Claudio Pagliara

China’s delicate balancing act
The heart of Hong Kong

As protests grow in Hong Kong, issues in addition to that of democratic elections are reminding Beijing that it must proceed cautiously in order not to leave the middle classes behind.

Middle East
Trying to keep Bibi cool

While most Israelis agree with Netanyahu’s objection to the nuclear deal with Iran, many worry that his indignant rhetoric will cause a much more problematic rift with the United States.

Nuclear negotiations
Bibi the spoilsport

With everyone exited about the negotiations that have gotten under way in Geneva over Iran’s nuclear program, Israel’s prime minister is trying to throw a damp towel on the festivities.

Back to square one
Battling windmills in the Middle East

With discreetly obstinate diplomacy, John Kerry has managed to convince Israelis and Palestinians to resume peace negotiations. Is he a man with a viable plan, or merely a romantic Don Quixote chasing a legacy as fleeting as the wind?

Looking for stability
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the savviest of them all?

With Netanyahu leading in the polls before the upcoming election, his government is mulling over two crucial issues: Israel’s relationship with Egypt and renewed peace negotiations with the Palestinians.

Israel and the Iranian bomb

Middle East observers keep watching for the moment when Israel decides that Iran, in its suspected quest for a nuclear weapon, has crossed a red line. One thing for sure: how it acts on its various options will affect the entire world.

The gas market heats up
Israeli gas: blessing and curse

The discovery of significant gas fields off the coast of Israel should make the country energy independent. But not only does this risk undermining its high-tech industry, it can easily become the pretext for another conflict with Lebanon.

Quiet in the eye of the storm, for now

The Middle East’s perennial powder keg has been remarkably subdued. Netanyahu has scored some tactical victories of late, but even hardliners fear his policies are increasing the likelihood of an imminent explosion should the Palestinians declare statehood.

Bibi lectures the world

Continually reminding Israelis and the world about the dangers of a second Holocaust has been one of Benjamin Netanyahu’s most notable characteristics. But if he can’t generate optimism, it appears he will keep losing popularity.