idealists.

In total, Biden’s Temperance proves a challenging balancing act across the region’s web of interests, wary of overcommitment but cognizant of risks in perceived U.S. retreat. Signaling clear aims and steady partnership remains vital to sustaining leadership amid other powers’ ambitions.

Longer-term Outlook and Uncertainties

While still early, several unknowns and scenarios surround Biden’s Temperance strategy and its long-term regional impacts as situations evolve. Much depends on securing early progress to validate the reset before further shocks manifest. However, the Middle East policy arena remains entropy prone. Several pivotal risks and pivot points stand to shape Temperance’s future and test its wisdom against growing disorder.

  • Iran nuclear collapse or breakthrough?
  • Israeli-Palestinian clashes escalating?
  • Saudi-Iran proxy wars spreading?
  • Regional democracy movements resurging?
  • New Covid mutations restarting the pandemic?
  • Oil price spikes from Ukraine war or instability?

Each riskposes grave challenges and would alter regional calculations significantly. With myriad scenarios in flux, U.S. leadership must exhibit adaptability and sound principles.

Additionally, the Ukraine crisis shows events often arise unexpectedly and divert U.S. focus. Washington signaling sustained regional engagement will be vital despite distractions. Long-term, genuine pluralism appears the sole route to stability and legitimizing governance. Patience and encouragement of this moral arc of history offers hope if the U.S. again leads by example on liberalism.

While gains accrued so far, uncertainty remains high and U.S. influence limited. But through skilled statecraft and partnerships, Biden’s Temperance still shows promise guiding the Middle East’s transformation.

Regional Conflicts: Progress and Quandaries

Underlying Biden’s Temperance strategy is a complex set of regional conflicts where progress remains slow and solutions elusive. Issues from the Iran nuclear crisis to new threats like Yemen’s wars reveal both promise and enduring risks that continue testing U.S. leadership and wisdom. Focus on these significant conflicts illuminates the wider regional landscape.

The Iran Nuclear Deal Saga

The Iranian nuclear deal known as the JCPOA ranks among the most nettlesome foreign policy challenges across American administrations. After prolonged diplomacy, the Obama administration in 2015 secured the landmark pact between Iran, the EU, and UN Security Council members constraining Tehran’s uranium enrichment in return for sanctions relief. However, unilateral U.S. withdrawal by Trump in 2018 began a collapse into recriminations and re-escalation that persists as Biden seeks reviving the deal (10). Success remains pivotal yet complex given regional power balances and distrust.

At its core, the JCPOA aimed preventing Iran’s pathway to a nuclear weapon through caps on enrichment, inspections, and transparency in return for rejoining the global economy. By most expert accounts, the deal effectively closed this door for a decade or more through restrictions on centrifuges, uranium stockpiles, and weaponization activities (11). Verified compliance provided assurance against breakout. Secondary sanctions relief aided Iran’s economy and regional ties. However, neither missile development nor Iran’s wider conduct was covered.

After vociferous opposition to the pact, the Trump administration withdrew in 2018 while reimposing and expanding sanctions on Tehran (12). This “maximum pressure” approach sought regime collapse or a new deal limiting regional influence and missile programs, not just nuclear activities. In response, Iran gradually breached JCPOA limits on enrichment as leverage for sanctions relief but avoided outright weapons development. Escalatory attacks also plagued the region while talks stalled. Nuclear breakout risks rose again as both sides became aggrieved.

Upon taking office, the Biden administration prioritized restoring mutual JCPOA compliance through calibrated sanctions relief and Iranian limitations. However talks in Vienna have languished over sequencing dilemmas and Iranian demands like removal of terrorism sanctions (13). Mutual mistrust is also reinforced by alleged Israeli attacks on Iranian nuclear sites. However, avoiding military confrontation remains in both Washington and Tehran’s interests. The path for nuclear diplomacy stays open but narrow given distrust and pressure from regional allies. U.S. policy options remain fraught without easy solutions.

Yemen’s Multifaceted Turmoil

The complex Yemen crisis encompassing famine, war, regional rivalries and governance collapse represents perhaps the world’s most severe humanitarian emergency. Since 2014, battles between Houthi rebels and Saudi-backed government forces have killed hundreds of thousands and displaced millions in desperate poverty (14). While Biden ends direct U.S. support for the Saudi coalition, extracting America from Yemen’s conflict proves challenging given terrorism and sectarian tensions. No political settlement is yet visible.

