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Middle East Elections 2009: Lebanon, Iran, Afghanistan, and Iraq

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Publication Date: May 2009

Publisher(s): Library of Congress. Congressional Research Service

Series: R40586

Topic: Politics (Political status)

Type: Report

Coverage: Iran Lebanon Iraq Afghanistan

Abstract:

The strategic influence of Iran in the Middle East, the stability of Iraq, and the ongoing war in Afghanistan are at the forefront of U.S. policy and Congressional interest in the region. The Obama Administration and many Members of the 111th Congress are making decisions about the U.S. approach to the Middle East at a time when the consequences of recent decisions and events may constrain U.S. options. In 2009, key elections in Lebanon, Iran, Afghanistan, and Iraq could reshape regional dynamics and either complicate or advance U.S. policy goals in the Middle East.

This report provides an overview of the election contests in Lebanon, Iran, Afghanistan, and Iraq,including possible outcomes and implications for U.S. policy. It will be updated periodically to reflect major developments. For more information, see CRS Report R40054, Lebanon: Background and U.S. Relations, by Casey L. Addis, CRS Report RL32048, Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses, by Kenneth Katzman, CRS Report RL30588, Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy, by Kenneth Katzman, and CRS Report RS21968, Iraq: Politics, Elections, and Benchmarks, by Kenneth Katzman.