Towards a Post Middle East international politics?

Chair: Andrea Ruggeri

The first 20 years of the 21st century had as a focal point for international politics the Middle East, mostly due to the conflicts and political instability that the region has experienced. However, among many factors, the diverse outcomes of the so-called Arab Spring, the hasty withdrawal of the US and US allies from Afghanistan, the search for new energy sources, Russia’s war in Europe and Chinese policies towards Pacific and African countries could define a post-Middle East period for international politics. This would represent the beginning of a new political era, in which the reorganisation of alliances and interests may redefine the boundaries of the region, its salience and role of different actors.

In this context, what is left of international peacebuilding efforts in the Middle East region? Are we moving towards a new Middle East where international players (mostly the US) are taking a step back in conflict management, while regional players are taking the lead? Are we moving towards a greater “regionalisation” of peacebuilding efforts and conflict management dynamics?