CMEPP News Archive

RAND researchers often write commentaries for publications on a variety of topics. This page lists commentaries and op-eds about the Middle East. For a complete list of commentaries and op-eds by RAND staff, visit the RAND Newsroom.

CMEPP in The News Archive:
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  • Lessons from 13 Years of War

    Dec 10, 2014

    During the past 13 years of war, U.S. conventional and special operations forces worked more closely together than in any previous conflict. Linda Robinson will discuss how special operations forces can be applied in Iraq and Syria and how the U.S. can apply the broad lessons of these years to a future strategy.

  • The Challenges for Democracies Facing Asymmetric Conflicts

    Dec 4, 2014

    While conventional warfare between nations declined in the past half-century, democratic countries increasingly have become involved in conflicts with non-state actors. Join us for a discussion of lessons learned in using military force in response to terrorism, as well as the legal, ethical, and moral implications of doing so.

  • Iran Nuclear Negotiations Extended: Reactions and Implications

    Nov 25, 2014

    RAND researchers Alireza Nader, Dalia Dassa Kaye, and Jeffrey Martini discuss November's extension to nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5+1. Moderated by Lynn Davis, director of RAND's Washington Office, these experts cover reactions from and implications for Iran, Israel, and the wider region

  • NATO's Campaign in Libya Offers Salient Lessons for the Air War Against ISIL

    Nov 25, 2014

    The NATO air campaign that helped defeat Qaddafi's regime in Libya has received relatively little mention in public discussion of the ongoing air strikes against ISIS. But the campaign in Libya offers at least five lessons that deserve greater attention today.

  • When Jihadis Come Marching Home

    Nov 19, 2014

    The existing pool of determined jihadists in America is very small and lacks training and experience, which fighting in Syria and Iraq would provide. Returning jihadi veterans would be more formidable adversaries. Still, the threat appears manageable using current U.S. laws and existing resources.

  • What's the Plan? The NATO Coalition in Afghanistan

    Nov 19, 2014

    The imminent changes to the NATO mission in Afghanistan will be profound and, more crucially, carry unpredictable outcomes. After January 1, the removal of tens of thousands of coalition troops will trigger an inevitable period of adjustment as all sides involved in the conflict press for a new equilibrium that tilts in its favor.

  • ISIS in Perspective

    Nov 15, 2014

    While ISIS poses a threat to the U.S., violence from the group is not likely to be aimed directly at the American homeland any time soon, according to a panel of experts who discussed the Middle East at RAND's Politics Aside event. But an attack could be mounted against the U.S. if ISIS were to establish a nation from the territory it holds in Syria and Iraq.

  • Afghanistan After America: A Fragile Stability

    Nov 14, 2014

    Since 2011, the United States, the Afghan government, and the Taliban have engaged in intermittent and often indirect talks about peace negotiations. It may be stalemate on the battlefield that eventually forces the parties to break this stalemate over the shape of a peace process.

  • Ignore Flap Over Obama Letter

    Nov 14, 2014

    While it is not surprising that the alleged letter from President Obama to Iranian Supreme Leader Khamenei has upset domestic critics of the nuclear negotiations, the alleged correspondence has also unsettled Israel and Saudi Arabia, which fear a “bad” deal with Iran and even secret collusion between Washington and Tehran. But such concerns seem unfounded.

  • Are Ethnic Politics Afghanistan's Great Hope?

    Nov 11, 2014

    Afghanistan's ethnic politics have tended to absorb inter-communal struggle more than exacerbate it. Afghan politicians have consistently opted for an ethnic balance of power once the votes are counted. The unity government deal brokered by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry aims to restore the ethnic balance that persisted under Hamid Karzai for more than a decade.

  • What's the Plan? The Afghan Government

    Nov 10, 2014

    With the election dispute settled, one can sense a feeling of hope and opportunity among the Afghan political spectrum. Members of each camp are voicing optimism and saying the right things, but before the unity government can address the country's issues, it must first clear the hurdle of appointing new leadership.

  • The Future of Blackwater and Other Guns for Hire

    Oct 28, 2014

    The story of how private military security companies came to play a pivotal role in wartime operations is an important one, and Ann Hagedorn, a former reporter for the Journal, was right to take it on.

  • Not to Worry, Israel

    Oct 23, 2014

    Some Israelis worry that America's fight against the Islamic State is distracting from the Iranian nuclear challenge. But the idea that the U.S. would make additional concessions to Iran in the nuclear negotiations because of the anti-Islamic State group effort is not based on realities on the ground.

  • Destroy ISIL's Heavy Weapons and Vehicles: Level the Playing Field

    Oct 20, 2014

    More than any other option, employing air power decisively to deny ISIL the ability to use its armor and artillery has the potential to immediately and dramatically shift the battlefield balance against it.

  • The Upside of Lower Oil Prices

    Oct 17, 2014

    Movement toward sharply lower oil prices should be a prominent component of any strategy directed at disabling many of the world's most disruptive threats: Iran's nuclear development, ISIS, Hamas attacks on Israel, and Russia's threat to Ukraine.