Three major events have begun to clarify the next phase of the Middle East’s position in world affairs. Washington announced decertification of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreement with Iran; the U.S.-backed forces in Syria and Iraq have captured Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) capital of Raqqa; and Moscow signaled that it sees an approaching end to the war in Syria.
These three events, taken together display to us the forthcoming somber outline of Middle Eastern events. Clearly the big winners are not the U.S. but rather Russia and Iran, despite President Trump’s announcement of a new campaign against Iran.
The problem we confront is very much of our own making and is reflected in the confluence of these three events. The defeat of ISIS merits congratulations to all involved, but it also comes with no political program about preventing an outbreak of a new ISIS or similar organizations even as such groups are already forming.