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A nation must think before it acts.
Changes in the Middle East have not been sufficiently accounted for in U.S. policy towards the region. Instead, policy has lagged, grounded in anachronism. This report provides five policy recommendations to fix this problem: focus Middle East policy on Chinese influence, empower the State Department, re-evaluate the purpose and location of military basing and forces, prioritize business interests, and acknowledge the reality of interacting with authoritarian states. In doing so, the United States can shift resources away from the region and still protect key interests and partners.
This report builds on an earlier report, Re-Thinking Assumptions for a 21st Century Middle East.