US influence shrank dramatically in the Mideast


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From the decisive clout of America in the Middle East in past decades, it remains today little apart from continued, interested, conditional support from the Sunni Gulf monarchies. In addition to traditionally hostile-to-US countries including Syria and Iran, former stalwart prominent allies like Turkey and even Israel to some extent have been building some distance between America and them.

Although the upcoming Trump administration should actively reverse what’s been done by the Obama administration, the Israeli government may have realized that the tremendous support it benefited from for a long time in Washington DC has much reduced in recent years. Once an essential ally of Washington and a cornerstone of NATO counterterrorist and intelligence activities in the Middle East, Turkey has progressively turned into an awkward ally from suspected trade with groups like ISIS to the quick building of close ties with Russia, now the lead role in the regional theater.

Worse than one could have imagined just one year ago, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused the United States of being behind the attempted coup against him in July 2016 and the arming of jihadist groups in the Syria-Iraq area. From the Iraq war launched in 2003 on the basis of faulty intelligence to the irresolute international coalition against ISIS and related groups in 2016, the United States has perhaps lost most of its long-term clout in the Middle East.

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