Origins of the current war trace to the Arab Spring era when Houthi rebels expelled Yemen’s transitional government in an unusual alliance with ex-President Saleh. In response, Saudi Arabia formed a Sunni Arab coalition backing the ousted regime with a massive air bombing campaign and blockade. The war soon stalemated amidst destruction of Yemeni cities, infrastructure and heritage. Attempts at UN brokered ceasefires repeatedly failed as fighting morphed into a bloody proxy war between Saudi and Iranian interests.

Humanitarian impacts are nearly unparalleled with 19 million Yemenis food insecure and collateral damage devastating public health and education. Coalition airstrikes in particular account for thousands of civilian deaths including school bus bombings that sparked international outrage (15). Warlordism and separatism leave governance vacuums enabling Al Qaeda and ISIS footholds. The conflict appears a quagmire despite billions spent on weaponry.

Under growing pressure, the Biden administration cancelled arms sales and support for Saudi offensive operations while ramping up humanitarian aid (16). It also backed UN peace efforts that yielded the first nationwide ceasefire in early 2022. However, talks remain stalled with core disputes unresolved. Meanwhile the Houthis continue missile attacks into Saudi territory enabled by Iranian arms flows. Extrication is extremely complex.

At its core, experts see resolution requiring a Saudi willingness to accommodate partial power sharing with Houthis as legitimate local actors. Regional de-escalation between Iran and the Gulf also appears vital for stability. But the path ahead remains daunting and U.S. leverage limited. Without Yemeni-led reconciliation, conditions threaten spiraling into an intractable Syria-scale humanitarian emergency. U.S. pressure appears crucial but no substitute for local resolution.

New Israeli-Palestinian Status Quo?

The stalemated Israeli-Palestinian conflict represents a perpetual quandary marring the region and U.S. diplomacy. Since the 1990s Oslo process ended, peace initiatives by U.S. presidents have all floundered on bitter divisions around settlements, Jerusalem, refugees, and recognition. While a two-state solution remains consensus preference, realities on the ground erode its viability. Managing conflict appears the best currently feasible absent major concessions (17).

The fundamental barrier is asymmetry around recognition of each other’s legitimate rights and claims. Hardline Israeli governments refuse restoring 1967 borders, dividing Jerusalem, or admitting Palestinian refugees. Meanwhile Palestinian factions from Hamas to the PLO perceive Israel as an illegitimate occupier. Truly existential divides prevent compromise. Without answering these claims justly, “peace” remains hollow and unstable.

However, almost three million Palestinians now live under permanent Israeli control in the West Bank and East Jerusalem with 200 settlements deepening occupation of the putative Palestinian state. Gaza endures an isolation and blockade rendering its economy unviable. These conditions institutionalize Palestinian resentment and nurture radicalism. Israel’s democratic character is also threatened by permanent control over territories it denies rights.

Given these trends, managing conflict through limited clashes and preventing escalation to regional war may be the least bad option until conditions and leaders emerge to forge peace from shared humanity. This disturbing status quo at least contains violence but leaves justice denied. U.S. efforts face inherent limitations absent political will by the parties themselves for an equitable shared future. Realism must acknowledge present constraints.

Governing the Gulf’s Rivalries

A final pivotal arena is managing Gulf regional tensions as competing visions between the Saudi bloc and Iran breed proxy wars and sectarian fragmentation. Containing rivalry within diplomatic bounds while averting direct conflict represents a priority for U.S. policy. However Gulf leaders often perceive threats zero-sumly. Forging collective security remains complex but vital to regional order.

Ever since the 1979 Iranian revolution and rise of political Islam, the Gulf has been divided by a Saudi-Iranian cold war fought through proxies on religious and ethnic lines. Saudi promotes a Sunni Arab status quo against Iran’s revolutionary anti-Western posture. However, both display hegemonic ambitions over the wider region. Their rivalry plays out violently in Syria, Yemen and Iraq at enormous humanitarian cost (18). Great power competition between the U.S. and China also complicates Gulf relations.

While visions sharply differ, interests like energy, security and Islamic values offer some common ground. Avoiding direct war is imperative given the economic and human costs. Creative diplomacy can balance Iran’s role regionally within limits and mechanisms that satisfy Gulf concerns. Shared early warning systems and arms control measures to avoid miscalculation are feasible steps. Regional dialogue formats like the OSCE offer inspiration (19). Thawing hostility respites for selective cooperation.

However, the U.S. possesses only limited ability to shape Gulf rivalries directly. They arise from local identities and power dynamics. Still America can lead by example emphasizing interdependence and pluralism over zero-sum antagonism. Imperatives like energy security and counterterrorism require selective collaboration with rivals amid competition. Reframing Gulf security as a shared challenge for compatible societies, not clashing civilizations, represents the wisest U.S. posture for stability.

