24 Items

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Magazine Article - Harvard International Review

Illustrations and Influence: Soft Diplomacy and Nation Branding through Popular Culture

| April 18, 2016

This Harvard International Review piece examines the use of pop culture as a diplomatic strategy stands in appealing, warm, and humane opposition to the threat of military power. “Cultural programs are a demonstration of our good faith. They can help to change the mood if successful,” said Nicholas Burns, former Under Secretary of State under the Bush Administration and Harvard Kennedy School professor.

Iranian security forces members stand guard as the demonstrators hold posters of Nimr Baqir al-Nimr and shout slogans during a protest rally outside the embassy of Saudi Arabia against the execution of prominent Saudi Shia cleric Nimr Baqir al-Nimr.

Getty Images/Anadolu Agency

Analysis & Opinions - Agence Global

Maturity must replace frenzy to achieve a Gulf grand bargain

| January 9, 2016

"A fascinating aspect of the escalating feud between Iran and Saudi Arabia is the variety of views and actions by the six members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). Two of them (Saudi Arabia and Bahrain) cut off diplomatic ties with Iran, three others only recalled their ambassadors, and Oman has maintained full diplomatic ties.

This instructive variety of responses shows the range of political attitudes and calculations among the GCC members, who follow their own self-interest rather than act like an unthinking herd. Four of the six maintain official communication channels with Tehran because it allows continued direct diplomacy at a moment when this crisis starts to shift towards trying to find a negotiated resolution..."

Shiite Muslim Iraqis hold posters showing prominent Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr during a demonstration against his execution by Saudi authoritiesin the capital Baghdad on January 6, 2016. Nimr's execution led to Shiite protests in several Muslim countries

Getty Images/A. Al-Rubaye

Analysis & Opinions - Fortune

What Saudi Arabia's Spat with Iran Means for the U.S.

| January 6, 2016

"The Middle East is in for another tumultuous year. Earlier this week, Saudi Arabia cut off diplomatic ties with Iran after authorities executed a popular Shiite cleric. Anyone watching this meltdown unfold has every reason to think of worse-case scenarios, as it will only deepen the Middle East’s widening sectarian divide, intensify the region’s multiple conflicts, and set back efforts to defeat the Islamic State and end the bloodshed in Syria..."

Demonstrators protest outside the embassy of Saudi Arabia against the execution of prominent Saudi Shia cleric Nimr Baqir al-Nimr by Saudi authorities, in Tehran, Iran in January 2016.

Getty Images/Anadolu Agency

Analysis & Opinions - Agence Global

The dark heart of 2015’s legacy across the Middle East

| January 2, 2016

"Freedom of expression and participation in the public sphere are powerful antidotes to the sense of hopelessness, marginalization, and helplessness that were such important drivers of the Arab uprisings and revolutions in 2011-12. The freedom to speak out and engage politically in society keeps people seeking non-violent ways to repair the broken systems and promises of their societies. For educated young adults, it also helps to keep them living in their own countries, rather than emigrating and depriving their societies of their talents and energy..."

Portico of US Supreme Court building, Washington, DC.

Getty Images

Analysis & Opinions - Agence Global

The US Supreme Court wisely upholds the law

| June 10, 2015

"One of the great battles that has been taking place within the United States in recent years has seen two separate issues meshed into a single confrontation: One is the powers of the Congress vs. the powers of the president in foreign policy decisions, and the second is whether the United States should stand squarely behind Israel in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict or pay the role of an impartial mediator that seeks a negotiated peace based on international law that meets the security interests of both sides."