We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Beware of Trump’s Double-game in the Middle East

Click here to access article by Salman Rafi Sheikh from New Eastern Outlook.

As the Trump administration's policies are taking shape, I've been wondering how the belligerent remarks made by Trump and his officials square with past indications that he wanted to improve relations with Russia. Sheikh looks squarely at this contradiction. This foreign policy appears to be another illustration of the quixotic nature of Trump's reign as he aggressively and recklessly tilts at so many windmills.
The policy towards Iran is, therefore, fundamentally different from the policy the Trump administration is probably designing towards Russia (read: Trump administration’s resolve to defeat the IS through joint action). Therefore, the key question here is: is the Trump administration looking for dividing the Russia-Iran relations—and if yes, can it do so?