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Strategic perspectives 19: Understanding Putin Through a Middle Eastern Looking Glass.


The resurgence of Russian influence in the Middle East has surprised Moscow as much as any other capital. Russia has done better than the Kremlin and its Middle East experts feared when the Arab Spring began. Despite Moscow's deep involvement in the Ukrainian crisis, Russia is now in a stronger position with national leaderships across the Middle East than it was in 2011, although its stock with Sunni Arab public opinion has been sinking.

The Western reaction to Russian actions in Ukraine has given Putin a greater incentive to work toward a more significant Russian profile in the Middle East. As Moscow sees it, this impulse by Putin is being reciprocated in the region.

No outside power may be up to a controlling role in the region any longer. But realism restrains all sides from believing that Russia is anywhere close to eclipsing the major role the United States still plays in the Middle East.

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Title Annotation:New from NDU Press: for the Center for Strategic Research; Russian president Vladimir Putin
Author:Parker, John W.
Publication:Joint Force Quarterly
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:70MID
Date:Apr 1, 2016
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