Strategic Council Online—Interview: A university professor says re-stationing of American military personnel in Iraq, giving legitimacy to their presence and weakening the status of Hashd al-Shabi in Iraq are the main objectives of NATO’s decision to increase the number of its military forces in Iraq by eight times, adding that if there is no serious determination by foreign players to make Iraq insecure, Iraqi forces can guarantee security in the fight against terrorism.
Strategic Council Online – In the nearly 60-year old history of the Munich Security Conference, which is held annually by the private sector on global security policy in the presence of international security and military politicians, this is the first time that a president of the United States has attended it, and for the first time since taking office, has addressed the European audience directly.
Mahmoud Fazeli – Analyst of international affairs
Strategic Council Online – Positions and remarks of the officials of the new US administration show that the war in Yemen is one of the important topics on the agenda of the White House in the field of foreign policy. As US President Joe Biden described in his first foreign policy speech the Yemen war: “a war which has created humanitarian and strategic catastrophe. …This war has to end.”
Hamid Khoshayand – Analyst of international affairs
Strategic Council Online – An expert on the Middle East affairs predicted that a tense period is awaiting US-Saudi relations.
Strategic Council Online – The former Director-General of the Middle East Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, stating that the interests of governments and regional powers in the Middle East are in conflict and trans-regional players too are not interested in its stability and security, said: In case relations with Saudi Arabia are organized through diplomacy and differences are resolved through negotiation it would help improve the two countries’ position in the world.
Strategic Council Online – An analyst of Europe affairs said: The EU will definitely work in the future to persuade the United States to return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and by providing credit line, economic incentives and close engagement and cooperation with China and Russia as Iran’s allies will continue to encourage Tehran to stay in the JCPOA.
Strategic Council Online—Interview: An expert of Afghanistan affairs says it seems the Americans had reached an agreement with the Taliban to limit their military presence in Afghanistan, adding that the United States would prolong its military presence in Afghanistan not to lose it to its rivals like in Iraq.
Strategic Council Online – A researcher at the Center for the Middle East Studies commenting on the challenges ahead for the Saudi government says with Biden coming to power, Saudi Arabia will no longer have the favourable position and special place it had in the Donald Trump administration.
Strategic Council Online – A faculty member of the School of International Relations at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that the short, medium and long-term impacts of the Coronavirus on international politics, security, and the economy will be significant. He noted: Competition in the field of vaccines and their distribution process in manufacturing countries and their allies has been emerged, creating new economic geography that may be used in future.
Strategic Council Online – An expert on the Middle East Affairs, referring to the recent policies of the French President, Emmanuel Macron to get closer to Saudi Arabia after Joe Biden took office, said France wants to fill the gap caused by the United States to reduce its strong presence in the Middle East.
Strategic Council Online – Since 2018, we have been witnessing numerous, intertwined and continuous developments in the South Asian region with a focus on Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. The two vital and challenging issues in the region are the Afghan peace process and the Kashmir issue.
Dr. Maedeh Karimi – Researcher of Pakistan affairs
Strategic Council Online-Interview: An expert of international affairs says Biden is intending, within the framework of his approach to the US foreign policy, to adopt a united policy towards Iran with Washington’s European allies.
Strategic Council Online – Former Iranian ambassador to Romania and Hungary, stating that some want to complicate the process of advancing the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and create the conditions for other parties to gain more concessions from Iran, said: Opponents of improvement of Iran’s economic situation are trying to raise issues and create new conditions to make the implementation of JCPOA difficult and even impossible.
Strategic Council Online – In July 2020, former US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper presented a plan to reduce the number of US troops in Germany by 12,000. The majority of the troops, estimated at about 6,400, should return to the United States, while about 5,600 troops would remain in Europe, based in Belgium and Italy, and several thousand would travel on US-European rotation plans. The headquarters of the United States European Command (EUCOM), as well as the US Army Special Operations Command in Europe, will be moved from Stuttgart in Germany to Belgium. The plan reduced the number of US troops stationed in Germany from 36,000 to 24,000. Based on US claim, the measure would “strengthen NATO”, “deter Russia” and “reassure US allies”. Even some US analysts have called the move a “revenge” against Merkel.
Mahmoud Fazeli – Expert on International Affairs
Strategic Council Online – Although for a long time, governments were the most important and only players in international politics and power was the first and most important determinant of international equations, in recent decades and with the emergence of non-governmental players, we have been witness to their role-playing.
Hamid Khoshayand – Expert on International Affairs
Strategic Council Online – Iran’s presence and influence in the region, which is a constructive and stabilizing one that eliminates insecurity and panic, is one of the main red lines in compliance with safeguarding the strategic interests of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Hamid Khoshayand – Analyst of international affairs
Strategic Council Online—Opinion: The relations between Moscow and the European Union has reached its lowest since the Cold War after developments in 2014 which resulted in the accession of Crimea to the Russian soil, Russian intervention in the civil war of Syria, alleged interference of Russia in the 2016 US presidential elections which resulted in the victory of Donald Trump and ultimately allegations to poison Alexi Navalny the harsh Kremlin critic and his detention of imposition of sanctions.
Mahmood Fazeli-expert of international issues
Strategic Council Online – An expert on the subcontinent affairs said that with Biden coming to power, the strategy that the Americans have devised for Afghanistan will not change, but perhaps the current administration’s tactics towards Taliban and Afghanistan would be different from those of Donald Trump.
Strategic Council Online – An expert on the Middle East affairs commenting on Italy’s recent decision to cancel permits for the export of missiles and fighter jets to Saudi Arabia and the UAE, said: Due to the high level of disasters in Yemen, Western countries are seeking to halt any cooperation in this regard, especially since Joe Biden has pioneered to cut off support for Saudi Arabia against Yemen.
Strategic Council Online – An expert on international affairs believes that the position taken by the new US Secretary of State and White House spokesman that Iran should first return to its obligations in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and then wait for the lifting of the US sanctions will not be accepted by Iran. The modality of the US return to the JCPOA is the test the Biden administration is facing.