Gulf states are expanding the scope of their military education programs to build a new generation of decisionmakers capable of realizing their strategic ambitions.
Military expressions of national identity are helping Gulf countries boost loyalty to the state yet are likely to exacerbate regional polarization.
Berlin’s security concerns over Salafi extremism in Germany could easily reignite latent tensions with Riyadh.
Saudi Arabia is applying its same harsh interpretation of “terrorism” it uses to repress domestic activists to silence criticism from abroad.
Although Tunisia’s leadership appears to be warming to Saudi Arabia at a critical moment for the kingdom, Riyadh cannot rely on its allegiance.
Oman’s drive for economic diversification is contributing to its rapprochement with Israel, which can offer its expertise and technology for agriculture, entrepreneurship, and defense.
Water scarcity in Iran threatens not just its agricultural self-sufficiency but may also strain its energy exports in the long term, two sectors it hopes to rely on to weather new economic sanctions.
Rising public trust in Arab militaries at the expense of governments could signal a disruptive trend in civil-military relations and portend instability to come.
By mediating conflicts and combining their assets in the Horn of Africa, Saudi Arabia and the UAE are slowly cementing an arc of political influence across the region.
Seeking to expand its influence in the Red Sea, Russia is hoping that mediating internal disputes in Yemen will help make the region more secure.
The Saudi-led coalition’s focus on driving out the Houthis has given Al-Qaeda more room to regroup in Yemen.
Qatar’s pledge of aid to Turkey has deepened the two countries’ alliance, even as Turkish officials worry Doha will not deliver.
The blockade against Qatar has had a disproportionate economic impact on foreign workers, though increased self-sustainability efforts may provide new employment opportunities.
Saudi Arabia’s spat with Canada aims to rally nationalist sentiment among citizens, but has made regional allies and international investors more anxious.
The overlapping jurisdictions of Saudi Arabia’s governing bodies and the state’s hyper-centralized nature doom such initiatives as Vision 2030.
The UAE’s growing investment in Yemen’s energy and security infrastructure is increasingly the driving force behind its counterterrorism involvement.
Gulf economic aid has averted Jordan’s debt crisis for now, but further support may require concessions regarding the kingdom’s previously independent foreign policy.
Impending sanctions on Iran will make Turkey’s energy imports more expensive and contribute to the devaluation of the lira.
Saudi Arabia’s efforts at reforming its armed forces may be more about politics and PR than substantive change.
Its economic future in question, Tehran is looking to maintain and increase its influence in Iraq by investing in schemes and projects linked with loyal paramilitary forces.