The Middle East is imploding. America is pulling back. Time for a new regional strategy.
As upheaval sweeps into country after country of the Middle East, endemic instability has become the order of the day—with no end in sight. Egypt and Tunisia seem permanently on the verge of civil war, Syria in the midst of it; Libya and Yemen are disintegrating, with Lebanon and Iraq seemingly not far behind; unrest is seeping into Algeria, Morocco, Sudan, and Jordan; not even oil-rich Saudi Arabia or the smaller Gulf states seem immune. Long-established certitudes about the regional order are no more, having been supplanted by an Arab “spring” that produced neither a summer of democracy and prosperity nor a return to the winter of past authoritarian immobility but, rather, a prolonged autumn of volatility and baffling uncertainty….