Is Yemen the First Battleground in the Trump Administration’s Confrontation with Iran?
February 23, 2017
President Donald J. Trump’s administration and U.S. partners in the region – in particular, Saudi Arabia – see Yemen as an important arena in which to confront Iran’s destabilizing behavior, and to neutralize the threat it is seen as posing to Gulf Arab states. But this confrontational approach carries the risk of triggering Iranian retaliation, or even an armed conflict involving Iran, the United States, and the United States’ regional partners. What role is the United States playing in the conflict in Yemen and is its support for the Saudi-led intervention likely to increase? Is Iran challenging the Trump administration’s resolve by testing ballistic missiles and applauding attacks by Houthi rebels on Saudi targets? Will the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action survive the increased tensions and do the parties involved have the space or the inclination to de-escalate current tensions?
AGSIW was pleased to host a discussion of these issues and other challenges facing the Trump administration and U.S. partners in the Gulf as they push back against growing Iranian influence in the region.
Fahad Nazer, International Affairs Fellow, National Council on U.S. Arab Relations
Peter Salisbury, Senior Research Fellow, Middle East and North Africa Programme, Chatham House
Sanam Vakil, Professorial Lecturer, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Bologna, Italy
Stephen A. Seche, Executive Vice President, AGSIW (Moderator)