We track four people on their journey.
We explore the new US-Cuba relationship
Michael Stephens is a research fellow for Middle East studies and head of the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) in Qatar.
It is US retrenchment from the region that has been the cause of regional competition in the first place.
05 Jan 2016 12:59 GMT | Politics, Middle East, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Shia
As with all things in Saudi Arabia, change happens slowly and at its own pace.
15 Dec 2015 08:51 GMT | Politics, Middle East, Saudi Arabia
If the US is not willing to play a hegemonic role in the region, then Riyadh will have to step in.
06 Sep 2015 13:04 GMT | Middle East, US, Barack Obama, ISIL, Yemen
The use of chemical munitions is becoming the norm in Syria and Iraq.
Michael Stephens | 20 Aug 2015 10:28 GMT | War & Conflict, Politics, Middle East, ISIL, Syria
The YPG may seem to be good allies on paper, but if Syria's central regions are alienated it may cause more trouble.
Michael Stephens, Aaron Stein | 28 Jun 2015 08:36 GMT | War & Conflict, Politics, Middle East, ISIL, Kurds
The wily king appears to have understood that to keep things the same, sometimes you have to make changes.
Michael Stephens | 29 Apr 2015 15:38 GMT | Politics, Middle East, Saudi Arabia, Yemen
Saudi Arabia may balk at an Iran-backed actor gaining legitimacy through talks but it has little choice in the long run.
Michael Stephens | 27 Mar 2015 08:20 GMT | War & Conflict, Politics, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Iran
Money and expensive toys don't buy regional stability.
Michael Stephens | 02 Mar 2015 10:37 GMT | War & Conflict, Politics, Middle East, GCC, Saudi Arabia
Can Saudi Arabia manage the turbulent changes in the region without its king?
Michael Stephens | 23 Jan 2015 05:18 GMT | Politics, US & Canada, Bahrain, Egypt, Iran
Iraqi Kurds seethe as US tells them to put aside independence dreams - for now.
Michael Stephens | 25 Jun 2014 10:40 GMT | Politics, US & Canada, Iran, Iraq, Qatar
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is accused of marginalising Sunni and Kurdish voices ahead of April 30 vote.
Michael Stephens | 29 Apr 2014 06:41 GMT | Politics, US & Canada, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon
We travel to remote Manus Island in Papua New Guinea to investigate Australia's refugee detention programme.
Refugees, Papua New Guinea, Australia
In an ancient city torn apart by modern conflict, can food help to bridge political and religious divisions?
Arts & Culture, Middle East, Jerusalem
We look at the Taliban threat and the future of Afghan journalism; plus, Davos - global news event or PR exercise?
Media, Afghanistan, Taliban
We speak to the former UN chief weapons inspector, and ask Noam Chomsky about the US presidential election.
Politics, United States, North Korea