New External Actors: Opportunities and Risks

Biden’s Temperance strategy unfolds against a Middle Eastern landscape seeing new external powers exert growing influence. China and Russia have expanded regional ties through trade, arms sales and diplomacy.

activities present both opportunities and risks Washington must astutely balance. Managing greater multipolarity drives nuanced engagement amid enduring U.S. leadership.

China’s Economic and Strategic Rise

China’s growing regional clout wields both economic and strategic dimensions that require dexterous U.S. policies mixes cooperation and competition. As its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) expands Middle East infrastructure links, Washington must effectively uphold its own regional economic vision (20). Joint ventures in priority sectors may be feasible, while preventing Chinese dominance. A nuanced “coopetition” approach suits the complex realities.

Regionally, China seeks stable energy supplies, counterterrorism cooperation, and infrastructure exports by state firms (21). Chinese military facilities in Djibouti and port investments like Haifa raise U.S. concerns about a future naval foothold. However, China’s activities remain far smaller than the U.S. regional footprint. Its firms also pursue commercial deals without imposing political conditions, in contrast to Western aid.

Coexistence remains imperative to avert a destabilizing new Cold War. Joint infrastructure development in conflict zones like Yemen may align interests. Washington and Beijing also share aims against terrorism and nuclear proliferation regionally. Tactical collaboration where interests permit remains wise policy, signaling maturity. The Middle East resists binary choices between West and East.

Yet the U.S. must also balance regional economic statecraft, upholding alternatives to predatory Chinese lending. Vigilance is required on technology dimensions like 5G network expansion and AI surveillance sales that could enable authoritarianism. Prioritizing local voices and civil society in regional dealings promotes sustainable development. With prudence and engagement, Washington can accommodate Beijing’s role while furthering U.S. values and vision.

Russia’s Resurgence in the Region

Similarly, an emboldened Russia has reentered the Middle East as a significant diplomatic and military presence that commands astute U.S. statecraft balancing cooperation and containment. Ceding regional sway to Moscow risks empowering its revisionism. However, engaging shared interests like counterterrorism and non-proliferation allows constructive footing for Washington to compete from. Russia’s regional resurgence demands alertness but not reflexive hostility.

Under Putin, an opportunistic Russia leveraged vacuums from Syria’s civil war to Libya’s turmoil to expand influence across traditional Soviet sphere (22). Arms sales, energy deals and diplomatic protection for clients counterbalances NATO. However, Russia’s ventures also breed quagmires given limited sustainable power projection. Russian mercenaries now prop up regimes in Libya and the Central African Republic.

In Syria, decisive military intervention since 2015 revived Assad’s regime against U.S. proxies and ISIS bringing Moscow regional prestige and bases. However, stabilization remains elusive with Syria profoundly broken. Constant insurgencies drain Russia’s capacity. Partners like Iran also complicate Syria’s future as a Russian client. Overextension risks blowback.

Accordingly, Washington should avoid driving Russia into a corner. Tactical hotlines and de-escalation mechanisms would reduce risks in Syria’s chaos. Joint outreach offers to disengage mercenaries from conflicts like Libya also serves stability. Reality compels productive if wary relations between nuclear powers. Demonizing Russia is counterproductive where engagement may socialize its power into cooperation.

Yet appeasement of military aggression must also be avoided. Bolstering NATO’s Mideast allies deters Moscow adventurism. Sanctions impose costs for malign actions. Supporting pluralism and accountable governance in Iraq, Lebanon and Syria fosters lasting stability. With astute diplomacy and red lines, the U.S. can accommodate Russia’s role while upholding regionalrules and ethics. There exists vast room for Great power coexistence amid competition in the Middle East.

Regional Actors and Local Dynamics: Keys to Sustainable Order

While great powers compete for advantage, lasting Middle East stability ultimately depends on constructive roles by diverse regional actors – from Gulf powers to Israel and Iran. Their actions and governance models shape outcomes as much as U.S. policy given local realities. Prioritizing engagement to reinforce interdependence and pluralism offers hope.

The Israeli-Palestinian Impasse

The frozen Israel-Palestine conflict remains a perpetual regional fault line that arguably only local actors can unstick through difficult compromises toward a just peace. While supporting moderation, the U.S. possesses limited leverage where security fears and contested identity run deepest. A truly open hearted process of listening and reconciliation holds the keys to progress. The parties must act for their people’s shared future.

Fundamentally the conflict persists due to crucial recognition gaps. Israel since its founding rejects acknowledging Palestinian displacement and diaspora claims as legitimate rights. Yet for Palestinians these stand at the heart of their identity and struggle. This impasse shuts doors on even incremental progress. Narratives of exclusive justice prevent compromise.

