Ideas. Action. Impact. The Washington Institute for Near East Policy The Washington Institute: Improving the Quality of U.S. Middle East Policy

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Middle Eastern Reactions to the U.S. Travel Ban

As the Trump administration prepares to revise its controversial entry restrictions, a sampling of quotes from officials around the region indicates that certain provisions will be a hard sell abroad.

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The Future of Leadership in the Shiite Community

Mehdi Khalaji

Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi, a former Iranian judiciary chief who holds a prominent position in the Assembly of Experts, now has two paths to leadership of the Shiite community: first, as potential successor to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei; second, as eventual replacement for Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, the preeminent religious authority in Shia Islam.

Transition 2017

Policy Notes

General Principles to Guide U.S. Middle East Policy

James F. Jeffrey and Dennis Ross

Given the unprecedented turmoil and uncertainty afflicting the Middle East, the new administration will need to devote particular care and urgency to understanding the essence of America's interests in the region, and applying clear principles in pursuing them. This is the advice offered by two U.S. diplomats with...


Policy Notes

Rebuilding Alliances and Countering Threats in the Gulf

Lori Plotkin Boghardt and Simon Henderson

The Trump administration has an opportunity to reset, tighten, and maximize America's strategic relations with the Gulf states. For the United States, expanded security cooperation and coordination could be a force multiplier in campaigns to achieve key policy goals, such as countering Iran's destabilizing policies and defeating the Islamic State.