The Buzz

Iran's Struggles on Four Fronts—And Soon, Maybe a Fifth

Nearly twelve months after Iran’s diplomatic victory with the JCPOA, Tehran is still embroiled in four different major regional conflicts, and a fifth may soon break out. Two of the current fights, led by its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), are “hot” ones: against opposition and Islamist groups in Syria and against ISIS in Iraq. The other two are “colder” ones: a regional feud with Saudi Arabia and efforts against Israel in southern Lebanon and the Golan Heights, which are increasingly shaped by the Syrian civil war.

Is Brexit Actually Good For Europe?

Many ideologies have to achieve power before they can be refuted. Absent what used to be known as really existing socialism—the Gulag, Mao’s Cultural Revolution and so on—millions of people would probably continue to go to the barricades for a classless society. To recognize that there isn’t much choice is daunting. But it’s better than trying to create a utopia on earth with power and violence.

BREXIT: Time for the U.K. to Up Defense Spending

With the decision of Britain's electorate to exit the European Union, British leaders will be searching for the appropriate strategy to anchor their country's foreign policy in the decades to come. Whether one agrees with the "Brexit" gamble or not, it is clear that London will soon find itself in search of a new regional, and global, role once it is no longer a stakeholder in the great European experiment.

Fact: Iran's Air Force Flies American-Made F-14 Tomcats

On April 9, 1972, Iraq and the Soviet Union signed an historic agreement. The USSR committed to arming the Arab republic with the latest weaponry. In return for sending Baghdad guns, tanks and jet fighters, Moscow got just one thing — influence … in a region that held most of the world’s accessible oil.

In neighboring Iran, news of Iraq’s alliance with the Soviets exploded like a bomb. Ethnically Persian and predominately Shia, Iran was — and still is — a bitter rival of Iraq’s Sunni Arab establishment, which during the 1970s dominated the country’s politics.