The Dhow: A Weekly Newsletter from AGSIW

Upcoming Events

Wednesday, June 17, 2015
12:00 - 1:30 pm
1050 Connecticut Ave, NW, Ste. 1060
Washington, DC 20036

PANELISTS Farah Al-Nakib, Diane Singerman
MODERATOR Kristin Smith Diwan

*A light lunch will be served*
Doors open at 11:40 am
Past Events
The GCC Economies: Weathering the Oil Slump?

On June 10, Jasim Husain, columnist on the political and economic affairs of the GCC for Gulf News; Garbis Iradian, chief economist at the Institute of International Finance; and Mahfouz Tadros, associate at Graffeo & Associates, joined moderator Kristin Smith Diwan, AGSIW senior resident scholar, for a panel discussion on the challenges and opportunities for the GCC states presented by the recent slump in oil prices.
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The Bridge blog
On to Geneva: The U.S. Tries to Kick Start Yemen Peace Talks

By Sigurd Neubauer

Despite Washington’s initial support for Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdulaziz’s air campaign against Yemen’s Houthi rebels, recent U.S.-Houthi talks in Muscat, Oman, may suggest a shift in U.S. policy that now prioritizes establishing a political process over continued military operations.

Washington may also have concluded that Salman’s unconditional support for the return of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi to power is no longer attainable as he is rapidly losing legitimacy among Yemenis for having publicly supported the air campaign from his rather comfortable exile in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Washington also fears that the very sharp focus on the Houthis is leaving Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) unattended, enabling it to extend its own operational reach in Yemen, as well as plan external attacks against Western targets.
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In the Media
AGSIW Senior Resident Scholar Hussein Ibish joined the Los Angeles NPR affiliate KPCC on AirTalk for a discussion on the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), and President Barack Obama’s decision to deploy 450 additional U.S. military advisors to Iraq. AirTalk host Patt Morrison asked how U.S. presidential candidates are approaching involvement in Iraq. Ibish noted a range of Republican candidates are attacking the Obama administration from a hawkish perspective, saying it is not aggressive enough in the battle against ISIL. At the same time, he noted, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton is perhaps slightly more hawkish than the president, particularly on Syria.
Ahead of U.N.-brokered peace talks on Yemen, AGSIW Non-Resident Fellow Sigurd Neubauer spoke with the Middle East Eye about U.S. talks with Houthi leaders in Oman at the end of May. He said, "Faced with an expansion of AQAP, a growing humanitarian toll and the limited successes of Saudi’s anti-Houthi air campaign, the US has started talking to the Houthis and is pushing more heavily for a negotiated peace, while remaining committed to Saudi security."

Neubauer additionally spoke with Oman's state television, along with Ambassador Edward W. Gnehm, Jr., member of the AGSIW board of directors, at a cultural event at the Sultan Qaboos Cultural Center.

1050 Connecticut Ave NW, Suite 1060

Washington, DC 20036

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