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Middle East Focus is a weekly podcast featuring talk and analysis on U.S. foreign policy, contemporary political and social issues in the Middle East, and the arts and culture of region. It is produced by the Middle East Institute, a non-partisan think tank in Washington, D.C. For more information visit

Apr 4, 2024

On this week's episode, Murat Somer - Professor of Political Science and International Relations at Istanbul’s Ozyegin University - and MEI Turkey Program Director Gonul Tol join MEI Editor-in-Chief Alistair Taylor to discuss the main opposition party’s surprising victory in Turkey’s March 31 local elections....

Mar 26, 2024

About the series: This is a critical year for the future of democracy. Half the world’s population will go to the polls in 2024, at a time when citizens in America and across the globe are losing faith in democratic institutions. We often view the rollback of democracy and threats to the liberal international order as...

Mar 11, 2024

MEI's US-Lebanon Fellow Fadi Nicholas Nassar and Emile Hokayem - Director of Regional Security at the International Institute for Strategic Studies - discuss the changing and uncertain rules of engagement between Hezbollah and Israel, and the potential for war between the two following Oct. 7. 

Mar 6, 2024

Director of MEI's Arts & Culture Program Lyne Sneige interviews HH Sheik Rashid Al Khalifa - artist, collector and founder of the RAK Art Foundation and a participating artist in MEI's current gallery exhibition "The Sea of Life: Modern and Contemporary Art from The Kingdom of Bahrain"

Feb 21, 2024

On this week's episode Tamkinet Karim, Syed Mohammad Ali, and Alistair Taylor discuss the results of Pakistan’s Feb. 8 elections and where things might be headed moving forward. Over the past two years, Pakistan has gone through a particularly turbulent period, following the removal of Imran Khan’s government in a...