September 27, 2021
General News

In geopolitics and business, relationships matter at our peril

It’s far too soon to know what will come out of Afghanistan, but it is a timely reminder to think in terms of relationships before transactions, writes former diplomat David Landsman

I had intended to write this month about the Middle East. I wanted to explain why the rapprochement between Israel and the Gulf States like the UAE is likely to endure, and why a serious rapprochement between the US and Iran (and so a revival of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action nuclear agreement and the lifting of sanctions) remains extremely unlikely under President Biden as it was under President Trump.

But then came the news of the US withdrawal from Afghanistan and the frighteningly quick Taliban takeover, so it seemed odd to carry on with the piece I’d planned as though nothing had happened.

But in fact, what’s happening in Afghanistan illustrates perfectly what I was planning to say on…

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