Events in the Middle East since November 2017 have taken some dramatic steps even for this politically volatile region.
Wars in Syria and Iraq grind on against now a much reduced ISIS threat however the Syrian Defence Force/Kurdish (YPG led and US supported) coalition are now vying for land and political control in regained territories. Libya’s civil strife continues with little notice given by the rest of the world until something dramatic happens.
Part 2: Iran’s Nuclear Deal: Road to Peace or Road to War?
The long protracted Iranian deal over nuclear development restrictions coupled with sanction lifting between Iran and the 5 permanent members of the UN Security Council, namely the US, China, France, the UK, Russia plus Germany (G5+1), has been reached. It was announced on the 14th July 2015 to the world by both the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and US President Barack Obama to jubilation in Tehran and sharp criticism in the US and unsurprisingly Israel. Read more
Part 1: Opening Corridors and Pathways to Peace in the Middle East: Territorial Gains In Syria & Nuclear Agreement Reached In Iran.
With a disaster in Tunisia creating yet more despair.
On Monday 15th June the Syrian Kurdish YPG led forces captured the strategic town of Tel Abayd long held by the jihadi forces of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) aided by US-led coalition airstrikes. I heard about this on the Tuesday 16th from a Kurdish source viewing the victory as a game changer in the territorial battles in Syria and a step towards self-rule for Kurds or in the fullness of time a Kurdish state. Read more
Where are we headed is the question?
Will oil be the issue of 2015 or Eurozone deflation?
There’s been some volatility in recent months for financial markets were the VIX index, referred to as the fear index for markets, showed larger peaks appearing as investor concerns rose over issues like the ending of QE in the US, weak Eurozone demand or Russian actions over the Ukraine and more over.
Once again the US Air Force has commenced a bombing campaign in Iraq. This time in support of the Kurdish Peshmerga forces fighting in north western Iraq against the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (now simply called IS). The RAF sent Tornado fighter bombers to conduct surveillance missions with a combat role now beginning.
The friendly Commonwealth Games are underway in Glasgow. The Test Series between former British colony and now Commonwealth partner India continues in Southampton in Hampshire. The Golf Open and Wimbledon Tennis Championships are already past. The UK is enjoying some pleasant summer weather along with economic growth and GDP finally back above 2008 levels (though not per capita).