Podcast: Michael Doran on the Ambiguities in Biden's Middle East Strategy

The veteran foreign-policy analyst thinks the Biden administration is both strengthening Israeli security and facilitating the greatest threat to it. Can both be true?



June 23 2023
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A weekly podcast, produced in partnership with the Tikvah Fund, offering up the best thinking on Jewish thought and culture.

Michael Doran is a senior fellow and director of the Center for Peace and Security in the Middle East at Hudson Institute. The author of Ike’s Gamble: America’s Rise to Dominance in the Middle East (2016), he is also a former deputy assistant secretary of defense and a former senior director of the National Security Council. He tweets @doranimated.

Podcast: Michael Doran

Earlier this week, the American foreign-policy expert and Mosaic writer Michael Doran published an important essay called “Biden’s Ties That Bind.” In it, he argues that the Biden administration’s true strategic aims in the Middle East are not a change from the Obama administration’s aims but are consistent with them.

These aims were to empower Iran in order to establish a balance of power in the region which would, in turn, allow America to focus more attention on China. And to empower Iran, the United States must constrain Israel, Iran’s chief regional nemesis. Doran’s essay seeks therefore to explain how the Biden administration deploys symbols of an American-Israeli united front in order to advance toward a new deal with Tehran. Here, he joins Mosaic’s editor Jonathan Silver to discuss that idea and the evidence he sees for it.

Musical selections in this podcast are drawn from the Quintet for Clarinet and Strings, op. 31a, composed by Paul Ben-Haim and performed by the ARC Ensemble.

More about: Israel & Zionism, Middle East, Politics & Current Affairs