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On the Middle East with Andrew Parasiliti and Amberin Zaman

Andrew Parasiliti and Amberin Zaman interview newsmakers each week from the US and Middle East about the latest news and trends in the region, with additional commentary from Al-Monitor’s ‘on-the-ground’ correspondents.

On The Middle East

Most Recent Episode #50

Dr. Ebtesam Al-Ketbi, president of the Emirates Policy Center, discusses how the Abraham Accords could help provide context for tough concessions on the most controversial issues facing Israelis and Palestinians; UAE interests and expectations in dealing with regional security and Iran; why the UAE is well-placed to help mediate in the Horn of Africa; how the Gulf manages the US-China competition; and her own journey as distinguished academic to founder of one of the region’s most influential and impactful think thanks.


-Can China balance ties with Iran and the GCC? (Al-Monitor)

-What UAE’s growing presence in Somaliland means for its Horn of Africa strategy (Al-Monitor)

-Egypt, UAE boost security cooperation in Chad, Sahel (Al-Monitor)

-UAE balances ties with Egypt, Ethiopia in Nile Dam Crisis (Al-Monitor)

On Israel with Ben Caspit

Ben Caspit, an Israel correspondent for Al-Monitor, brings you weekly interviews with newsmakers and officials to discuss the latest news in Israel.

On Israel with Ben Caspit

Most Recent Episode #44

Ben Caspit speaks this week with strategist Eran Etzion, who previously served as head of planning policy at Israel’s foreign ministry and as deputy head of the National Security Council in the prime minister's office. Etzion argues that the main reason for the escalation we now see both in east Jerusalem and the West Bank is Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s policies — policies that he says are totally guided by Netanyahu’s own, narrow political considerations. "We are indeed in a dangerous situation, and the core driver of these events is Israeli politics. What hopefully we will see soon is a relatively quick transformation of Israeli politics and the assembling a new government, to be followed by, gradually over time, with changes of the political terrain, the security terrain and the country’s strategy,” he says. 


-Israeli court to reconvene next week on eviction of Palestinian families (al-monitor.com) 

-Netanyahu’s government shaking over decision to ban demonstrations (al-monitor.com) 

-Naftali Bennett could be Israel’s next prime minister (al-monitor.com) 

-How Netanyahu is turning Israel into a banana republic (al-monitor.com) 

Off The Hookah with Phil and Cooper

We get it: the Middle East can be a complicated place, and sometimes it’s difficult to wrap your head around all the regional conflicts and political drama - that’s where we come in. We’re here to break down the major headlines, talk with experts and journalists, and give you a clearer picture of what’s happening in the region so you can impress your friends and promote our podcast. Sorry, that’s the shameless plug we were supposed to delete. Oh well. Off the Hookah with Phil and Cooper is a production of Al-Monitor.

Off The Hookah

As the coronavirus crisis continues to grip the world, the markets have been on the shakiest ground yet since the 2008 economic recession - especially with regards to the price of oil. In the last few years, Saudi Arabia and Russia have developed a special relationship to stabilize oil prices in the face of growing competition from the Americans, who for the first time has begun to outpace both countries in terms of production. But when demand for oil began to fall precipitously in the face of COVID-19, the relationship ended in a messy way. Phil and Cooper break down the bad breakup and how it’s affected economies worldwide.

Extra Listening

Music: Elman - “Антигерой” (Spotify)