Middle East Notes and Comment: The Age of Proxy Wars
May 17, 2013
As revolutions swept the Middle East in 2011, many saw it as the dawn of an age of democratization. More recently, many have begun to see it as an age of Islamicization. It is more accurate, however, to see the region entering an age of proxy wars, on a scale that is likely to dwarf the Arab Cold War that pitted Saudi Arabia against Egypt in the 1950s and 1960s.
While Iran and Saudi Arabia are major antagonists in the unfolding battles, they are not the only ones. The emerging wars are genuinely multipolar, and U.S. policy and practice will need to adapt to this emerging reality.