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Mara Karlin, nonresident senior fellow for foreign policy at Brookings, discusses why she believes the U.S. should be less involved in the Middle East, and what it means for the […]

Mara Karlin, nonresident senior fellow for foreign policy at Brookings, discusses why she believes the U.S. should be less involved in the Middle East, and what it means for the military’s other top priorities.


While the United States has been extensively involved in Middle Eastern conflicts since the start of the 21st century, some commentators say that continued engagement is not the path forward. Mara Karlin, nonresident senior fellow for foreign policy at Brookings, writes that the current level of involvement is not what the military needs right now. “We think going forward, there’s a need to rebalance that involvement in favor of other regions like Asia and Europe, and also because the threats in the Middle East are increasingly not the ones that large military force can actually help fix,” Karlin said. “We describe it as purgatory. Effectively, we’re saying that we are too deeply involved to actually rebalance and worry about say, threats coming from China and Russia as the Pentagon wants to. But, we are not essentially sufficiently involved to try to shape what is happening.”

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