With Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Libya all ravaged by conflict, ISIL is gaining ground and Israelis and Palestinians are still no closer to peace. Has U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East and North Africa failed?
The Heat discusses US foreign policy in the Middle EastWith Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Libya all ravaged by conflict, ISIL is gaining ground and Israelis and Palestinians are still no closer to peace. Has U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East and North Africa failed?
The United States went to war in Iraq in March 2003. Although the war resulted in the overthrown and execution of Iraq’s leader, Saddam Hussein, no weapons of mass destruction were ever found.
Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis died in the conflict as well as about 5,000 American military personnel.
Today, large parts of Iraq are controlled by Islamic State militants, including Mosul, one of Iraq’s largest cities. And now the U.S. is debating about sending some troops back into the fight.
In Libya, U.S. President Obama intervened in March 2011. U.S. military strikes helped rebels overthrow Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. The effort was part of the so called “Arab Spring” supported by the U.S.
But after Gaddafi was killed, Libya dissolved into chaos with armed militias fighting for control. Libya now has two governments competing for power.
ISIL is setting up in force in the desert nation. Earlier this month the group beheaded 21 Egyptian Christians on a Libyan beach. Meanwhile, the United States has closed its Libyan embassy.
In Syria war has raged since 2011. The U.S. wanted President Bashar al-Assad out but he has still four years in power and ISIL controls much of the country. The U.S. has no embassy presence in Syria either.
In Yemen, four years after its Arab Spring protests, the country is now largely controlled by Houthi rebels. The U.S. recently closed its embassy there as well.
Meanwhile prospects for peace between Israel and the Palestinians look remote. And relations between President Obama and Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu have nose-dived. Both leaders are not expected to meet when Mr. Netanyahu visits Washington next month to deliver a speech to the United States Congress.
The Heat discusses U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East with two leading experts on the Middle East:
- Stephen Seche, a former U.S. Ambassador to Yemen. He also served at the U.S. Embassy in Damascus from 2004 to 2006.
- Sajad Jiyad, an analyst and researcher focused on Iraq. He’s a fellow at the Iraqi Institute for Economic Reform in Baghdad.
The Heat discusses US foreign policy in the Middle East Pt1The Heat discusses U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East with two leading experts on the Middle East
The discussion about U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East continued with two more guest:
- Abdel Bari Atwan, a journalist and author who writes about Middle East issues. He lectures around the world and is a frequent media contributor.
- Michael O’Hanlon, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution where he specializes in American foreign policy.