While mediation helps, political will remains the scarce ingredient only Israelis and Palestinians ultimately supply. With immense courage from leaders, the kernel for reconciliation may emerge through compassion and responsibility. Perhaps acknowledging history’s grayness paves ground for coexistence. Joining a shared future appears the sole durable solution if arduous.

The U.S. can aid the buildup of civic ties across communities and model pluralism domestically. But real leaders arise bottom-up. Policies must elevate human dignity and foresight. Through moral imagination, old wounds may gradually heal toward fraternity. But this tests faith severely amid enduring hatreds. The region desperately awaits prophetic voices.

Unlocking the Gulf Rivalry

Similarly, resolution of the pipeline GCC crisis that fragmented Gulf security since 2017 depends less on great powers than courageous local rapprochement. A feud driven by pride, ambition, and distrust requires swallowed pride and empathy. Through dialogue and symbolic acts, the rift may mend.

Originating in resentment of Qatar’s independent foreign policy and Islamist ties, the Gulf feud saw Saudi and allies impose a blockade on Qatar rejecting its external sovereignty (23). However, the breach failed forcing policy changes and instead harmed regional cohesion. Qatar relented little beyond tactical restraint. With honor at stake deadlock persists.

However, costs of division mount economically and for Gulf security amid common threats like Iran. Moreover, global criticism tarnished Saudi signals of strength. Substantive reconciliation now represents the wise path, if requiring leaders swallow pride. Mutual security and dignity invoke that plausible leap.

Small acts of rapprochement like resuming visa issuance, restoring travel, and cooperating on shared infrastructure projects can rebuild goodwill and habituate trust. Talks must also address ambiguous rights and responsibilities in GCC relations to settle the feud’s root causes. Accountability on state media vitriol is essential. Core issues around autonomy versus allegiance remain to be clarified. But many means exist to restore bonds for stability’s sake.

The region’s future requires this reaching across divides. With wisdom and courage, Gulf leaders may restore fraternity and build new understanding placing community over ego and rivalry. There exists hope in humanity still.

Building Toward a Stable Regional Order

Ultimately, crafting a Middle East order balancing sovereignty and pluralism requires the region’s leaders adopt reforms and inclusive worldviews reflecting popular aspirations. While supporting local voices, the U.S. must avoid perceived imposition from abroad. Models imposed wholesale often fail or corrupt. Patience for organic change allows progress withinframes of reference familiar to these cultural zones. Lasting stability evolves locally.

Anti-reform autocrats have long warned that opening risks turmoil or extremist capture given weak liberal oppositions. However, the Arab Spring showed vast numbers seek democratic opportunities, not theocracy (24). Where transitions channel constructively, moderate secular coalitions can emerge through organizing. Pluralism appears widely desired.

Pushing rapid elections alone often backfires amid mass unrest if institutions and norms aren’t first cultivated. But astute leaders can leverage crises for power sharing and reforms. Transition roadmaps require care and sequencing. Anti-corruption measures, human rights protections, decentralized governance, and civic education pave ground for sustainable open government.

America’s own current democratic fragility shows freedom requires ceaseless work and care. Patience and good faith aid organic change. Through policy creativity supporting local reformers, Washington can assist the Middle East’s courageous sacrifices toward representative order without stigma of imposition. The fruits of freedom beckon.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the early years of Biden’s Temperance strategy presage slow but significant recalibrations of U.S. regional posture stabilizing partnerships after Trump-era turbulence. Glacial progress characterizes attempts to resolve inherited conflicts in Yemen, Israel-Palestine and with Iran. However perilous disorder remains ever poised to undo gains. Sustaining security while acknowledging pluralism and human dignity as universal aims will determine America’s regional legacy.

Fundamentally, the Middle East’s future relies on its peoples developing a just social compact balancing stability and participation. Through moral courage and wisdom, blockages around history might gradually dissolve toward common humanity as the basis for order. While guiding prudently, America can illuminate the horizon of possibility without mandating the path. Patience and faith accompanied by pragmatic engagement offers hope amid the despairing present.

With relationships now steadied among traditional partners, deep engagement and demonstration of dependability must continue as new external powers exert growing influence. Signaling continued American commitment to Middle East security and development aims will remain vital amid myriad uncertainties ahead. By upholding collective interests and pluralism with humility, Biden’s Temperance may yet prove consequential in bringing pragmatic balance to a chronically combustible region. Much remains to be written.

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SAKHRI Mohamed
SAKHRI Mohamed

I hold a bachelor's degree in political science and international relations as well as a Master's degree in international security studies, alongside a passion for web development. During my studies, I gained a strong understanding of key political concepts, theories in international relations, security and strategic studies, as well as the tools and research methods used in these fields.

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