Columnist

Oubai Shahbandar

Oubai Shahbandar is a Fellow in New America's International Security Program. He is a former Department of Defense senior adviser, and currently a strategic consultant specializing in technology, energy and Arabian Gulf security

Twitter: @OS26

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Qatar’s deal with the devil

On the same day that Iranian President Hassan Rouhani had a weekend phone conversation with Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei issued his latest broadside against Saudi Arabia and the Arab coalition.

May 29, 2017

Closer US-Saudi defense ties more crucial than ever

Tens of billions of dollars of advanced weapons sales are expected to go ahead between the US and Saudi Arabia as President Donald Trump gears up for his historic visit. The approval and timing of these deliveries are part of a broader “reset” in the strategic partnership.

May 10, 2017

A possible political solution for Syria

Syria's religious and ethnic minorities are faced with difficult choices as the Syrian conflict shows no sign of abating.

May 05, 2017

Iran’s covert nuclear activity continues

Tehran is still pursuing research and testing that could lead to a weaponized nuclear device, the Iranian opposition said Friday.

April 26, 2017

Pentagon needs to double down in battle for Syria’s Badia

With Gen. James Mattis making his first official visit as secretary of defense to Saudi Arabia, one particular point of commonality is the matter of Arab tribal forces (many from the Shammar tribal confederation) fighting against Daesh in eastern Syria.

April 20, 2017

Trump makes the right call in Syria

Great leaders are often made by the decisions and paths they embark upon when faced with circumstances that shape history. In Syria, US President Donald Trump’s bold decision to strike the Bashar Assad regime has now brought him to the forefront of leadership on the global stage.

April 07, 2017