Salman Rafi Sheikh

The U.S. keeps ‘Un-freezing’ Its Relations With Iran

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Despite its Gulf allies’ displeasure, the U.S. continues to ‘un-freeze’ its relations with Iran. While it appears to be a clear policy shift vis-à-vis Iran, it seems to have been greatly influenced by the developments taking place in the Middle East than…

Obama Went On a Mending Mission to Saudi Arabia

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Barak Obama’s visit to Saudi Arabia has happened at a time when political friction between the two states has reached a point where both have started to ‘threaten’ each other—hence, the need for bringing their ties back to ‘normal.’ While…

On the Revamped Saudia-Turk Strategic Alliance

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The apparent pomp and show of Saudi Arabia’s King Salman’s visit to Turkey carries a lot of strategic baggage as both countries prepare to open an entirely new chapter in the history of their bi-lateral relations, which have, historically…

Faсade of Obama’s Politics of Nuclear Summits

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The U.S. governments have always, as a matter of policy tradition, invoked the ‘nuclear question’ only selectively. Whereas the U.S. frequently tries to establish its global hegemonic position…

Israel Moves Towards Building an “Energy-Alliance”

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Amid the fast changing geo-politics of the Mid-East, Israel’s strategic manoeuvering appears to be aimed at raising the country’s bargaining position vis-à-vis not only some of its regional competitors such as Turkey and Iran but also its…

Russian Naval Base at Kuril Islands – a Counter to the ‘Asia Pivot’?

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While the United States and Russia continue to contest the future of Syria despite some reasonable progress achieved on the subject, their bi-lateral competition hardly seems to have eased down. Nor will it as global powers continue to…

Russian Withdrawal Means Different Things to Different Actors

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Recent days have witnessed some serious developments taking place with regard to international efforts at peacefully ending the war in Syria. While Russia’s decision to withdraw bulk of its fighting force from Syria does indicate…

Erdogan’s Infamous Quest for Fame

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While the Syrian crisis has been temporarily shelved through ‘cease-fire’, Erdogan’s own war for kingly political powers continues un-abated. Its latest manifestation came with Turkish state taking over Turkey’s top-selling newspaper Zaman…

Making sense of Turkey’s shift to Iran

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After experimenting with taking a belligerent stance on the Syrian question, Turkey seems to be shifting to diplomacy once again. This shift does make sense given that belligerence has cost Turkey a lot. On the domestic front, Turkey has…

How Europe is Playing the Saudia-Iran Rivalry?

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Weary of the House of Saud’s monstrous creation called ISIL and its reach to Europe, European countries seem to be inclining towards creating a ‘distance’ from Saudi Arabia. Or is it? The latest instance of this so-called ‘distance’ came on…

On Saudia-Turk direct military intervention in Syria

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Saudi Arabia’s offer to send ground troops to Syria, which is actually an offer diametrically opposite to the $10bn the international community has offered to provide ‘relief’ to the people of Syria, is likely to result in escalation of…

The US is Pulling the ‘Arabian String’

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While Russia and Saudi Arabia may have reached some sort of understanding regarding the production of oil, the Syrian question remains unresolved and it is likely to remain so unless the ‘production’ of proxy groups is absolutely cut…


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