ORIENT IV 2022: Global geopolitics echoing into the MENA region

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Dear ORIENT readers,

Too often, the Middle East and North Africa is approached as a region somewhat sealed off from the world, largely following its own logic of regional politics. A number of developments over the past months have showcased how this is a flawed approach – and was before, too.

But how do global geopolitics echo into the MENA region? Russia’s war on Ukraine has triggered food shortages in some MENA states, yet rising energy prices have benefitted others. At the same time, various multilateral organizations have recently published new strategic documents informed by a growing global systems competition.

Robert Springborg examines the global perspective on a developing competition of systems and how it reverberates into the MENA region. Subsequently, Gawdat Bahgat focuses specifically on the energy dimension, before Martin Keulertz takes the reader to the recent food shortages. Changing the scope, Matteo Moretti reviews the European Union’s recent Strategic Compass and Gulf Strategy, while Eleonora Ardemagni explores the role the MENA region plays in NATO’s new Strategic Concept. lastly, Nematullah Bizhan focuses on the case study of Afghanistan.

I hope that this issue provides you with valuable perspectives on how global geopolitics shape the region today. We hope that you and your loved ones stay healthy and in good spirits.

Dr. Andreas Reinicke
Director of the German Orient-Institute



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