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Since December 2017, at least three North Caucasian battalions in Syria have returned to their bases. While details are murky, recent developments and statements indicate that this could be the beginning of a partial Russian drawdown in Syria.
Turkey and Iran are close trading partners; the trade volume between the two countries stands at $10 billion. However, the reimposition of U.S. sanctions on Iran puts Turkey, already on the verge of an economic crisis, in a difficult spot.
Despite the absence of a public and formal account of what transpired during the meeting between Presidents Trump and Putin in Helsinki on Jul. 16, it seems that there is at least tacit agreement between the two leaders that will impact Syria as well as Jordan's stability and security.
<p>U.S. leadership claims they do not seek regime change in Iran; however, they appear to believe that if they capitalize on the anger of the Iranian people, they can gain leverage and force the regime to make policy concessions. While this could work, the strategy is more likely to collapse under the weight of its own contradictions.</p>
<p>What began as a regular rally for jobs near a Basran oil field has become a full-fledged protest movement, with Iraqis across the province demanding electricity, water, and employment. As the protests wind down, what legacy will they leave?</p>
The Houthi attack has been interpreted by the Saudis as an indication that Iran may make good on its promise to disrupt shipping in the Strait of Hormuz. Saudi Arabia will try to capitalize on the threat of further disruptions to justify the continuation of its military campaign against the Houthis in Hodeida.