A Surplus of Deficits

From a political economy perspective, there are four key forces working against the peace and prosperity of Middle Eastern and North African states. To defeat them, robust institutions are essential.

Kirkuk’s Oil Chessboard

ISIS, the Kurdistan Regional Government, the Iraqi government, and numerous other regional and international players have all vied for control of Kirkuk’s oil. But the struggle to rule this commodity has become a political chess game stretching across northern Iraq and beyond.

Speed Bumps on the Silk Road

China has unveiled a “win-win” policy paper to guide its approach to the Middle East. Its $1 trillion One Belt One Road infrastructure initiative will extend all the way to North Africa. But can trade buy Beijing political clout in the region?