Mr Trump’s proposed NATOME will be in the Middle East. That’s as ludicrous as the acronym

by Rashmee

Posted on February 14, 2020


It’s hard to see the rationale for Donald Trump’s call on the NATO alliance to increase its involvement in the Middle East.  He’s dreamt up a name for the mission – NATOME (NATO plus the initials of Middle East) – but beyond, there’s no clarity on anything very much. NATO is primarily focused on collective … Continue reading “Mr Trump’s proposed NATOME will be in the Middle East. That’s as ludicrous as the acronym”

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Why a small American state can have a big impact on the world

by Rashmee

Posted on February 12, 2020 / The National


The battle for the US presidency gets properly under way with Tuesday’s election in New Hampshire, a small north-eastern state, where the Democratic Party picks its preferred choice for presidential nominee. Meanwhile, two seemingly contradictory narratives are emerging. The first is that the Democratic Party is simply incapable of winning against incumbent president Donald Trump … Continue reading “Why a small American state can have a big impact on the world”

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Iowa caucuses show Middle East issues matter

by Rashmee

Posted on February 2, 2020 / The Arab Weekly


After the results of all 99 counties are tabulated, the Iowa caucuses are supposed to offer a clarifying moment for the United States and the wider world. On February 3, Iowa, a predominantly rural state in the American Midwest, kicks off the US presidential primary season. Across the state, Iowans will caucus, which is to … Continue reading “Iowa caucuses show Middle East issues matter”

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When it comes to peace, is the EU really a great power?

by Rashmee

Posted on January 21, 2020 / The National


Even before he became the European Union’s new foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, suggested that Europe should speak the “language of power”. And German foreign minister Heiko Maas called for a “strong and sovereign Europe”, which could be a bigger player on the world stage through a proposed European Security Council. It is fitting, then, … Continue reading “When it comes to peace, is the EU really a great power?”

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Trump’s threat to ruin Iraq financially has a historical parallel

by Rashmee

Posted on January 19, 2020 / The Arab Weekly


It is outrageous to expect Iraq, which has suffered the loss of hundreds of thousands of lives and the destruction of its infrastructure and economy, to pay for its own occupation. When US President Donald Trump threatened to make Iraq pay for the sprawling US base west of Baghdad if it forced American troops to … Continue reading “Trump’s threat to ruin Iraq financially has a historical parallel”

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Raisina Dialogue 2020 is a nod to multi-alignment

by Rashmee

Posted on January 14, 2020 / The National


Today, exactly 11 days after the targeted US strike on Iran’s top general Qassem Suleimani, Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif will be under the same patch of New Delhi sky and talking to the same people as US deputy national security adviser Matthew Pottinger and senior US diplomat Alice Wells. That is reassuring, after fears … Continue reading “Raisina Dialogue 2020 is a nod to multi-alignment”

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Carlos Ghosn could be bad news for Lebanon

by Rashmee

Posted on January 12, 2020 / The Arab Weekly


The world is consumed by events in and about Iran and Iraq, as well as US President Donald Trump’s fitful pronouncements on foreign policy, but any leftover attention will surely centre on Carlos Ghosn and, by extension, Lebanon. Much of the attention for Ghosn and Lebanon won’t be flattering, especially after the extraordinary news conference … Continue reading “Carlos Ghosn could be bad news for Lebanon”

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The US is energy independent but only up to a point

by Rashmee

Posted on January 10, 2020


On Wednesday (Jan.8) Donald Trump declared that the US was “energy independent” and that “we do not need Middle East oil”. That’s true – up to a point. Four months ago, the US became a net oil exporter for the first time since records began in 1973. This is because of America’s shale oilfields, which … Continue reading “The US is energy independent but only up to a point”

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After the assassination…America and the ‘Dr Evil’ syndrome

by Rashmee

Posted on January 8, 2020


I’m with Gideon Rachman, the Financial Times’ chief foreign affairs columnist. He recently suggested that the US should cease to indulge in the “persistent fallacy “ of the “Dr Evil syndrome”. Basically, it runs to a very simple (and unrealistic) idea. This is the notion, that in real life, just as in a Hollywood film, … Continue reading “After the assassination…America and the ‘Dr Evil’ syndrome”

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Was the drone strike on Iran’s General Qassem Soleimani an assassination?

by Rashmee

Posted on January 7, 2020


The Trump administration has long had a problem with words that inconveniently mean something quite different from what it wants. Generally, it takes a bullish approach to this and just dubs everything that it doesn’t like “fake news”. But there seems to be no way for it to characterise as “fake news” the wording being … Continue reading “Was the drone strike on Iran’s General Qassem Soleimani an assassination?”

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Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, US and UK