RAND's international affairs research comprises a range of cross-cutting issues, including global economies and trade, space and maritime security, diplomacy, global health and education, nation building, and regional security and stability. RAND also analyzes the policies and effectiveness of international organizations such as the UN, NATO, European Union, and ASEAN.
Iran may feel more confident and gain a sense of prestige from a nuclear capability, but other factors, such as the regional geopolitical environment and Iran’s political, military, and economic capabilities, will have a greater bearing on Iranian calculations.
An autonomous Kurdish region that remains an integral part of Syria, even one dominated by the PYD (the Democratic Union, the largest and best organized Kurdish opposition party), would be far less dangerous than one dominated by forces affiliated with al Qaeda. And that should be welcome news to more than just Turkey.
Rouhani's new government is not pro-Western by any stretch of the imagination, writes Alireza Nader. But its political interests and Iran's current predicament provide a unique opportunity to solve the nuclear crisis peacefully.
The resolution of Iran's nuclear crisis does not only depend on U.S.-Iranian relations, but also on other factors including the fate of three Iranian prisoners.
“While the proponents of Air-Sea Battle are careful to say that the strategy isn't focused on one specific adversary, we shouldn't kid ourselves: The Chinese see it as aimed at them,” write David C. Gompert and Terrence K. Kelly.
If Hezbollah's participation in the Syrian civil war begins to clearly tip the balance in favor of the Assad regime, the U.S. could face pressure to adjust its position and support efforts to minimize Hezbollah's position in Lebanon.
Are U.S. officials deluded about the prospects for cooperation with a country that is fundamentally determined to undermine its goals? No, writes Olga Oliker. In fact, they are pursuing a rational approach towards a state that shares U.S. interests in some key areas, even as it fundamentally disagrees in others.
U.S. policy should not be hamstrung by a narrow focus on democratization, writes Seth G. Jones. More than ever, the United States and its allies should think first about protecting their vital strategic interests in Egypt and the region.
Critics advocate for acknowledging that what occurred in Egypt is a coup and shutting off the more than $1.5 billion that Egypt receives annually from the US government. But this position fails to appreciate the limits of the leverage Washington derives from its aid to Cairo and the potential consequences of halting it.
If greater co-ordination were possible across European nations — allied to a more professional cadre of soldiers — far fewer troops would be required, writes Matt Bassford. A reduction in land forces could deliver savings of approximately €6.5 billion in wage costs alone.
A year ago, the United States and Myanmar (Burma) did not even have ambassadors in each other's capitals. In May, President Thein Sein became the first leader from Myanmar to visit the White House in nearly a half-century. Has Obama's administration been too quick to embrace what was one of the world's most repressive regimes?
Safeguarding Turkey's interests — and Erdoğan's own political agenda — depends on Erdoğan's willingness to adopt a more even-handed approach to his domestic opponents, writes F. Stephen Larrabee.
Even as conflict rages, a wave of research and innovation in Arabian Gulf countries is bringing with it significant investment in science and research infrastructure — and even U.S.-style universities, writes Shelly Culbertson.
Competition from American industry would help drive Chinese firms to be more socially responsible and generate greater benefits for African communities, write Larry Hanauer and Lyle Morris.
The imposition of sanction after sanction without a clear diplomatic approach may convince Iran's leadership that the United States seeks regime implosion and overthrow rather than a solution to the nuclear crisis, write Alireza Nader and Colin H. Kahl.
Rouhani may improve the economy in pursuing his underlying goal to preserve the Islamic system, writes Alireza Nader. But not all Iranians would be satisfied with just economic improvements. Many want greater freedom of expression and a bigger say in the political system.
Iran's unelected institutions—the deep state—remain more powerful than any other force. At the same time, Rouhani's election may mean that Khamenei realizes the extent of Iran's crisis and is willing to let Rouhani pave a way forward.
Qatar has a salsa scene. Dubai hosted the big international Fujairah Latin Festival. The Oman Salsa Festival took place in March. Jordan and Cairo both have a salsa scene. What makes this so conversation-worthy is that it is indicative of a growing cultural openness in parts of the Middle East.
Research shows that engaged fathers have a positive influence on their children. Educational success, better social development, and higher self-esteem are some of the documented effects on children who have dads involved in their everyday life.
The best way to safeguard U.S. diplomatic missions abroad is to think hard up front about the purpose of the mission and to constantly reassess it in light of changing conditions, writes William Young.
The US, working closely with its allies, should approach each potential conflict with North Korea in its own context, sculpting policy that draws on experience as well as observations made through research, writes Lowell Schwartz.