Gulf Cooperation Council

  • What a Donald Trump Presidency Means for the Middle East

    On November 8, Donald J. Trump was elected the forty-fifth president of the United States. In transcribed interviews, Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East experts weigh in on what a Donald Trump presidency means for the Middle East.
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  • The GCC Response to Turkey’s Failed Coup

    Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states hailed Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s triumph over last week’s failed coup attempt. The Council’s powerhouse Saudi Arabia expressed support for Turkey’s “elected government” with “constitutional legitimacy.” By detaining Turkey’s military attaché to Kuwait on Sunday at Dammam Airport, at Ankara’s request, the Saudis also demonstrated their willingness to collaborate with Erdogan’s crackdown in the failed coup’s aftermath.
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  • Saab in Defense News: Future Deterrence Frameworks for the GCC


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  • What Brexit Means for the GCC

    The startling result of the referendum on the United Kingdom’s membership of the European Union has caused political and economic chaos in Britain unparalleled since World War Two. Prime Minister David Cameron will be out of power by September 2 and Britain faces a period of profound uncertainty and volatility over the nature of its future relationship with the EU.
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  • US Middle East Policy Must Include Allies and Adversaries

    A sustainable US Middle East policy should include closer cooperation with longstanding allies—including the United Kingdom and France—but also a strategic dialogue with adversaries such as Russia and China, according to Bilal Y. Saab, a Senior Fellow for Middle East Security at the Atlantic Council’s Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security.

    In light of the United States’ shifting global priorities and defense budget cuts, the Arab Spring, and the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) in the Middle East, the United States “can do much more with our allies in a much more formal fashion,” said Saab.

    “It’s time to update the hub and spoke model of engagement we’ve relied on since the seventies,” he added.

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  • After Hub-and-Spoke: US Hegemony in a New Gulf Security Order

    On Friday, April 29 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. the Atlantic Council hosted a discussion of a new report by Brent Scowcroft Center Senior Fellow Bilal Saab, entitled After Hub-and-Spoke: US Hegemony in a New Gulf Security Order, and a debate on US global defense posture in the next decade and how it might affect future US designs in the region. Regional transformation and chaos resulting from the Arab uprisings, the rise of the Islamic State (or ISIS) in the Middle East and beyond, shifting US global priorities, and the increasing influence of outside powers in the Gulf have created a new geopolitical context for the United States’ commitment to the security of the Gulf. The panel discussed the ways in which the region’s new strategic trends and security dynamics impact US interests, priorities, and future force posture and the ways in which the...
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  • US-GCC Ties Need to Expand Beyond Oil

    As the perceived notion of oil-for-security diminishes with the United States’ declining demand for oil from the Middle East, the Gulf Cooperation Council states must develop their militaries, fight threatening ideologies, and decrease their economies’ dependence on oil without waiting for the United States to lead the way. However, even as the United States and the GCC fail to see eye to eye on some of the region’s security issues, both sides would be well served to advance their shared economic interests beyond oil.

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  • From Reassurance to Shared Interests: Bridging the Gulf at the Riyadh Summit

    President Barack Obama’s meeting with the leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) in Saudi Arabia this week is a previously scheduled follow-up to last year’s Camp David meeting, which notably secured the Gulf states’ passive endorsement of the Iran nuclear deal. There is no comparable deliverable expected this week, and the case for low expectations is made stronger by President Obama’s limited time remaining in office. Indeed, the most important accomplishment of this week’s Riyadh meeting may be that it is held at all.  It should serve as a signal to internal and external audiences that despite differences and grievances on both sides, the partnership between the United States and the GCC remains important. This is not an insignificant message, given the state of the region and the tenor of recent Washington commentary.
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  • Keeping the Possibility of Peace in Yemen Alive

    The talks at the GCC summit this week provide an opportunity for President Barack Obama to address the war and humanitarian crisis in Yemen. The delegation representing the Houthis and ousted president Ali Abdullah Saleh’s General People’s Congress (GPC) delegations finally turned up today for peace talks in Kuwait, but the prospects for ending the war soon are hanging by a thread. Obama’s visit to the region could keep the possibility alive by encouraging Saudi Arabia to adhere to the ceasefire whether or not the talks produce immediate results.
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  • Pavel Quoted by The National on President Obama's Gulf Cooperation Council Summit


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