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The defeat of Daesh and the demise of its self-proclaimed Iraqi-Syrian caliphate won't bring peace to the Middle East, or even an end to the Syrian tragedy.The idea was to topple Saddam and bring about a democratic Iraq, which would catalyze comprehensive change throughout the Middle East and transform it into a democratic and pro-Western region.After Daesh's demise, the next chapter in the history of the Middle East will be determined by open, direct confrontation between Sunni Saudi Arabia and Shiite Iran for regional predominance. The two global powers active in the region have already clearly positioned themselves in this conflict, with the U.S. siding with Saudi Arabia and Russia with Iran.Any direct military confrontation with Iran would, of course, set the region ablaze, greatly surpassing all previous Middle East wars.Yes, the U.S. may have learned from the Iraq disaster that it cannot win a land war in the Middle East, despite its vastly superior military power. President Barack Obama sought to withdraw U.S. forces from the region, which proved difficult to achieve both politically and militarily. Trump clearly faces a steep learning curve when it comes to the Middle East – a region that won't wait for him to master it.
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