Washington’s refusal to grant a visa to Iran’s new diplomat to the UN has thrown hurdles in relations which are experiencing a thaw.
The long queues of Afghan men and women across the country during the April 5 elections directly challenged many assumptions about Afghans and the prospects of democratisation of mutli-ethnic, conflicted and Islamic societies. US President Barack Obama's characterisation of the unexpectedly high turnout of Afghan voters, as "historic", was a rare occasion when Afghans are commended for their civic courage.
U.S. President Barack Obama recently visited Saudi Arabia, making it his second trip there, after first visiting in 2009. This trip, however, was made markedly different by the highly complex circumstances plaguing not just the Arab region, but the Gulf region itself. The differing politics and approaches to foreign [Read more]
With the stage set for the crisis in Ukraine on another spike as Crimeans vote in the referendum, the question is: what now? The West, with US in the lead, has lined up a slew of sanctions if Russia annexes the peninsular province.
What is more worrying is that the concern of ordinary Afghans is not shared by their government. The unwillingness of the Karzai government to sign the security deal is baffling and incomprehensible.
And if you consider that one man's stalemate is another man's opportunity, the future might not be so bleak for Assad and his people. Especially as substantial defections and desertions in the Syrian government armed forces have not materialised, as was hoped in Washington, and popular support for the rebels has been on the wane recently.
As a new phase of nuclear talks begins between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany (P5+1) in Vienna on February 18, one thing is clear: From here onwards, diplomacy depends primarily on the ability of the presidents of Iran and the US to absorb and sell compromise.