Geopolitical Conflicts in the Middle East

Geopolitical Conflicts in the Middle East

The Neverending Saga of Middle Eastern Conflicts

The Middle East is home to diverse cultures, thousands of years of history, and enormous riches, most notably in oil and natural gas reserves. However, it is also home to numerous conflicts that seem never to end and have the potential to engulf the entire region in turmoil. Such conflicts have their roots in the long history of the Middle East, with divides along religious, ethnic, and geopolitical lines.

The Israel-Palestine Conflict

One of the most intransigent conflicts in the region is the Israel-Palestine conflict. The issue revolves around the establishment of a Palestinian state in land currently occupied by Israel, but also involves religious, cultural, and historical claims. The conflict has been ongoing since 1948 and has seen numerous attempts at peace agreements, most recently with the Trump administration’s “deal of the century.”

The Syrian Civil War

The Syrian civil war, which started in 2011, has plunged the country into chaos, with an estimated 500,000 dead and millions of people displaced. The conflict is between President Bashar al-Assad’s government, supported by Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah, and various opposition groups, including ISIS. The devastating conflict has dragged in regional and international powers further complicating the situation.

The Yemen Conflict

The Yemen conflict is another example of the region’s conflicts and has been ongoing since 2015. The Houthi rebels, supported by Iran, took control of the capital, Sanaa, and parts of the country, sparking a Saudi-led coalition to intervene to restore the internationally recognized government. The conflict has since expanded, leading to humanitarian consequences, including famine and a cholera outbreak.

The Gulf Crisis

The Gulf crisis erupted in 2017 when several countries, led by Saudi Arabia, accused Qatar of supporting terrorism and cut all their diplomatic and economic relations. The conflict has exposed the deep fissures in the Gulf Cooperation Council, and despite mediation efforts, the dispute is still ongoing.

The Iran Nuclear Deal

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran nuclear deal, was signed in 2015 between Iran and the P5+1 (the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Russia, and China, plus Germany), which aimed to curb Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. However, since the Trump administration pulled out of the deal in 2018, tensions have escalated, with both Iran and the US engaging in a tit-for-tat escalation. In conclusion, the Middle East is a region marked by deep-rooted conflicts that continue to simmer, boil over, and have vast implications for the region and the world. Achieving lasting peace in the region remains one of the most substantial challenges facing the international community today.