Dr. James M. Dorsey

Dr. James M. Dorsey

Dr. James M. Dorsey

(Ph.D. University of Utrecht). Specializes in the Muslim world's political, social, and economic fault lines as well as Chinese policy towards the region with a focus on geopolitics, social movements, and political and militant Islam. James also focuses on the nexus of sports, politics, and society. Email: [email protected]

China Struggles with Belt and Road Pushback

| October 3, 2018

China, in an implicit recognition that at least some of its Belt and Road-related projects risk trapping target countries in debt or failing to meet their needs, has conceded that adjustments may be necessary.

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Turkic Muslims: China’s and the Muslim World’s Achilles Heel

| September 26, 2018

A list of 26 predominantly Muslim countries considered sensitive by China reflects Chinese concerns that they could reinforce religious sentiment among the People’s Republic’s Turkic Muslim population with potentially far-reaching consequences if the Islamic world were to take it to task for its crackdown in Xinjiang, the most frontal assault on Islam in recent history.

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Regional Players Maneuver to Reengineer the Israeli-Palestinian Landscape

| September 2, 2018

A possible ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, the Islamist group that controls the Gaza Strip, may be about more than ending the ongoing, escalating violence that threatens to spark yet another Gaza war. It could also be an attempt to pave the way for the return of Muhammad Dahlan as successor to PA President Mahmoud Abbas.

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Amid Ethnic Protests, Iran Warns of Foreign Meddling

| August 26, 2018

Iran has raised the specter of a US-Saudi effort to destabilize the country by exploiting economic grievances against the backdrop of circumstantial evidence that Washington and Riyadh are playing with scenarios for stirring unrest among the Islamic Republic’s ethnic minorities.

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Can the US Make Iran Sanctions Stick?

| August 22, 2018

Iranian leaders have said the future of the nuclear agreement (the JCPOA) in the wake of the US withdrawal will depend on the ability of Europe, China, and Russia to ensure that the impact of US sanctions is substantially blunted. While Europe’s resolve to do so is questionable, Russia, China, the UAE, and Oman appear willing to step in.

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Talking to Rouhani: Is Trump Shooting from the Hip or Reading from a Script?

| August 5, 2018

Message to Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, and Tel Aviv: Not to worry. US President Donald J. Trump has no intention of unconditionally meeting his Iranian counterpart, Hassan Rouhani. On the contrary: Trump’s surprise announcement that he is willing to talk to Rouhani is likely part of a plan formulated almost a year by National Security Advisor John R. Bolton before he returned to government service.

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Russian Hacking in the US and the Gulf

| July 23, 2018

The covert cyberwar that helped spark the 13-month-old Gulf crisis, which pits a Saudi-United Arab Emirates-led alliance against Qatar, may have just gotten murkier with the indictment of 12 Russian intelligence agents by US Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

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Saudi Religious Diplomacy Targets Jerusalem

| July 8, 2018

A United Arab Emirates-backed Saudi effort to wrest control from Jordan of Islam’s holy places in Jerusalem signals a sharper, more overt edge to Saudi religious diplomacy. The kingdom’s quest for regional hegemony risks deepening divides in the Muslim world.

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The Moroccan Boycotts: A New Model for Protest?

| June 22, 2018

Mounting anger and discontent is simmering across the Arab world much as it did in the run-up to the 2011 popular revolts that toppled four autocratic leaders. But this time around, the anger does not always explode in mass street protest,s as it recently did in Jordan. In Morocco, it is manifesting in the form of widespread boycotts.

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The 2018 World Cup Could Become the Middle East’s Latest Battlefield

| June 13, 2018

The simultaneous presence in Russia of the Saudi and Iranian teams for the 2018 World Cup is likely to shine a spotlight on the covert wars between Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Iran as well as on a related dispute over 2022 World Cup host Qatar, which did not qualify for this year’s tournament. Tensions will be present even if the kingdom and the Islamic Republic fail to meet face to face on the pitch.

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