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My big prediction for 2018 is more chaos in the Middle East. Two conflicts to watch. One is the power struggle between Iran and Saudi Arabia. And, more recently, because of the US decision on Jerusalem, you now have to watch the Arab-Israeli conflict, which was dormant for the past few years.
On the Arab-Israeli front you clearly have to keep an eye on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict but also on Jordan, which is very deeply affected by anything that happens or anything that goes wrong between Palestinians and Israelis.
For Iran and Saudi Arabia, what we need to watch out for is the implication for other countries, because this is a struggle that plays out through proxies. So two countries, in particular, that should be of concern. One is Yemen, where there is already a conflict and a lot of violence. The other one is Lebanon, where the tensions are higher, but you have not yet reached the level of a conflict.
I think there is another dynamic that we have to watch very closely next year, and that is the domestic Saudi dynamic. There is a new crown prince in Saudi Arabia who may very well become king next year. Mohammed bin Salman, who is known as MBS. He is making a lot of changes, a lot of radical changes. The extent to which MBS is able to transform and reform the Saudi economy is of great importance to the outside world. Also, the extent to which he is able to confront the Wahhabi religious establishment and to modernise Saudi Arabia. That's another very important development to watch.
Worst case scenario is more chaos and more violence. Best case scenario, which I don't expect, but it is the best case scenario, is a dialogue begins between Saudi Arabia and Iran on a security arrangement for the Gulf.
On the Arab-Israeli front, the worst case scenario is another intifada in the Palestinian territories. Or best case scenario, a peace settlement, finally. However, that is not something that I expect in 2018.