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By Matt Kibbe
The short-term deal will assure long-term overspending
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Sami Alfaraj
Around a gold-draped hall in Saudi Arabia, Gulf envoys listened to their host denounce the Syrian regime as an enemy of its people and the region.
One afternoon in May, police in Bahrain led away security guard Mahdi Ali from his job at the Gulf kingdom's state-controlled aluminum plant.
Iran's internal power struggles are shifting into election mode, with hard-line political forces banding together to groom candidates for next year's parliamentary elections and punish allies of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
The Obama administration says the latest round of sanctions appears to have succeeded in bringing additional pressure against Iran's nuclear program. But private experts question whether the penalties will achieve their goal of compelling Tehran to give up any nuclear ambitions.
"Nearly everywhere you look in the Middle East now, Iran is somehow in the picture," said Sami Alfaraj, director of the Kuwait Center for Strategic Studies. "And where you have Iran, that means its rivalry with Saudi Arabia is also there."
"America has lost the predictability of friends like Mubarak," said Sami Alfaraj, director of the Kuwait Center for Strategic Studies. "But, at the same time, its allies in the Gulf are on the rise. So I would call it a shuffle for America. Maybe a step back in some places, but not in others."